A government report shown to the paper revealed that 67 chemicals, including highly toxic dioxins and polychlorinated bi-phenyls (PCBs), have been found leaking from the site.
Brofiscin quarry, on the outskirts of Groesfaen village near Cardiff, reputedly ‘smells of sick’ when rain falls, and is the source of a bright orange stream. Barton Williams, who now owns the ground where the landfill once was, says he was not told that it contained toxic waste when he bought the land.
“It’s leaking, isn’t it? It’s the wrong colour. They haven’t told me what’s in there,” he told the Guardian.
In 2003 the 36 metre-deep quarry belched out a cloud of vile smelling gas, which alerted local people as to what might lie buried within. It has now emerged that the groundwater has been polluted since the 1970s, and that the drums holding the toxic waste are expected to corrode further.
On Sunday, the Environment Agency announced that it would be launching an inquiry into the pollution. A spokesman for Monsanto insisted that the company had informed its waste contractors of the toxic nature of the chemicals given to them for disposal.
This article first appeared in the Ecologist February 2007