• Short Summary

    INTRODUCTION: Abidjan, the coastal capital of the West African nation, Ivory Coast, shares problems in common with many major cities.

  • Description


    LS Lagoon at Abidjan
    GV & CU Pollution, including tyre
    GV Wind-surfer on water
    GV & SV Rubbish dumped at lagoon edge including chemical drums and old cars (3 shots)
    Gv boy swimmers come out of polluted lagoon
    GV Barrels of lagoon side, tanker truck discharging into lagoon (2 shots)
    GV Old cars strewn on beach and litter piled on top of beach (washed up) (3 shots)
    LS & GV Children playing on beach with mother and child watching (3 shots)

    Background: INTRODUCTION: Abidjan, the coastal capital of the West African nation, Ivory Coast, shares problems in common with many major cities. Its resources are over-taxed as people leave rural areas and small towns to make their life in the capital. With the influx of new arrivals come the problems of metropolitan life -- over-crowding and pollution. Abidjan straddles a huge lagoon, so water pollution is a constant problem.
    SYNOPSIS: Despite signing a treaty to protect West African waterways and coastlines from pollution, the Ivory Coast seems unable to find a real solution to the pollution in Abidjan's lagoon, a focal point of the city.
    Although heavily polluted, the lagoon remains a popular spot for water sports. Wind-surfers and swimmers seem undeterred in sharing the water with chemical waste, car bodies and industrial refuse. In many people's eyes, the lagoon which virtually surrounds Abidjan has become little more than a huge rubbish dump. A more sinister pollutant than the solid offal is the sewage which is pumped into the lagoon from the city's waste system.
    Abidjan now has a population of one million having developed from what was a small town in 1960. An economic boom which carried the Ivory Coast through the last decade is reflected in the capital. Development has been based on increased cocoa and coffee production. Agriculture, including cultivation of palm oil and wood products, represents as much as 80 per cent of the country's national produce. The Ivory Coast now has one of the highest average growth rates in Africa. But the race to technological development has left its casualties -- and Abidjan's lagoon may well be one of them.
    InitialsBB Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

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    Reuters - Including Visnews
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