The Evidence Union Carbide Doesn’t Want You to See

(For a side-by-side comprehensive comparison of all the studies conducted through 2013, please see this PDF, which provides a chart analysis of results and summary of each study’s findings.)

Despite the overwhelming evidence, Union Carbide has never owned up to its role in the contamination of land surrounding the factory.

On Union Carbide’s website,, its PR firm claims that there isn’t sufficient evidence linking the UCC factory to the contamination just a few hundred meters away. In fact, UCC  prefers to pretend that the contamination doesn’t exist at all or that it might be caused by agricultural run-off. (Carbide’s excuse-making reminds us of their lies after the disaster too – see sabotage theory.)

To debunk Union Carbide’s incessant lies, ICJB has put together this comprehensive page examining the results of public and confidential studies conducted in and around the factory site. In the process, we demonstrate how UCC has continued to lie to avoid responsibility for its crimes, leading to thousands of more deaths and illnesses.

 1989 Union Carbide Begins Tests

Alarmed by comment about contamination in the local press, Carbide hastily conducted its own private investigation. In 1989, Union Carbide management began the “Site Rehabilitation Project –Bhopal Plant,” which was shortly to become the “Bhopal Site Rehabilitation and Assets Recovery Project.” Internal documents on the project show that Union Carbide hired its appointed consultant, Arthur D Little (ADL), to be “Primarily Responsible For All Aspects of Site Rehabilitation Efforts” (UCC Internal Document 02271) and to find the cheapest possible method of site rehabilitation. (Previously, as UCC’s consultant directly after the disaster, ADL came up with the bogus Sabotage Theory to explain why the disaster occurred in the first place.) Though the record shows that the Indian government and the Madhya Pradesh state government cooperated fully with UCIL and UCC throughout their site remediation activities, further documents reveal that UCC attempted to actively conceal the existence, nature and scale of the developing problem of environmental contamination at the Bhopal site.

The key document, an internal Union Carbide study entitled the “Presence of Toxic Ingredients In Soil/Water Samples Inside Plant Premises,” gives a frightening insight into the cover-up perpetuated by Union Carbide. “The seriousness of the issue needs no elaboration. Samples drawn in June-July ’89 from land-fill areas and effluent treatment pits inside the plant were sent to R and D. They consisted nine soil/solid samples and eight liquid samples. The solid samples had organic contamination varying from 10% to 100% and contained known ingredients like napthol and naphthalene in substantial quantities. Majority of the liquid samples contained napthol and/or Sevin in quantities far more than permitted by ISI for onland disposal. All samples caused 100% mortality to fish in toxicity assessment studies and were to be diluted several fold to render them suitable for survival of fish.”

Nevertheless Carbide issued no public warning of the danger. An internal UCC memo referred to the need for secrecy, suggesting that the information should be kept “for our own understanding.” Not only did UCC fail to warn people living nearby, it vociferously denied that there was a problem and, incredibly, wrote to the Gas Relief Minister criticizing those who were trying to make people aware of the danger, suggesting the news reports were “mischievous attempts to cause panic.” Meanwhile in the USA, UCC tried to portray Bhopal activists and their supporters as “communists” who aimed “to restructure US society into something unrecognizable and probably unworkable.”

Carbide could argue that the gas disaster had been an accident, but deliberately withholding vital information while people are being poisoned is premeditated and wicked. It seems that Union Carbide learned nothing from the gas disaster, except that its “reckless and depraved indifference” would probably never be punished.

1990 BGIA Study

The Bhopal Group for Information & Action (BGIA) is one of the groups on the ground in Bhopal representing survivors. In early 1990 BGIA contacted a government research center, including the State Research Laboratory of Bhopal, regarding analysis of soil and groundwater samples from the vicinity of the factory site. The BGIA was told that anything connected with Union Carbide was highly sensitive and required clearance from top officials. Analysis by independent agencies was pursued instead. 
 In April 1990 BGIA sent sediment from the Solar Evaporation Ponds, soil samples taken from near the ponds, and community well water from the Jai Prakash Nagar neighborhood (which is located next to the factory) to the Citizen’s Environmental Laboratory, Boston (CEL). The following toxic materials were found in the sediment sample:

Waste Pond (parts per billion)
Benzene, oxybis 7, 890
Dichlorobenzenes 87,500
Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons 2,340
Phthalates 9,940
Trichlorobenzenes 9,410
Trimethyl Trianzintrione 24,470
1-Napthalenol 59,090
Additionally, Dichlorobenzenes and Trichlorobenzenes were found in the soil and water samples. Phthalates were also found in the soil.

The issue of this contamination was raised at the 1990 Union Carbide AGM by Marco Kaloften of CEL.


1990 NEERI Report

NEERI, the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute of Nagpur, was named as an “expert” member of a special Task Force convened by Madhya Pradesh politicians to work on the issue of contamination at the Bhopal plant site.

In 1989 UCIL, at the approval of its consultant firm Arthur D Little (ADL), retained NEERI to conduct an official investigation of contamination at the site. The results, published in the 1990 report, titled “Assessment of pollution damage due to Solar Evaporation Ponds at UCIL,” seemed to find little significant contamination. But NEERI failed to identify at least nine chemicals that showed their presence as characteristic peaks in the High Performance Liquid Chromotography used on samples taken from the SEPs. The authors of the report concluded that the SEPs had not contaminated soil and groundwater, despite the caveat expressed on page 142: “There are a few organic compounds which could not be identified and hence the sediment [in the SEPs] cannot be ruled out to be non-hazardous.”

In an internal memo never meant to be seen by the outside world, Carbide’s head of Health, Safety & Environmental Research at Danbury, Connecticut cautioned his colleagues about NEERI’s puzzling results, writing, “This [NEERI] study… seems to implicitly ‘clear’ the plant site itself. However, I would advise caution in using the NEERI data… we do not know the exact sample and analytical protocols used” (UCC Internal Document 02050). Union Carbide authorized a confidential ‘in-house’ investigation, the results of which were not shared with local authorities or made public at the time (they only came to light as a result of discovery in the New York lawsuit in 2002).

But this did not stop Union Carbide from quoting the NEERI study later when defending itself against allegations regarding the contamination. The company has continuously used the 1990 NEERI report to assert that there was no danger.

“Union Carbide publicly cited a flawed study to mislead local residents and the [Madhya Pradesh State] government on the extent of the water and soil contamination”, Sathyu Sarangi of the Bhopal Group for Information and Action (BGIA) remarked. “But they hid their own studies from public view, because their own studies show that by 1989 the local water was already deadly.”

1995-1996 Toxic Dumping Continues

It is important to note that in all probability the dumping of toxic materials continued even after the factory ceased manufacturing. For example, it has been reported that in 1995 Ortho-dichlorobenzenes – likely used as a carrier for the pesticides manufactured at the plant – were poured by UCIL directly into the ground by the north perimeter wall. Residents of Atal Ayub Nagar attested that within a few weeks drinking water from the community tube wells became yellow and foul tasting.

According to security working at the factory site, for a period of 3-4 months in 1995 fountains of chemical wastewater were being pumped into the SEPs. In 1996 management attempted to cover up the environmental damage caused by the SEPs: the toxic sludge was all dumped into one pond and covered over with farm soil, layers of polythene plastic, and finally a concrete cover. The two other ponds were leveled (during which their black polythene liners were ruptured). Now, soil has eroded around the concrete covers allowing the surrounding water to become contaminated with toxic material. Populous settlements have since sprung up around this area.


1991 & 1996 State Research Laboratory Tests

In 1991 and 1996 the Madhya Pradesh Public Health Engineering Department’s State Research Laboratory carried out confidential tests on local groundwater taken from 11 tube wells located in communities situated around the periphery of the factory (J P Nagar, Atal Ayub Nagar, Arif Nagar, Chhola and Kainchi Chhola). Both studies reported heavy contamination, though the tests did not attempt to identify specific contaminants.

On November 1996 the State Research Laboratory of the Madhya Pradesh Public Health and Engineering department completed its own report. Instead of being released, the report was filed under The Official Secrets Act. But in 1999, the memo from the November 1996 report was accidentally leaked.

Written by the Chief Chemist of State Research Laboratory, Bhopal, the memo confirms that Bhopal’s groundwater was contaminated. Excerpts from the memo:

“All samples were subjected to both bacteriological and chemical analysis. The results show that the ground water is contaminated with bacteria and there is a heavy presence of chemicals. Normally the COD [Chemical Oxygen Demand] value in ground water is zero but the samples tested here had COD values between 45 mg/l and 98 mg/l whereas, the WHO has fixed the standard value of C O D for natural water at 6 mg/l. The high values of COD found in the ground water establishes that large amounts of chemicals are dissolved in it.” High levels of CODs point to contamination with oxidisable material, probably organic chemical contamination.

The report also mentions that the results reflect those obtained in a similar 1991 investigation by the same agency: “Usually C O D cannot be brought down by commonly used techniques. When river water is contaminated with chemicals one has to wait for it to come down and this problem is controlled in a few days by dilution. With ground water such a solution is not possible hence, it will be proper to stop these sources. Water from tubewells in other parts of Bhopal were examined at this laboratory. However, chemical contamination was found only in these areas. The tubewells in these areas were tested five years back and at that time too the results showed chemical contamination. Hence, it is established that this pollution is due to chemicals used in the Union Carbide factory that have proven to be extremely harmful for health. Therefore the use of this water for drinking must be stopped immediately.” – Sd. Chief Chemist, Madhya Pradesh Public Health Engineering Dept., State Research Laboratory, Shyamla Hills, Bhopal

One can only guess as to why this important report was classified and not released to the public.

1997 NEERI Report

People living in the neighboring communities continued to protest, saying that their water tasted and smelled horrible and that people were getting very ill. By the mid-nineties, the state of Madhya Pradesh wanted to conduct another study of the Bhopal site.

By 1993 UCC had recognized that NEERI’s previous incompetence in 1990 was extremely valuable to the corporation’s interests in covering up the contamination. Carbide decided that, judging by its past performance, NEERI would again do a wonderful job. In internal documents, Carbide listed NEERI’s observed weaknesses in detail:

  • NEERI was not used to developing standards of contamination on its own
  • NEERI was found to ignore standard sampling procedures
  • NEERI was likely to recommend unrealistic standards of contamination without sufficient back-up
  • NEERI had a tendency of playing it safe

(UCC Internal Documents 02400 and 02401)

UCC also noted that, “It was noticed that State Pollution Control Board did not question the investigations and recommendations of NEERI. If the work is carried out by any other agency, the Board follows-up and examines the work critically and more so if UCIL is involved.” Therefore UCC’s strategy developed as such: “From the foregoing it is advisable to entrust the work to NEERI, but develop a strategy to minimize adverse effects of their weaknesses, with the help of expert advice and guidance of UCIL.” (UCC Internal Documents 02400 and 02401)

If you read between the lines it is clear that what UCC actually meant was that they would make full use of NEERI’s weaknesses and suggestibility. (For the whole Carbide discussion read UCC Internal Documents 02398, 02399, 02400, 02401, 02402.)

In 1994 the consultancy Arthur D. Little (ADL), acting on behalf of UCIL, retained NEERI again to assess soil and water contamination within the factory premises.

Important note: When first hired, ADL worked with the parent company UCC in Danbury. But in the final 1997 NEERI report all reference to UCC was omitted. Instead, ADL was to pretend that it had been working only with the subsidiary Union Carbide Indian Limited – UCIL. But a 1993 internal UCC memo revealed that the American Carbide executives were calling the shots, demonstrating once again that UCC knew about the contamination in Bhopal and played an active role in covering it up.

The 1997 NEERI Executive Summary described the span of the below-ground dumping areas within the factory as at least 6.4 hectares, or 21% of the total site area. The NEERI report concluded that some 17 areas within the factory had been heavily contaminated, noting “high concentration of temik, sevin and lindane…in the entire Disposal Area – I” and in “55% of Disposal Area – II.” It found that the concentration of semivolatiles, including sevin, temik and alpha napthol, was very high at seven sites and moderately high at ten others. Tellingly, “the concentration of semivolatiles was observed to be higher at 60cm samples than 30cms in a few locations indicating the possibility of contamination even at higher depths.”

In spite of these significant findings, NEERI suggested that groundwater would be safe from contamination in the interim because, “In general the soil in the area is clayey soil…clayey soil is highly impermeable…ie. it would take 23 years for the contaminants to reach the ground water table provided the leachate does not find a channel to migrate at a faster rate.” (UCC Internal Documents 01100 and 01101)

Months earlier, in 1996, the State Research Laboratory report had found highly elevated levels of industrial chemicals in wells around the plant. Nevertheless, in NEERI’s report made the reckless claim that the groundwater is potable: “The water meets the drinking water quality criteria. This indicates that the contaminants have not reached the water table till now” (UCC Internal Document 01099). NEERI did recommend remedial measures for the highly contaminated areas and also noted the need to take soil samples at one meter of depth and deeper.

Arthur D Little’s Critique of the 1997 NEERI Report

When the first draft of the 1997 NEERI report was sent to Union Carbide, it was music to corporate ears. Though the report recognized that over 20% of the site area was heavily contaminated, it confidently gave the groundwater a clean bill of health.

However, before being published, the Arthur D Little (ADL) consultancy firm reviewed the draft of the NEERI report. ADL’s task of reviewing the draft was no small feat. The criticisms in their private report to Carbide’s directors ran to seventeen pages, finding flaws right across the report’s spectrum. Most critically, ADL clearly advised against giving the water a clean bill of health: “While we agree that the ground water samples do not contain contamination, the sentence ‘The ground water appears to be suitable for drinking purposes’ is too strong given the limits of the data for the following reasons. First, there is only one round of ground water samples from these wells. Second, it is not known if contaminant migration will impact ground water in the near future. Finally, there is little information regarding the hygrogeology in the area.” p.13, ADL’s comments (UCC Internal Document 03043). ADL also suggested that NEERI had failed to find contamination because its sampling methods were flawed. ADL also pointed out that at one point it was unclear as to whether NEERI was claiming that laborers were or were not exposed to contaminated groundwater.

Astonishingly, when NEERI published the final version of its report in 1997, the key data it used to support its (flawed, as was later proven) assertion that the groundwater was safe, was that the estimated migration time of the contaminants would be extremely slow – the key point that ADL had taken such strong issue with. NEERI wrote in its report that, “Statements concerning contaminant travel times to the aquifer below the site should be considered to be highly speculative. There is very little site-specific data that can be used to confidently predict infiltration rates.” Whereas page 2 of ADL’s criticisms says: “The conclusions regarding travel time to the water table may significantly underestimate the potential for ground water contamination…site-specific data from the report suggest that travel times could be significantly faster than assumed. For example, Table 5.33 indicates the majority of the stratigraphy above the water table consists of sandy soil and sandstone bedrock. Clay is only present to a depth of 6.1 metres… As an example, one can argue that the worst case scenario travel time would be 2 years, assuming the following…” pgs.12-13, comments (UCC Internal Documents 03042- 03043).

All of ADL’s suggested changes to the NEERI report were for naught – the ADL analysis was never made public and none of the suggested changes were incorporated into NEERI’s 1997 published report. Indian agencies, Union Carbide, and now Dow Chemical have often cited the 1997 NEERI report in their repeated denial of contamination problems at the Bhopal site.

In Summation:

  • The 1997 NEERI Report
 concluded that water outside the factory was not contaminated. Carbide Consultant Arthur D Little (ADL) found the report to be deeply flawed, yet Union Carbide and Dow Chemical continue to quote this report in spite of the facts.
  • ADL suggested that NEERI failed to find contamination because its sampling methods were flawed.
  • ADL suggested it was irresponsible to claim that local water was safe for drinking.
  • ADL warned that groundwater contamination could happen far more swiftly and seriously than envisaged.
  • ADL wrote 17 pages of suggested changes, but NEERI did not incorporate any of them. Not one.

NEERI: Bumbling Idiot or Cunning Corporate Stooge?

NEERI’s role has been, to speak generously, one of unparalleled incompetence. Either that, or it has played the principal part in a decades-long cover-up and has willfully sacrificed tens of thousands of men, women and children to daily exposure to lethal chemicals.

The 1990 and 1997 NEERI reports reveals not just incompetence but something far murkier. Both the MP State government and Union Carbide have consistently used the NEERI reports to deny what has now been proven – that the lethal contamination of the ground water which supplies the drinking wells of 20,000 Bhopalis has anything to do with Union Carbide’s factory. Questions regarding the less-than-clear relationships that existed between Carbide, the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board, which hired NEERI, and the-then senior ministers of Madhya Pradesh, who allowed this to happen, remain.

The Union Carbide Corporation, despite knowing the specific and damning criticisms of the 1997 NEERI report made by its consultant Arthur D Little, stated during proceedings in the US lawsuit concerning contamination that, “there was no groundwater contamination outside the plant” due to the “relative impermeability of the soil in and around the plant.” (Def. St. at ¶ 6; Ex. A to the Krohley Declaration.)

Who took the decision to leave the 1997 report unchanged in the face of such fundamental criticisms and why? What was NEERI’s relationship with Union Carbide’s agent in Bhopal, Arthur D Little? What was the nature of NEERI’s relationship with departments of the Madhya Pradesh government?

Union Carbide’s unreliability as a witness has been demonstrated often enough that it requires no further comment, but the honesty and motives of NEERI should continue to be questioned. Large questions hang over the organization’s integrity due to its contamination assessment of the site. There is no doubt that NEERI’s damning report, which stalled efforts to get clean water to contaminated area, has led to further loss of life and the permanent health damage of thousands more.

1999 Greenpeace Report

On November 15, 1999, Greenpeace International published a report entitled “The Bhopal Legacy” (The Bhopal Legacy, Greenpeace Research Laboratories, University of Exeter, Nov. ’99), which included the results of testing conducted on samples of soil/waste from seven locations and samples of groundwater from twelve sites in and around the factory. The testing was conducted with the help of the laboratories and technical experts at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom. This report provided the first public and scientifically reliable evidence of massive and spreading groundwater contamination emanating from the Bhopal plant. The findings led Greenpeace to declare the site a “global toxic hotspot.”

Greenpeace collected 33 samples of soil and 22 samples of groundwater from in and around the factory site. It found heavy concentrations of carcinogenic chemicals and heavy metals like mercury. Mercury was found at between 20,000 to 6 million times the expected levels – “Sample IT9012, collected from a drain directly beneath the plant, contained free mercury at 12% of the overall weight of the sample (between 20,000 and 6 million times higher than might be expected as background).”

Elemental mercury was discovered to be widely distributed across the plant premises. (Mercury was originally used in the Sevin plant as a sealant in the pan filters, but this doesn’t explain its dispersal over such a large area.) Twelve volatile organic compounds (VOCs), most of them greatly exceeding WHO and EPA standard limits, were found to have seeped into local tube wells, which supplied water to more than 20,000 people in the immediate area.

The investigation demonstrated, “extensive and, in some cases, severe chemical contamination of the environment surrounding the former Union Carbide plant. As a result of the ubiquitous presence of contaminants, the exposure of the communities surrounding the plants to complex mixtures of hazardous chemicals continues on a daily basis…long-term chronic exposure to mixtures of toxic synthetic chemicals and heavy metals is also likely to have serious consequences for the health and survival of the local population.” Three water wells in the Atul Ayub Nagar community, northeast of the plant, were found to have the most severe contamination, containing chemicals known to produce cancer and genetic defects. This can partly be explained due to the movement of groundwater being in a northeasterly direction (NEERI, 1990). Other wells to the south of the plant, though not as severely contaminated, also showed elevated levels of toxic chemicals.

Greenpeace emphasized the need for an internationally verified survey and decontamination program for the factory and the surrounding area.

In summary the 1999 Greenpeace analysis found:

Chemical compound No. of times greater
than US EPA limits (1)
Potential effects on health
1, 2-Dichlorobenzene 5 Reported effects include leukemia, liver and kidney damage and chromosomal aberrations
1, 4-Dichlorobenzene 11
Tetrachloroethene 9 Exposure to very high concentrations can cause dizziness, headaches, sleepiness, confusion, nausea, difficulty in speaking and walking, and unconsciousness This compound is classified as “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” by the US Department of Health and Human services (US DHHS). Exposure to tetrachloroethene-contaminated drinking water has been reported to be associated with an increased risk of leukemia and bladder cancer
Trichloroethene 50 Drinking large amounts of trichloroethylene may cause nausea, liver and kidney damage, convulsions, impaired heart function, coma, or death. Drinking small amounts of trichloroethylene for long periods may cause liver and kidney damage, nervous system effects, impaired immune system function and impaired foetal development in pregnant women, although the extent of some of these effects is not yet clear.
Chloroform (2) 26 -32 Chloroform is classified as “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” by the US Department of Health and Human services (US DHHS). The US EPA lists liver, kidney or central nervous system problems and an increased risk of cancer for trihalomethanes, as a group of chemicals of which chloroform is part.
Carbon tetrachloride 682 “Reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” by the US Department of Health and Human services (US DHHS). High exposure can cause liver, kidney and central nervous system damage, including the brain. Causes headaches, dizziness, nausea and vomiting. In severe cases coma and even death can occur.


(1) EPA National Primary Drinking Water Regulations (NPDWRs or primary standards), legally enforceable standards that apply to public water systems.
(2) The value for chloroform is actually for a group of compounds called trihalomethanes, of which chloroform is one. There are four contaminants included in this group: chloroform, bromodichloromethane, dibromochloromethane and bromoform. No other trihalomethanes were detected in any of the samples analyzed in 1999, nor in the sample analaysed in 2001. From 1st January 2002, the EPA level for trihalomethanes  changed from 100 ug/l to 80 ug/l.

  • Water samples from five locations contained a range of volatile and semi-volatile organochlorines.
  • Volatile organochlorine compounds (VOCs), including chloroform (ranging from 0.1 to 2.59 mg/l respectively), carbon tetrachloride (range: 0.2 to 3.4 mg/l) and tetrachlorethene were found in groundwater collected from three wells close to the northern boundary of the former Union Carbide plant. Chloroform and carbon tetrachloride were both used as solvents in the Sevin manufacturing process. Despite warning signs not to drink the water, these wells remained accessible and in continued use by the local residents.
  • Chlorobenzenes were also detectable in the groundwater. One sample adjacent to the northern plant boundary contained over 2.8 mg/l of 1,2-dichlorobenzene.
  • Trichlorobenzenes, rarely reported in drinking water at levels in excess of 1 ug/l were found in four samples, the highest concentrations being 0.145 mg/l.

In 2001 Greenpeace conducted further water tests, which reaffirmed the presence of chlorinated benzenes (1,2-dichlorobenzene, 1,3, dichlorobenzene and 1,4-dichlorobenzene), chloroform, trichloroethene and carbon tetrachloride (tetra chloromethane) in water wells being used by the communities. While no trichlorobenzenes were found in 2001, this is probably due to the monsoon diluting contaminates.

2002 Fact Finding Mission on Bhopal

In 2002, the Fact Finding Mission on Bhopal (FFMB), led by Delhi-based environmental organization Shristi, conducted a study which found that many of Union Carbide’s most dangerous toxins – including lead, mercury and organochlorines such as 1,3,5 Trichlorobenzene, dichloromethane, and chloroform – can now be found in the breast milk of mothers living around the factory. Report after report has corroborated the extent and seriousness of this contamination. In its report, entitled “Surviving Bhopal 2002: Toxic Present Toxic Future,” published in January 2002, FFMB states that, “the groundwater, vegetables and even breast milk is contaminated to various degrees by heavy metals like nickel, chromium, mercury and lead, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like dichlorobenzene and halo-organics like dichloromethane and chloroform.”

The report highlighted the fact that the chemicals found in the samples can have a long-term impact on the reproductive, immune and nervous system through bio-accumulation, with potential effects including carcinogenicity, mutagenicity and chromosomal aberrations. Human breast milk samples showed maximum concentrations of Volatile Organic Chemicals and a higher concentration of pesticide in breast milk, allowing the shortest route of exposure to infants who are most vulnerable to these kinds of carcinogens. This report was the first to definitively demonstrate how the negligent actions of Union Carbide are being passed on to future generations at an exponential rate.

Other Mid-2000s Reports

In September 2002, a report by The People’s Science Institute, Dehra Dun, found mercury in groundwater sources near the plant. Mercury levels were found to be twice as high as the one microgram per liter permitted by the WHO.

Between April 2003 and January 2004 the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board (MPPCB) conducted four separate groundwater tests at ten community locations. With some consistency, “The pesticides Lindane, Endosulfan i- ii, Heptachlor, Aldrin, Dialdrin, BHC, Endrin and 4,4 DDT were detected in some of the samples” along with the halogenated hydrocarbon Trichlorobenzene. The reports came to light through submissions made in the Supreme Court of India.


2009 Centre for Science and Environment Report

Just before the 25th anniversary of the gas disaster, new evidence came to light showing that the problem is getting worse. The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a non-governmental organization based in New Delhi, conducted a very comprehensive testing of the site, the report of which is available here as a PDF.

Water from a hand pump in Atal Ayub Nagar, which had been found to be dangerously contaminated with carbon tetrachloride in 1999, was tested again in 2009, at which time it was discovered that the level of carbon tetrachloride had increased sevenfold.

2010 NEERI & NGRI Reports

Despite NEERI’s abysmal track record, it conducted a third test on the contamination in 2010. For a detailed technical review of these reports, please download this PDF document.