Norsk Hydro accused of Amazon toxic spill, admits ‘clandestine pipeline’

Flooding at the Norske Hydro Alunorte facility following heavy rains in February. Photo by Instituo Evandro Chagas Norsk Hydro, a bauxite and aluminum mining and refining company also known as “Hydro” whose majority and controlling shareholder is the Norwegian government, has been accused by the Brazilian government of a toxic waste spill from holding basins at its Hydro Alunorte facility. The operation, located in Barcarena municipality, Pará state, near the mouth of the Amazon River, is the largest aluminum refining plant in the world. The company denies responsibility for any spill, but says it is cooperating fully with officials. Also last week, Norsk Hydro was accused of possessing a “clandestine pipeline to discharge untreated effluent” into a set of Muripi River Springs in a report by the Evandro Chagas Institute of Brazil’s Ministry of Health. The Norwegian mining giant at first denied this accusation, then admitted to it. “During one of the inspections, there was a pipeline with a small flow of reddish water in the refinery area,” the company says. “As requested by the authorities, the company is making the necessary investigations to identify the origin and nature of the material, as well as carrying out the immediate sealing of this pipeline.” The Norske Hydro Alunorte facility tailings basin that Brazilian officials say overflowed. Photo by Amazonia Real found on Twitter Norsk Hydro spill under investigation Major storms on February 16 and 17 allegedly caused Norsk Hydro’s toxic holding basin to overflow, resulting in contamination of water used by Bom…

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South Africa Today – Environment

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