Green Cross Argentina under its “La Plata River Basin: Conflict on Paper Mills between Argentina and Uruguay” project, has completed water and mud analysis on both coasts of the Uruguay River. The results shows same levels of metal concentrations and therefore no evidence of pollution by the activities of the Botnia paper mill or from effluents of the Industrial Park in Gualeguaychú.
Samples of the water and mud were taken 20 March upstream, in front of and downstream of the paper mill as well as on both coasts of the river and area where the Gualeguaychu River meets with the Uruguay River.
The team, consisting of Carlos Marschoff, Guillermo Jorge and Marisa Arienza of Green Cross Argentina, along with four journalists, also had to meet with the authorities of the Uruguayan army to explain the project upon arrival in the Uruguayan city of Fray Bentos, as previous protesters against the paper mill on the Argentine side of the river has made the issue sensitive in Uruguay.
The samples were sent to the laboratory of the University of Buenos Aires to conduct three types of samples: mud, water for heavy metal analysis and water for dioxin and furans analysis. However, plans are being made to send the samples to laboratories outside of the country in order to study dioxines and furanes that cannot be measured in Argentina or Uruguay. It should be noted that the water and mud sampling results are fully compatible with those performed by the Industrial Technological Institute of Argentina and by Uruguayan Authorities.
In addition, Green Cross Argentina is continuing to measure air quality in Gualeguaychú and can also report no changes in the air quality.