Displacement - an introduction

Below are select introductory materials on business and displacement.  Further reports from a wide range of sources are in the "Displacement" section of our site.

Key international standards

Universal Declaration of Human Rights: articles 17(2) and 25(1)

Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court: articles 7.1(d) and 7.2(d)

Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, Addendum to a report to the UN Commission on Human Rights by UN Special Representative on internally displaced people, Francis Deng (1998)

See also additional standards on the right to housing

Key reports & guidance

“Business and Development: Making Displacement Work for Everyone”, Shankar Venkateswaran, SustainAbility, March 2009

Concerns, company responses & non-responses

The Resource Centre invites companies to respond to allegations of misconduct.  Below are examples of allegations and company responses regarding displacement. We also indicate when a company has not responded.

Brazil: Barra Grande dam: Terra de Direitos and Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens file OECD Guidelines complaint raising social & environmental concerns, Jun 2005.  Response from Alcoa, BAESA.

Burma: Construction of Myitsone dam (China Power Investment, Burmese Govt.) begins - concerns of extortion & abuse of villagers by army, Feb 2008. No response received from China Power Investment.

Burma: Kachin Development Networking Group calls for stop to Irrawaddy dam project (joint venture between China Power Investment, Asia World Company and the State Peace and Development Council of the Burmese military government), due to major human rights, environmental impacts, Nov 2009.  Asia World Company response.  No response from China Power Investment.

Cambodia: 7NG Construction forcibly evicts 152 families from Dey Krahorm, Phnom Penh, Mar 2009. No response received from 7NG.

Colombia: Colombia Solidarity Campaign submission to UK Parliament Joint Committee on Human Rights alleges negative impacts on the Mandé Norte/Murindó mining project on indigenous people, Jul 2009.  Muriel Mining response.

Ghana: Public Eye Awards name Newmont "2009 Worst Company" over proposed mining project that critics say would displace thousands, pollute soil & rivers, Feb 2009.  Newmont response.

Ghana: NGOs say mining companies have impeded food production, led to serious human rights abuses by the military, Jun 2008.  AngloGold Ashanti response.  No response received from Newmont, Golden Star, Redback Mining.

Ghana: NGO makes several allegations against AngloGold Ashanti, including pollution; intimidation of villagers and displacement by govt. security forces. Aug 2009.  AngloGold Ashanti response. 

India: Coal India allegedly failing to address dangerous subsidence, & using mining techniques that encourage increased hazardous illegal mining, Jan-Feb 2009.  Coal India response.

India: Report by former World Bank advisor Robert Goodland raises serious human rights & environmental concerns about Utkal bauxite & alumina project, Apr 2007.  No response received from Hindalco (Aditya Birla).

India: Report on police beatings of Uttar Pradesh villagers who were protesting their displacement by planned Reliance Energy plant, Aug 2006.  Reliance Energy response.

India: Residents oppose proposed Utkal bauxite mining & alumina refinery project over environmental, displacement concerns, Apr 2005.  Alcan response.

Indonesia: Friends of the Earth calls on major banks to withhold further loans from Lapindo Brantas gas project (owned by companies including Energi Mega Persada) until it compensates people displaced by Sidoarjo mud volcano disaster, Jul 2007.  Response from Barclay, Credit Suisse, Fortis, Santos.  No response received from Energi Mega Persada, Medco Energi, Merrill Lynch, Natixis.

Madagascar: Panos/Friends of the Earth report raises displacement, poverty & environmental concerns regarding Rio Tinto mine, Oct 2007.  Rio Tinto response.

Mexico: Allegations that Minefinders' subsidiary Minera Dolores pollutes water sources, displaces local communities – includes NGO ProDesc reply to the company, Jul 2008.  Minefinders response.

Nigeria: Nigerian Agip Oil Company involved in house demolitions to clear land for new facilities, local residents allege, Apr 2006.  Nigerian Agip Oil Company (joint venture Nigerian National Petroleum, ENI, ConocoPhillips) response.

Panama: Cultural Survival says AES dams will harm Ngobe people - "unscrupulous techniques" used to move them, Feb 2008.  No response received from AES.

Papua New Guinea: Alleged forced evictions and housing demolition by police at Barrick's Porgera site, Jun-Jul 2009.  Barrick Gold response.

Philippines: Commission on Human Rights calls for further investigation into alleged housing demolitions & other abuses at OceanaGold Didipio site, Nov 2009.  OceanaGold response.

Peru: Minera Volcán accused of "crimes" against the life and health of residents of Cerro Pasco, including house destructions, May 2008.  No response received from Minera Volcán.

South Africa: Case study examines Anglo Platinum's changing strategies to address displacement & resettlement at Mogalakwena mine following investigation by So. African Human Rights Commission, Nov 2009.  Anglo Platinum response.

Sudan: UN Special Rapporteur on adequate housing concerned about forced evictions & other abuses related to the Merowe dam project, Aug 2007.  Response from Alstom, Harbin, Lahmeyer.

Sudan: International Rivers Network & Corner House say Merowe Dam will displace thousands, May 2005.  Response from ABB, Lahmeyer.  No response received from Alstom.

Get RSS feed of these results

Related stories and components

8 December 2014

SAIIA to host public seminar, ‘land rights or land grabs - who controls and benefits from mining and investment ventures in rural areas?'

Author: South African Institute of International Affairs

'South African Institute of International Affairs public seminar', 8 Dec 2014: The South African Institute of International Affairs Western Cape Branch invites you to a public seminar to be addressed by Dr Aninka Claassens on Land Rights or Land Grab? ...

Read more

16 November 2009

Mining-affected area in Nueva Vizcaya visited by CHR [Philippines]

Author: Ramon Efren R. Lazaro, Business Mirror [Philippines]

The Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) is hailing the order of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to further investigate the alleged illegal demolition and dispersal operations …related to the operation of the Didipio Copper-Gold Mining Project [owned by...

Read more

29 July 2009

[DOC] WACAM condemns the demolishing of James Sarpong’s village by AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem mine [Ghana]

Author: Daniel Owusu-Koranteng, Wassa Community Against Mining (WACAM) [Ghana]

The people of Teberebie...have many complaints against AngloGold Ashanti Iduapriem Mine...includ[ing] allegations of pollution of rivers...using the security agencies to shoot residents, payment of low compensation, non payment of compensation...loss...

Read more

1 May 2009

[PDF] A clash of cultures (and lawyers): A case study of Anglo Platinum and its Mogalakwena mine in Limpopo, South Africa

Author: Leanne Farrell, Eric Mackres and Ralph Hamann

This case study traces the developments leading up to the launch [of the South African Human Rights Commission's 2008 report on Anglo Platinum] and discusses how the company is trying to respond. In particular, will the Limpopo debacle be seen as an...

Read more

1 March 2009

Business and Development: Making Displacement Work for Everyone

Author: Shankar Venkateswaran, SustainAbility

For companies developing major industrial projects, business-as-usual is an increasingly risky strategy where displacement is involved...the company will have to face the consequences of dislocating local communities...Companies that are successful in...

Read more

1 January 2009

[PDF] Public Eye Global Awards - Newmont Corporation

Author: Wassa Association of Communities Affected by Mining (WACAM), Ghana

Sensing an opportunity for huge profits [Newmont] has plans to open a 1,915-hectare goldmine in eastern Ghana. In its rush for riches the company is turning a blind eye to the social and environmental consequences of the project. If the project goes...

Read more

20 December 2008

Reckless In Raniganj [India]

Author: Tusha Mittal, Tehelka [India]

Around the [Raniganj ]coalfields, there are deep gorges where the land has collapsed...Locals live in fear that someday, the entire town with its 35,000 plus population could cave in...Mining protocol demands underground cavities be filled with sand,...

Read more

29 May 2008
+ Español - Hide

Author: Teresita Celis, La República [Colombia]

…[L]a Caja de Compensación Familiar de Risaralda (Comfamiliar)…desde hace un año opera…varios programas encaminados a mejorar las condiciones de vida de los desplazados y sus familias...Comfamiliar destina de su presupuesto…alrededor de mil millones...

Read more

5 May 2008
+ Español - Hide

Author: Cathy García, Eco Portal

La población de Cerro de Pasco debe demandar una compensación de por vida a Minera Volcán ya que ha destruido sus vidas, ha dañado la salud de sus niños, ha destruido la infraestructura de la ciudad, ha destruido las fuentes de agua. Actualmente está...

Read more

1 May 2008

[PDF] Universal Periodic Review - Ghana (May 2008) Human Rights violations in the context of large-scale mining operations - Submission by FIAN International

Author: FoodFirst Information & Action Network

The intention of this submission is to draw attention to the number and intensity of human rights violations in the context of large-scale mining operations in Ghana...During the reporting period, the expansion of existing as well as the development of...

Read more