No real change in Tata Steel emissions of PAHs and lead: RIVM

The Tata Steel plant in IJmuiden is a major source of CO2. Photo:
The Tata Steel plant in IJmuiden. Photo:

High levels of polycarbon-based pollutants and metals, including lead, have once again been found in coarse dust particles deposited close to the Tata Steel works in IJmuiden, public health institute RIVM said on Wednesday.

The results are generally similar to those of a RIVM study in 2020 and, the agency said, it cannot be stated with any certainty whether the amount of PAHs and metals in the IJmond region is decreasing.

To properly check if emissions are going down, the research needs to be carried out over a number of years, the RIVM said. The results of the next survey will be published in spring 2023.

There are some differences from 2020. The amount of PAHs and metals were lower in Wijk aan Zee, but higher in Beverwijk – which is due to weather conditions. The amount of iron found in dust in the entire region was also lower than in 2020.

Nevertheless, the risk to children playing outside remains ‘undesirable’, the RIVM said.

Tata Steel said in a reaction that it is reducing both noise and emissions generated by the plant and last week said the volume of PAHs had been cut by 50% since 2019.

Tata Steel’s calculations, which are verified by an external bureau, reflect actual emissions while the RIVM studies dust that lands in the surrounding area.

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