Mount Polley, Mariana, Brumadinho. Mining Disasters Foretold: Canada and Brazil
Mount Polley, Mariana, Brumadinho. Mining Disasters Foretold: Canada and Brazil.
Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Kaneff Tower 519
3:00pm – 5:00pm
All are welcomed!
More mine tailings catastrophes: not whether but when
On January 25, another tailings dam disaster occurred at Vale’s Brumadinho mine in Brazil resulting in 110 fatalities with 238 still buried under toxic sludge. This comes just 39 months after the Mariana “environmental crime” in November 2015 at a mine co-owned by Vale and BHP-Billiton. It caused 19 fatalities and a toxic tsunami that swept through two states to the Atlantic Ocean. Canada’s biggest mine tailings disaster occurred in August 2014 at Imperial Metals’ Mt. Polley mine in British Columbia. Zero fatalities but the spill of toxic muck impacted Indigenous communities and small businesses, dependent on land and river systems for their livelihoods. The spills have back stories of unheeded warnings, lack of inspections, delays in compliance, state capture by the mining industry and revolving doors between mining company and government officials. Can the furor created be these tragedies be harnessed by social movements to pressure governments into establishing robust regulatory regimes that actually protect mine workers, surrounding communities and the environment?
Live video footage of Brumadinho collapse
‘Corporate Negligence and State Capture’, Bruno Milanez, Federal University of Juiz de Fora,
‘Tailings Dam Spills: Any Lessons Learned?’, Judith Marshall, CERLAC Associate Fellow
Chaired by David Szablowski, CERLAC Fellow
Commentator: Daniela Compolina, PhD Student, Federal University of Minas Gerais