The signing of the Historic Agreement Aims to Repair Barão de Cocais
In a significant development, Brazilian mining company Vale has formally entered into a compensation agreement, marking a pivotal step toward repairing the repercussions of its actions in the city of Barão de Cocais.
The agreement, valued at a staggering R$ 527 million, was sealed during a conciliation hearing held at the Judiciary Center for Conflict Resolution and Citizenship, under the purview of the Court of Justice of Minas Gerais’s second instance.
Diverse stakeholders, including the Minas Gerais Public Prosecutor’s Office, Minas Gerais Public Defender’s Office, Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office, and Barão de Cocais City Hall, were instrumental in crafting this accord, with the Archdiocese of Mariana playing a significant intervening role.
Stepping Forward to Repair Communities
This monumental agreement is poised to guide the reparation efforts for the communities impacted by the evacuations of 2019.
These evacuations became necessary due to the escalated emergency level of the Sul Superior dam at the Gongo Soco Mine.
By formalizing this pact, the parties involved aim to lay the groundwork for the upcoming phases of restorative actions, primarily focused on safeguarding the populace.
Wide-Ranging Programs to Foster Recovery
The agreement encompasses a comprehensive array of programs, including income transfer initiatives, the revitalization of tourism and culture, bolstering municipal public services, and addressing the pressing needs of the impacted communities.
Vale has already invested over R$90 million in compensation and developmental undertakings in Barão de Cocais since the escalation of the dam’s hazard status.
Uncompromising Accountability Through Independent Oversight
In a testament to its unwavering dedication to ameliorating the impacted communities, Vale has committed to subjecting the agreement’s outcomes to rigorous scrutiny. They will engage in an independent technical audit to monitor the results of the accord.
Moreover, they will provide independent technical assistance to the affected communities, helping them identify, structure, and present projects aligned with their needs and aspirations.
Safeguarding the Future: Sul Superior Dam
The focus on safety remains paramount for Vale as it navigates the journey toward reparation. The Sul Superior dam, which has been inactive since 2008, is undergoing a process of de-characterization.
The dam features a Downstream Containment Structure, operating under a Stability Condition Statement. The aim is to complete de-characterization by 2029, guided by strict safety protocols.
Constructed in 1982, the Sul Superior Dam currently holds an emergency level 3 classification as per the Emergency Action Plan for Mining Dams.
This commitment to de-characterizing structures upstream is just one facet of Vale’s broader commitment to adhering to federal and state legislation governing dam safety—a testament to its steadfast resolve to ensure responsible mining practices and community well-being.