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Roma settlements adjacent to the industrial copper plant complex Krompachy, Kosice, Slovak Republic

There is a Roma settlement adjacent to copper smelter Kovohuty Pribam, in Krompachy, Kosice. Pollution is likely to be more severe in this settlement than in the rest of the town.


The town of Krompachy is a mining town, built as large metal industry complex in the 1960s. Around 10% of Krompachy’s 8,000 inhabitants are Roma, most of whom live in two neighbourhoods, around Hornádska and Družstevná streets. There is also a water stream called Hornád  in the Hornádska street [4][1].  However, the settlement is adjacent to industrial mining copper (and other materials extraction and production) plant complex called Kovohuty Pribram, a.s copper smelter  [4] [6]. 

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Roma settlements adjacent to the industrial copper plant complex Krompachy, Kosice, Slovak Republic
Country:Slovak Republic
State or province:Košice
Location of conflict:Krompachy
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Industrial and Utilities conflicts
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Metal refineries
Specific commodities:Aluminum/Bauxite
Titanium ores
Iron ore
Project Details and Actors
Project details

On April 4th 2012 Montanwerke Brixlegg AG, Austria and as well as Kovohuty, a.s. as its subsidiary have been officially acquired by the Swiss Group UMCOR AG, through its fully owned subsidiary UMCOR Holding GmbH, Vienna. UMCOR AG is a Swiss company specialized in the trading of non ferrous metals. Kovohuty, a.s. is authorized to process the following materials: copper, bronze, brass, zinc, iron and steel waste, glass, ferrous metal filings and turnings, non-ferrous metal filings and turnings, spent catalysts containing gold, silver, rhenium, rhodium, palladium, iridium or platinum [2] [3].

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Type of populationSemi-urban
Affected Population:2000
Start of the conflict:01/01/2012
Company names or state enterprises:Kovohuty, a.s.
Relevant government actors:Mayor of Kosice
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Amnesty International
European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC)
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityLATENT (no visible organising at the moment)
Groups mobilizing:International ejos
Ethnically/racially discriminated groups
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of mobilization:Media based activism/alternative media
A scientific study to prove the contamination and pollution
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Fires, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Waste overflow, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion
Health ImpactsVisible: Accidents, Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Loss of landscape/sense of place, Violations of human rights
Project StatusIn operation
Conflict outcome / response:New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Proposal and development of alternatives:No alternatives for the Roma have been proposed yet. International NGOs both Amnesty international and European Roma Research Centre "visualise" the very serious situation of the Roma living next to the extremely big and toxic smelting industrial complex - Kovohuty Pribram, a.s copper smelter.
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:The Roma community remains living only "one step" from the Kovohuty Pribram, a.s copper smelter. The pollution of the industrial complex is very toxic and there has been 2 fires outbreaks in 2018, including batteries with lead and titanium, and other toxic materials.
Sources & Materials
References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

[1] Hančulak, J., Kurvel, T., Kupka, D., Špaldon, T., Šestinova, O.,, Findorakova, L., Fendorova, E. (2014). Influence of the Copper Smeltery in Krompachy (Slovakia) on Atmospheric Deposition. Journal of the Polish Mineral Engineering Society, p: 45-50.
[click to view]

[2] Kovohuty, a.s company official web page
[click to view]

[3] Montanwerke Brixlegg AG official web page
[click to view]

[4] A lesson in discrimination. Amnesty International

and European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC)
[click to view]

[5] Environmental inequality in Europe
[click to view]

[6] The fire of accumulators in Kovohutě Příbram
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Ksenija Hanacek ICTA-UAB
Last update29/08/2019
Conflict ID:4301
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