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Officials: Pollutants found in waters near Kherson following Kakhovka dam disaster

by Kate Tsurkan June 13, 2023 6:38 PM 2 min read
This general view shows grain silos encroached by floodwaters in Kherson on June 8, 2023, as water levels rose in the city following damage sustained at the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant dam. (Photo by Aleksey Filippov/AFP via Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

Laboratory analysis has confirmed the presence of E. coli and cholera in the waters near the city of Kherson following the destruction of the Kakhovka dam, but not in high concentrations, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry's Military Media Center reported on June 13.

According to Oleh Pavlenko, an official from the State Environmental Inspectorate of Ukraine, fuel and other toxic chemicals were also found in the water.

Water analysis is being conducted daily, and while strains of E. coli and cholera have been detected, there were no notable concentrations of any pollutants.

The President's Office previously reported on June 6 that at least 150 tons of machine oil had spilled into the Dnipro River after the Kahovka dam collapsed, and an additional 300 tons risked leaking into the river.

The Health Ministry also warned on June 7 that "chemicals, infectious disease pathogens from cemeteries, sewage treatment plants, and landfills may end up in wells and open water bodies" due to flooding caused in Kherson Oblast and parts of Zaporizhzhia Oblast by the Kakhovka dam's destruction.

Local residents were urged to drink only boiled or imported water and to take water for cooking from source points that are verifiably safe. Food products, including canned goods, could not be consumed if contaminated by flooding, the Health Ministry added.

What are the consequences of the Kakhovka dam’s demolition?
The destruction of the Kakhovka dam can lead to serious humanitarian, ecological, economic, military, and legal consequences. The demolition was carried out by Russian forces in southern Ukraine in the early hours of June 6. And it’s among the most dramatic violations of the Geneva Conventions in…
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