Samarco

Waste

FAQ

Is the waste from the dams toxic?

No. The waste at the dam sites is inert, it has no toxic components. It is mainly composed of silica (sand) from the iron ore processing and contains no chemicals that pose a risk to health. The results of the analyzes requested by Samarco to SGSGeosol Laboratórios, specialized in environmental and geochemical analyzes of soil, attests that the waste from the Fundão dam offers no harm to people or the environment. Samples were collected on November 8th near Bento Rodrigues, Monsenhor Horta, Pedras, Barretos and Barra Longa, in the state of Minas Gerais, and were analyzed according to the Brazilian standard NBR 10004:2004. These sites have been identified for collection for being the closest to the accident, and therefore the samples represent the best material deposited in the dam. After the analyzes, the waste at these sites has been classified as non-hazardous. This means that the analyzed material presents no harm to people and the environment, considering that it provides no contaminants to water, even in rain exposure conditions.

Has Vale deposited tailings from its mines above the Campo Grande dam's capacity?

No. Conforming Emergency Action Plan Document Mining Dam (PAEBM) (access the document here – Portuguese only), filed with the competent organs, its design capacity is 23.5 Mm3 and currently, the dam occupies a 19.59 Mm3 volume. Therefore, the Campo Grande dam is not saturated.

This waste transfer activity is licensed?

The waste transfer activity for Samarco is licensed since 1994 for the Corrective Operational License of Alegria Mine, COPAM process number 182/87/03/94. This license has been subjected to successive revalidation, as required by current environmental legislation in Minas Gerais. Licences are issued by COPAM (State Environmental Policy Council of the State of Minas Gerais). In this environmental license, was expected that Vale could waste on new Samarco’s structures that were to be built. The responsibility for licensing for the disposal of waste in the Fundão Dam is Samarco’s. Access here the license issued (Portuguese only).

What amount of waste from its mines has been deposited by Vale in Samarco dams?

In 2014, Vale sent to Samarco the amount of 1,005,581 tons of waste from the Alegria mine, in Minas Gerais. This amount represents 4.4722% of the total amount deposited in the dam Fundão between January 2014 and December 2014. Click here to access the Samarco Financial bill (Portuguese only).

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