Uranium mining in Caetite, Brazil

<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns">The project consists basically in the mining and milling of uranium in the municipality of Caetite, Bahia state, Brazil. The method of uranium extraction is open-pit mining and the milling process is lixiviation in piles. All mined uranium is to be used domestically, after conversion and enrichment abroad (Canada and Netherlands, respectively). The amount of uranium explored is sufficient to supply the two Brazilian nuclear power plants currently in operation. This case involves workplace accidents, tailing spills, potential soil and water contamination, and uncertain risks (e.g. cancer) to the health of the workers and the population which lives in the surrounded area of the mine. <br/><br/></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Uranium mining in Caetite, Brazil</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/brazil">Brazil</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Bahia</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Caetite</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>HIGH local level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Nuclear</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Mineral ore exploration<br /> Land acquisition conflicts<br /> Uranium extraction<br /> Mineral processing</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/uranium'>Uranium</a><br /></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns">The reserves are estimated at 100,000 tons of pure uranium oxide, without others minerals of interest associated to it. The production capacity of uranium concentrate (yellowcake) is 400 tons/year. But, considering that more nuclear plants are planned in the National Energy Plan 2030, the goal for the next few years is to duplicate production of yellowcake to 800 tons/year. <br/><br/></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>130000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Unknown</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/nuclear-industries'>Nuclear Industries <small>(INB)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/brazil'><small>Brazil</small></a> - <small> which is connected to the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Brazil.</small></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources , Institute of Water Management and Climate of Bahia , Nuclear Energy National Commission (CNEN).</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">International and Financial Institutions</td><td><a href='/institution/international-atomic-energy-agency'>International Atomic Energy Agency <small>(IAEA)</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Associacao Movimento Paulo Jackson – Etica, Justica, Cidadania (AMPJ); Greenpeace Brasil; Grupo Ambientalista da Bahia (GAMBA); Comissao Paroquial de Meio Ambiente de Caetite; Comissao Pastoral da Terra (CPT); Plataforma Dhesca Brasil</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>UNKNOWN</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Farmers<br /> Indigenous groups or traditional communities<br /> Industrial workers<br /> International ejos<br /> Local ejos<br /> Neighbours/citizens/communities<br /> Social movements<br /> Trade unions<br /> Ethnically/racially discriminated groups</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Blockades<br /> Community-based participative research (popular epidemiology studies, etc..)<br /> Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Development of a network/collective action<br /> Involvement of national and international NGOs<br /> Media based activism/alternative media<br /> Objections to the EIA<br /> Official complaint letters and petitions<br /> Street protest/marches</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Air pollution, Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Waste overflow, Oil spills, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Desertification/Drought</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Accidents, Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Occupational disease and accidents, Infectious diseases<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide, Violence related health impacts (homicides, rape, etc..) , Other environmental related diseases</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Displacement, Increase in violence and crime, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>In operation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Criminalization of activists<br /> Migration/displacement<br /> Repression<br /> Under negotiation<br /> Violent targeting of activists</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Legislations</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Lei Nacional de Recursos Hidricos (Water Resources Act) Lei numero 9.433, 8 de janeiro de 1997.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Constitution of the Federative Republic of Brazil<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> GREENPEACE. O Ciclo do Perigo: Impactos da producao de combustivel nuclear no Brasil. Sao Paulo, Greenpeace Brasil, 2008.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> DHESCA BRASIL. Relatorio da Missao Caetite: Violacoes dos Direitos Humanos no Ciclo do Nuclear. 2011.<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Mapa da Injustica Ambiental e Saude no Brasil: <br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.conflitoambiental.icict.fiocruz.br/index.php?pag=fichaandcod=29" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Comments</td><td>It is also important to mention that there is a brutal case of conflict of interests concerning the regulatory system of the Brazilian nuclear sector, because the most important agency to control radioactive activities is CNEN (Nuclear Energy National Commission), which is at the same time the most important shareholder of INB.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Renan Finamore</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>08/04/2014</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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