Shared by Bolivia (31 percent), Argentina (25 percent) and Paraguay (44 percent) neither is responsible for the serious problems it faces, such as pollution from mining, dredging and deforestation. The Aboriginal people are the most affected.
Precisely these communities use the Pilcomayo river for irrigation, without any prior treatment, causing its products have levels of heavy metals above that indicates the International Standards. According to a study conducted in 2011, Bolivian authorities found that the ranges of the presence of zinc in vegetable crops amounted to 50.31, ie nine times more than allowed while the permissible limit by the FAO (United Nations Food and Agriculture) is 5.
In urban pollution and mining, which decreases soil fertility and, consequently, reduces the means of life and affects the economy of many indigenous and peasant communities, is the lack of a comprehensive management policies of the basin, on the Bolivian side, causing the accumulation of sediment downstream, damaging the only source of life for some indigenous communities, as is the activity of fishing.
Those affected by mining contamination of the Pilcomayo basin declared a state of emergency, because the regional authorities of Potosi (Bolivia), do not solve the problem of pollution of the waters of this affluent.
The concentration of heavy metals in the deposits of low waters riverbeds and high of the Pilcomayo River from Potosi to the border with Argentina and Paraguay deserves the attention of those countries, so that not only the Bolivian government to take measures against this serious environmental problem.
By Gustavo Carrasquel | ANCA24