Brazil new mining code will discipline use of wastes
From now on, the mining company will have the responsibility of recovering degraded areas by the mining activity.
President Michel Temer on Tuesday signed decrees regulating the new mining code, setting stricter environmental rules and enforcing mine closures, but also aiming to boost funding for the sector's development.
From now on, the mining company will have the responsibility of recovering degraded areas by the mining activity, one of the main segments of the Brazilian economy, which has in Vale the largest global producer of iron ore.
To enable the development of new technologies and the consequent reduction of environmental liabilities, one of the decrees also foresees that the National Mining Agency (ANM) will discipline the use of tailings and wastes from the mining activity.
We all want an increasingly competitive, innovative, sustainable mining. In fact, sustainability is the goal of many of these new rules that we have just edited, Timer said during a ceremony to sign the decrees in Brasilia.
From now on, practices that degrade the environment will no longer occur, said Minister of Mines and Energy, Moreira Franco, also present at the signing ceremony of the decrees.
The allegations come after Brazil recorded major accidents in the mining sector, even after the country's biggest environmental disaster, with the demise of a tailings dam by mining company Samarco in 2015.
This year, the disruption of an Anglo American pipeline dumped a mixture of iron ore with water in a river in Santo Antônio do Grama (MG).
In addition, the Norwegian bauxite refinery Norsk Hydro admitted to dumping effluents in the Amazon region in Barcarena (PA), although it has denied allegations by authorities that it has contaminated the environment with its activities.
Authorities, however, did not cite environmental accidents in their speeches.
With the code reformed, they explained that it will also be mandatory to properly implement a mine closure plan, which is now part of the concept of mining activity.
We have explicitly demanded that the mine closure plans be followed to the letter," he said. "We also made clear the obligation to recover degraded areas, Temer said.
Besides the environmental theme, Temer pointed out that several others were addressed through the publication of the decree, including a search to stimulate investments in the sector.