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29 Jun 2016

Brazil: Civil society groups appeal to UN criticizing agreement over dam burst for lack of participation & adequate remedying; Samarco, Vale and BHP Biliton respond

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Samarco, Vale and BHP Billiton to respond to new allegations of abuses related to the socioenvironmental disaster caused by the collapse of an iron ore dam in Minas Gerais in November 2015. All companies responded.

On 2 March 2016, the three companies signed an agreement with the Brazilian government to repair the social, environmental and economic damages caused by the dam burst, considered one of the worst environmental disasters in the country’s history. The main criticism of the agreement are the lack of participation and information of affected people. Critics also claim that the agreement favours the companies and that it “is incompatible with international standards for remedying human rights violations...”.

Samarco also responded specifically to allegations of human rights abuses raised in the Risco Seguro Brasil article (available in Portuguese below), and Vale also responded specifically to the shareholders article by CIDSE.

To read this story in Portuguese, click here.

Company Responses

Samarco (joint venture BHP Billiton and Vale) View Response