Direct quote from Chemical Engineering & News, 02 February 2009, p.18, Business - Leather from Another Era by Jean-Francois Tremblay, C&EN Hong Kong.
"LIFE IS ABOUT TO CHANGE in Hazaribagh, the old tannery district of Dhaka, Bangladesh's capital. Within two years—if the scenario currently envisaged pans out—the district's 206 leather tanneries will either shut their doors or move to a different part of the city. Once relocated, their effluent will be treated and their workers will operate in far safer conditions. Some 30,000 workers and much equipment will move.
A way of life will disappear in Hazaribagh, but no one is complaining. The district's tanneries belong to a long-gone era. They dump their untreated waste into drains and ditches that lead to the Buriganga River, the main river flowing through Dhaka. Workers handle corrosive chemicals without protective gear and walk around the tanneries barefoot."
And yet, the world worries about what the US is doing to the environment. I am NOT an advocate for wasteful use nor do I endorse unsound practices, particularly in regard to the environment. BUT, I am soooo tired of the rest of the world pointing fingers at us. Perhaps they, as well as we, should look to our own and let others do the same.