Town is hit by BLACK snow: Scientists sent to discover why region in Kazakhstan has been covered in dark substance
- Snow in the town of Temirtau, in Kazakhstan, fell white but then turned black
- Mysterious dark substance settled over the top of the snow in early January
- Those living in the region believe the dust is pollution from nearby factories
- A team of government scientists has now been sent to discover the cause
Panicked residents of a remote region of Kazakhstan have demanded an explanation after snow in their town started turning black.
Frozen flakes fell on the town of Temirtau as their usual white colour but were then coated by a mysterious dark substance in early January.
A team of government scientists has now been dispatched to unravel the mystery.
Snow in the town of Temirtau, in central Kazakhstan, began turning black in early January and panicked residents have demanded an investigation
Locals blame a huge steel mill which is located nearby for pumping out pollution which has settled on top of the snow as a dark dust
Ministers decided to act after images of the striking snow were posted on social media by locals worried about their health, the BBC discovered.
Temirtau sits at the heart of Kazakhstan's iron industry and plays host to the country's largest steel production plant.
Many believe that pollution from the plant is responsible for the black snow.
'We can't live like this. We're suffocating here,' wrote one user.
ArcelorMittal Temirtau, the owner of the steel mill, has accepted that pollution from its plant likely caused the snow to change colour.
It said that low winds in December meant that pollution likely did not dissipate as usual and instead settled on the snow.
In December 2017 alone, the national meteorological agency recorded levels of hydrogen sulphide in Temirtau exceeding the government-mandated limit by more than 11 times.
A team of government scientists has now been dispatched to identify the mysterious substance and track down the cause
City workers in Temirtau use a digger to scrape the dark snow into the back of a truck
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