PF demobilizes illegal mining that pollute rivers in Pará

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The Federal Police (PF) carried out on Wednesday (31) an operation in Pará, called “Águas Turvas”, which demobilized illegal mining that would be polluting the rivers that supply the municipality of Parauapebas, in the Southeast of the state.

The illegal mines are located near the Cupu and Rio Verde rivers, and are tributaries of the Parauapebas river. According to the PF, various equipment and heavy machinery were seized and rendered useless, and 14 search and seizure warrants were carried out in the region of the Cristalino Project, which is in the municipality of Canaã dos Carajás (PA), in a municipal secretariat and in the of an unnamed secretary.

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According to the PF, gold extraction had been taking place for several months, close to a power transmission line, which could affect, in the event of a blackout, entire regions of Brazil. A tunnel built below a gold extraction tower was abandoned shortly before the operation.

The action was possible because the Autonomous Water and Sewage Service of Parauapebas (Saaep), which analyzes the quality of the water that supplies the city, detected the contamination of tributaries of the Parauapebas River and communicated to the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation (ICMBio ) and the Municipality of Parauapebas.

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As a result, the company had to increase the amount of products used for water treatment by more than 70%. A public hearing was held in Parauapebas in June, where the situation was narrated.

Representatives of the Legislature and the Executive discovered that the contamination came from mining activity in the neighboring municipality of Canaã dos Carajás, and the inspection tried to find the source of the problem, but it was allegedly hampered by one of the secretaries of Canaã dos Carajás.

Based on a crime report sent by ICMBio demonstrating the devastation caused by illegal gold extraction areas, the PF opened the investigation.

Several overflights carried out along the river made it possible to identify the existence of numerous machines, such as backhoes and trucks, in addition to several points of illegal extraction of ores, mainly gold and, to a lesser extent, copper, and the change in the color of the rivers, indicating intense of mining.

Those involved can answer for environmental crimes, usurpation of Union resources and criminal association. The operation, which is still ongoing, has the participation of more than 100 agents from the Federal Police, the Federal Highway Police, the National Mining Agency (ANM), the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (Ibama), and the ICMBio.

Source: CNN Brasil

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