Our planet is a precious one that should be handled with care. Our ancestors didn’t have today’s modern technologies and so, they couldn’t really harm the environment in the way that modern society does. The industrial revolution brought with it smokestacks and pollution galore, and even as we became more aware of the harmful effects of pollution, we continued to dump waste and emit harmful fuels into the world. And even today, with all of our glorious technology and safety measures, we still have an incredibly polluted world. According to Pure Earth, approximately 200 million people around the world are affected by pollution. And there are dozens of enormous companies that contribute to this pollution every year. So many, in fact, that I’ve decided to compile a list of them.
Archer Daniels Midland
Never heard of Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) before? Most people haven’t, and yet they’re a multi-billion-dollar company. ADM is responsible for providing the essential ingredients for hundreds of products around the world. They are also responsible for polluting the planet. The company has faced several pollution-based lawsuits. More specifically, the company was once forced to pay $430K for a water pollution lawsuit in 2014.
This multi-billion-dollar company, much like ADM, does not necessarily bask in the public eye, but it certainly makes money; more specifically, the company rakes in approximately $42 billion on their soybean and corn processing business. In the process, Bunge has violated their fair share of pollution acts. In fact, the company was forced to pay a whopping $13.9 million-dollar fine in 2006 for violating a multi-state Clean Air Act. By paying the fine and, subsequently, following the Clean Air Act’s protocol, the company was able to reduce their pollution in eight states!
Another company that most people haven’t heard of, ConAgra Foods is actually the mastermind behind some of the world’s most popular food brands (Slim Jim, Orville Redenbacher’s, and Vlasic pickles to name a few). But don’t let their delicious foods fool you, ConAgra is responsible for some tremendous environmental scandals, most notably in 2014 when the company was forced to pay a $5.7 million fine for a sludge lagoon cleanup performed by the Environmental Protection Agency; the sludge was created by the A.C. Lawrence Leather Company, which was eventually purchased by ConAgra.
These companies are all responsible for some truly horrendous pollution crimes and I’m glad that they have all paid for their mistakes. I just hope that they’ve learned their lessons. Unfortunately, there are dozens of other companies all contributing to worldwide pollution in some way, shape or form.