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Tequila byproduct spill fouls Mexican reservoir, kills fish

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  • Tequila byproduct spill fouls Mexican reservoir, kills fish

    80 tonnes of dead fish in Mexican reservoir after Tequila waste spill

    A spill of the residual waste product vinasse has contaminated a local water source and robbed fishermen of their livelihood in Jalisco, the country’s leading Tequila region.

    Researchers say it could take years for the mess to be cleaned up, following a Tequila plant spill near Ayotlan, Mexico, which took place at the end of last year, and led to tens of thousands of fish being poisoned.

    The tragedy was allegedly caused by a fault at a plant contracted to treat Tequila waste products, and resulted in 60 to 80 tons of dead fish being removed from the Las Animas creek.

    Millions of litres of vinasse, a residual liquid generated from the Tequila making process, spilled into the creek, which is part of the San Onofre reservoir.

    How long it takes for the reservoir to return to its previous state will depend on the weather, and how much rain there is to dilute the contamination.

    The disaster has severely impacted local fishermen, whose livelihood has now diminished. Fishermen have been scooping up the dead fish using a machine loaned from the city government and burying them in pits with lime to combat the stench of rotting fish.

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