Police in Brazil said Thursday they have brought criminal charges against two mining companies and seven executives over a mine waste spill that buried a village and killed 17 people.Federal police accuse Brazilian iron ore giant Vale, mine operator Samarco and company officials including Samarco's chief executive, Ricardo Vescovi, of violating Brazil's environmental crimes law in connection with the disastrous November 5 collapse of a waste reservoir.
Brazil's deadly mining disaster could cost Vale SA at least US$443 million, but it is too early to put a price tag on what it expects to be a long clean-up from the pollution spilled when the toxic dam burst.
Brazil's federal and state governments plan to sue the owners of the Samarco iron ore-miner for 20 billion Reais ($7.2 billion) in damages caused by the burst of a tailings dam, Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira told reporters on Friday.
Australian mining giant BHP says mud spilled by the devastating collapse of a dam at a Brazilian mine is not toxic. On Thursday the UN said the dam burst at the Samarco mine unleashed a flood equivalent to 20,000 Olympic swimming pools of toxic mud.
A BHP Billiton and Vale joint venture in Brazil is facing its first civil lawsuit over the dam collapse at its iron ore mine on November 5 that buried a town and contaminated the region's main river.
Investors continued to dump shares in mining giant BHP Billiton Ltd. following the deadly dam burst last week at its jointly owned iron-ore mine in Brazil, even as the company sought to clarify responsibility for the disaster that has already claimed the lives of three people.
Mud and wastewater from burst dams at a Brazilian iron ore mine cut off drinking water and raised health and environmental concerns in cities more than 300 km downstream on Monday, amid increasingly dire search efforts in a village devastated by the mudslides.
Brazilian authorities are still struggling to determine what caused the rupture in dams at an iron ore mine and desperately working to recover the bodies of as many as 28 people believed to have been swept away in the massive mudflow and flood.
Brazil’s Vale Doce, the world's second-largest miner, expects to overcome obstacles that prompted management to re-assess a 3 billion dollars potash project in the Argentine province of Mendoza, the company's head of fertilizers, Roger Downey, said.
A business mission of 53 companies organised by the Brazilian government plans to begin a tour of Mozambique, Angola and South Africa on 21 November, an Apex-Brasil official said in Sao Paulo.