The Pentagon is the world's largest polluter. Closed military bases are superfund clean-up sites due to nuclear and chemical waste. Agent Orange and depleted uranium devastate those exposed for generations. Land mines are still being recovered in France from WWI. Thousands of Vietnamese are maimed by land mines every year. Much of this destruction can be prevented.
The struggle for reparations is ongoing. VFP projects and Working Groups address many of these issues. Areas of concern include:
Ongoing disabilities and deformations due to Depleted Uranium exposure in Iraq
The military vehicles used in both Iraq and Afghanistan produced many hundreds of thousands of tons of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, and sulfur dioxide in addition to CO2. In addition, the allied bombing campaign of a variety of toxics-releasing sites such as ammunition depots, and the intentional setting of oil fires by Saddam Hussein during the invasion of Iraq in 2003 led to air, soil, and water pollution.
Wars have led to environmental destruction and the degraded environment itself contributes in turn to further conflict
Destruction of military base garbage in burn pits and toxic dust from military operations add to air pollution, heavy military vehicles also disturb the soil and raise dust.
Water may contaminated by the chemical residue of weapons and military operations, such as depleted uranium from shells and benzene and trichloroethylene from air base operations. Perchlorate, a toxic ingredient in rocket propellant, is one of a number of contaminants commonly found in groundwater around munitions storage sites around the world.
Depleted Uranium has been used in U.S. ammunition. It contaminates both soil and water, and with a half-life of 4.5 billion years, is deeply persistent and carcinogenic.
Green Zone: Environmental Costs of Militarism by Barry Sanders