Loss of life on ‘Rio Doce’ down to BHP Billiton

Los Justos – The Righteous – Lamed Wufniks
Un hombre que cultiva su jardín, como quería Voltaire
A man who cultivates his garden, as Voltaire wished
El que agradece que en la tierra haya música
He who is grateful for the existence of music
El que descubre con placer una etimología
He who takes pleasure an etymology
Dos empleados que en un café del Sur juegan un silencioso ajedrez
Two employees South in coffee play a silent game of chess
El ceramista que premedita un color y una forma
The potter, contemplating a color and form
El tipógrafo que compone bien esta página, que tal vez no le agrada
The typographer who sets this page well, maybe not like
Una mujer y un hombre que leen los tercetos finales de cierto canto
A woman and a man who read the final triplets of a song
El que acaricia a un animal dormido
The patting a sleeping animal
El que justifica o quiere justificar un mal que le han hecho
He who justifies, or wishes evil they have done
El que agradece que en la tierra haya Stevenson
He who is grateful for the existence of Stevenson
El que prefiere que los otros tengan razón
He who prefers others to be right
Esas personas, que se ignoran, están salvando el mundo
These people, unaware, are saving the world
– Jorge Luis Borges

“A dam holding back water from an iron ore mine near Mariana, Brazil, has burst. Officials say one person is confirmed dead. But there are reports that up to 16 have died and others are missing.

Authorities have warned that the water mixed with residue from mining operations could be toxic.” BBC report.

Comment on media coverage:

“When the video tells that the main causes of the disruption is not clear, it is giving a misleading information (a la Brazilian news mode), since it is a fact that there were technical documents pointing out that the dam was not in proper physical conditions to operate. Even being noticed from Brazilian authorities about the technical problems, Samarco (Owned mainly by VALE and BHP Billiton) have continued its operations in this area. This episode is an affront to all Brazilians, specially the ones from Minas Gerais.

It is a clear case of neglecting environment in order to maximize profits (1 Billion U$$ in 2014). Our Rio Doce (Sweet River) is lost in in mud and environmentalists argue that it will take at least 100 years to mitigate this environment impact. I am here to expose my deepest level of sadness and I hope that this kind of things will never happen again in my country or any other.” — Luan Leão Glória

The immediate effects are palpable, the loss of the life, the destruction of towns, the shortage of clean water to drink, the riots in the streets … all of these are bad enough but the long term effects are incalculable.

Ian Curr
27 Nov 2015

Raw footage of the disaster:

Ian Curr
26 Nov 2015

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