Disguised by the beauty of a reflection, this toxic tailings pond in Alberta, Canada, is a considerable health risk. Such vast lakes—made up of oil sands development residue, or tailings—are completely unlined, and 19 of them lie on either side of the Athabasca River. Individual ponds can range in size up to 8,850 acres.

(Photograph by: Garth Lenz, National Geographic)

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