Author Topic: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES  (Read 65095 times)

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Offline Teylar Ta Palulukankelku

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #920 on: February 03, 2014, 02:43:09 am »
Dammit  >:(! Faysawtute akawng.

When is the dam predicted to be finished? Feels like it's been under construction for quite a while now and i'm guessing it's nearing completion  :-\.
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Offline Toruk Makto

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #921 on: February 03, 2014, 12:28:38 pm »
It has a ways to go yet. Of course, it is only the beginning.

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #922 on: February 03, 2014, 04:11:29 pm »
A big dam like Belo Monte (which is actually a complex of dams and dikes) takes many years to build. If you look at the dimensions involved, these are massive structures.

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #923 on: February 19, 2014, 03:42:44 pm »
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 19, 2013
 
Contact:
Brent Millikan: +55 61 8153 7009, [email protected]
Leticia Leite: + 55 61 8112 6258, [email protected]
Christian Poirier: +33 770381 849, [email protected]



Belo Monte Construction Intensifies Conflicts with Indigenous Peoples

Requirements to mitigate impacts remain unmet;
Indigenous peoples call for immediate suspension of construction


Altamira, Brazil – As the hurried construction of the controversial Belo Monte mega-dam nears 50% completion on the Amazon's Xingu River, a new report revealed that more than 80% of legally required actions to mitigate project impacts on indigenous peoples and their territories are mired in noncompliance. The report coincides with renewed protests among local indigenous groups over the failure of the Norte Energia (NESA) dam consortium and federal government agencies to fulfill legal obligations to protect their lands and livelihoods from the devastating impacts unleashed by Belo Monte.

According to the report by the Brazilian NGO Socio-Environmental Institute (ISA) –which cites official information published by regulatory agencies that take part in the licensing process- only 15% of key actions to ensure the territorial rights of indigenous peoples affected by Belo Monte have been effectively implemented, citing grave negligence on the part of the NESA dam consortium and government agencies. This includes demarcation, enforcement and removal of illegal occupants on their tribal lands. As a result, indigenous lands have become increasingly vulnerable to illegal logging, hunting, fishing and deforestation for cattle pasture – pressures on natural resources that have been greatly intensified by the construction of Belo Monte.

Despite neglecting its legal responsibilities, NESA expects to receive a definitive operating licensing from IBAMA for Belo Monte by mid-2014.

"Indigenous territories and protected areas are important sections of forest, rich in biodiversity, which suffer immense pressure from the arrival of large projects like Belo Monte," said ISA lawyer Biviany Rojas. "Measures to protect these territories should be preventive in their nature, before the start of expected impacts. To leave protective measures and territorial surveillance until after damage is done risks their losing meaning and effectiveness."

According to a declaration issued last week by nine indigenous groups, one of the most serious examples of negligence in Belo Monte concerns a formal agreement between NESA and the federal indigenous agency FUNAI, guaranteeing financial resources for an action plan to mitigate impacts on indigenous peoples. The agreement was to have been signed by July 2011, but three years after the beginning of the dam construction it still doesn't exist. In the meantime, NESA created a scaled-down "operational plan" without indigenous participation.

"Our principal demand is that Brazil's judicial order be respected, that the law be followed," states a letter from indigenous leadership. "Norte Energia doesn't lack technical capacity, money, or political influence to implement [mitigation measures]. What it lacks is will, interest, and respect for indigenous peoples and the law."

The ISA report also notes that NESA has neglected its obligations to strengthen the institutional presence of FUNAI in the Xingu region, for the agency to fulfill its constitutional mission to protect indigenous peoples and their lands, which includes monitoring the implementation of Belo Monte. Due to a lack of institutional capacity, FUNAI has not issued a monitoring report on Belo Monte since May 2013; meanwhile, the federal environmental agency IBAMA has dismissed the indigenous component of its bi-annual evaluations of Belo Monte as "non-pertinent."

After occupying NESA headquarters in the city of Altamira for nearly a week, indigenous protestors demanded a meeting with NESA, FUNAI president Maria Augusta Assirati and other authorities. At the meeting held in Altamira on February 14th, representatives of the nine tribes called on FUNAI to immediate revoke its endorsement of Belo Monte's installation license. A local representative of Brazil Federal Public Prosecutors Office, also in attendance, supported the demand. Assirati responded by promising that FUNAI will sign a satisfactory agreement with NESA by mid-March, two and a half years overdue, or the agency will adopt "much harsher" measures.


More information:

    ISA press release on report
    ISA press release and videos about the February 14th meeting in Altamira
    Indigenous peoples declaration
    amazonwatch.org
    internationalrivers.org
    socioambiental.org
    xinguvivo.org.br

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Offline Toruk Makto

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #924 on: March 11, 2014, 12:22:49 pm »
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 11, 2013
 
Contact:
Brent Millikan, +55 61 8153 7009, [email protected]
Christian Poirier, +33 770381 849, [email protected]
Maria José Veramendi, 1 (415) 684-3803, [email protected]

 

Indigenous Leader Condemns Brazil's Rights Abuses at United Nations
Speakers highlight violations stemming from Amazon dams at Human Rights Council

Geneva, Switzerland – In a groundbreaking event at the 25th United Nations Human Rights Council, the national coordinator of Brazil's Association of Indigenous Peoples (APIB) Sônia Guajajara exposed an alarming disregard for indigenous peoples' rights by the Brazilian government as it rushes to promote an unprecedented wave of large dam construction across the Amazon basin with devastating impacts on their territories and livelihoods. In her testimony, Ms. Guajajara argued that the violation of indigenous rights to prior consultations concerning the federal government's dam-building plans has set a troubling precedent for the rule of law and the future of Brazil's indigenous peoples.

The side event, entitled 'Indigenous peoples' right to consultation on large dam projects in Brazil', also featured Alexandre Andrade Sampaio, a Brazilian lawyer with the Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA), who critiqued the use of a legal mechanism known as "Security Suspension" (Suspensão de Segurança) that allows chief justices, upon request from the government, to indefinitely suspend legal rulings in favor of indigenous peoples' rights based on allegations of supposed threats to national security. Among the most egregious use of this legal artifice that was originally created during Brazil's military dictatorship, is the suspension of court decisions on the illegality of large hydroelectric dam projects, such as Belo Monte, where the federal government has failed to ensure indigenous peoples' right to prior consultations, as enshrined in the Brazilian constitution. According to Sampaio, the Security Suspension also constitutes an obstacle to Brazil's compliance with international agreements concerning free, prior, and informed consultation and consent (FPIC), including Convention 169 of the International Labor Organization ILO), ratified by the Brazilian Congress in 2002, and the 2007 UN Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

"The alliance of economic interests and political power represent a major crisis for the implementation of indigenous rights in today's Brazil," said Ms. Guajajara. "However, the government cannot deny its responsibility to the Brazilian Constitution, nor to international conventions."

"Clearly, the Security Suspension violates human rights. However, the very people that could dismiss it are the same ones who personally benefit from its existence," said Mr. Sampaio. "That is why it is important for the international community to turn its eyes to this matter and request the Brazilian government adopt effective measures that lead to the respect of human rights."

Joint declarations were submitted to the UN General Assembly by a coalition of Brazilian and international groups, including France Libertes (Fondation Danielle Mitterrand). In discussing growing threats to indigenous rights, both documents highlight the Brazilian government's plans to build a massive complex of up to 29 large dams along the Amazon's Tapajós River and its tributaries in the next ten years. Lesser-known than the controversial Belo Monte project on the neighboring Xingu River, the Tapajós complex would provoke flooding and other devastating consequences for indigenous peoples and other traditional populations both upstream and downstream of planned dams, including elimination of migratory fish that are a dietary stable and a basis of local economies. The federal government's rush to construct a series of large dams in the Tapajós region, in the absence of prior consultations with indigenous peoples, has led to growing protests from local tribes, such as the Munduruku, Kayabi and Apiaká people.

"We are watching a dark history repeat itself on the rivers of the Amazon where Belo Monte's tragedy threatens to be reproduced on the Tapajós," said Christian Poirier of Amazon Watch. "While the Brazilian government claims to respect its indigenous peoples, it is in fact working to dismantle their rights to open their lands and rivers to unconstrained exploitation."

Prior to the side event the delegates met with Ambassador Regina Dunlop of Brazil's Permanent Mission to the United Nations in order to present their grievances. While the Ambassador stated that the information would be more relevant if presented to government representatives in Brasilia, Ms. Guajajara and Mr. Sampaio countered that these criticisms are frequently ignored by government decision makers until problems are exposed in international forums, such as the United Nations.

"Brazil's reputation is at stake on this international stage," said Sônia Guajajara. "We are here to bring visibility to the unacceptable prejudice and discrimination suffered by indigenous peoples and to demand that it stops."

The side event in Geneva was organized by France Liberté (Fondation Danielle Mitterand) with support from Amazon Watch and International Rivers.


More information:

    Joint statement submitted by France Libertés, APIB and other groups on large dams and violations of indigenous peoples' rights
    Joint statement submitted by France Libertes and other groups on the right of indigenous peoples to consultation about major development projects
    amazonwatch.org
    internationalrivers.org
    aida-americas.org

 
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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #925 on: March 25, 2014, 01:16:11 pm »
This film is almost 2 years old, but still tells it like it is.


« Last Edit: March 25, 2014, 01:20:28 pm by Toruk Makto »

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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #926 on: May 27, 2014, 11:33:46 am »
All you need to know about the current state of the Belo Monte dam:

http://arte.folha.uol.com.br/especiais/2013/12/16/belo-monte/en/


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Re: Belo Monte Dam in Brazil - WITH UPDATES
« Reply #927 on: October 01, 2015, 01:32:00 pm »
Belo Monte dam denied operating license by Brazilian regulators

http://news.mongabay.com/2015/09/belo-monte-dam-denied-operating-license-by-brazilian-regulators/



The flooding of the Belo Monte dam reservoir in Brazil appeared to be imminent just a week ago, despite calls from the Xingu Alive Forever Movement and its allies worldwide for Brazil’s environmental agency, IBAMA, to halt licensing of the project.

Last Tuesday, IBAMA did just that. According to Brazilian newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo, the agency made the decision not to issue an operating license to Norte Energia, the consortium of 10 Brazilian energy companies and investment funds that built the dam, due to at least a dozen violations of its agreement to complete projects intended to mitigate the impacts of inundating thousands of acres of Brazilian Amazon.

According to Oakland, CA-based Amazon Watch, IBAMA licensing director Thomaz Miazaki cited “pending obligations” that remain unfulfilled by the consortium in denying the operating license, including basic sanitation, health, and resettlement projects, as well as a series of bridges that would allow displaced peoples to cross the dam’s artificial waterways, that haven’t been completed.

Norte Energia had been anticipating approval of the license by mid-September and preparing the region for the deluge to come by demolishing neighborhoods in the city of Altamira and clearcutting more than 400 islands in the Xingu River. Earlier this year, federal prosecutors in Brazil found Norte Energia violated 55 different obligations it had agreed to in order to guarantee the survival of indigenous groups, farmers and fishermen whose homes and lands will be lost.

The Belo Monte dam is the third-largest hydroelectric project in the world, with an installed capacity of generating 11,000 megawatts of electricity — though the flow of Amazon rivers varies so much between seasons that it will generate a fraction of that for several months out of the year.

Building the dam required diverting the flow of the Xingu River, one of the Amazon’s major tributaries. If and when the reservoir is flooded, it will inundate such an extensive area of the Brazilian rainforest that as many as 20,000 people could be displaced and whole tribal cultures could be lost, according to Berkeley, CA-based International Rivers.

In August, Brazil’s national human rights council voted unanimously to advise IBAMA to withhold the operating license, based on Norte Energia’s human rights violations and failure to fulfill obligations it was contractually bound to meet. IBAMA said it would withhold the licence until the consortium had completed the required mitigation projects.

In response to the latest setback for the project, José Anchieta, director of socio-environmental affairs at Norte Energia, told the Guardian that the issues IBAMA had raised were minor, saying, “I am not worried about this at all. Tomorrow we will meet with Ibama and we will soon resolve these details.”

Brent Millikan, Amazon program director for International Rivers, thinks it could take a bit longer to resolve the matter if regulators don’t back down. “If Ibama is serious about the consortium implementing all the conditionalities of the project, we could be in for a significant delay,” Millikan said.

Amazon Watch’s Brazil Program Coordinator, Maíra Irigaray, told Mongabay in an email that the denial of an operating license to the Belo Monte dam is a big victory and should be celebrated, but that if history is any guide, the decision is likely to be overturned.

“There is no chance that the Brazilian government would back down at this point after so much money invested in this project,” Irigaray said, “which is very unfortunate, since it affects the future of the rainforest and so, the future of all of us on the planet.”

 - Mongabay Article published by Mike Gaworecki on September 25, 2015

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