Canadian firm’s proposed gold mine in Amazon rainforest a step closer to reality, CEO says – by Chris Arsenault (CBC News World – March 28, 2021)

A Canadian company is one step closer to building a controversial gold mine in the Amazon rainforest, after its study on how the development would impact remote Indigenous people was approved by Brazilian officials, the CEO of Belo Sun Mining told CBC News.

FUNAI, the Brazilian government body responsible for handling issues related to Indigenous people and their land rights, has approved the company’s consultation plans for the Volta Grande gold project, said CEO Peter Tagliamonte.

The approval is the most recent salvo in a series of long-running disputes between different Brazilian authorities and the Toronto-based company over what Belo Sun calls the largest undeveloped gold project in Brazil.

The proposed project in one of Earth’s most biodiverse regions has long been a flash point for environmentalists.

They say the proposed mine in northeastern Para state is likely to contaminate the rainforest with cyanide and other toxic chemicals from its tailings dam — a problem that has ravaged other Brazilian mining regions in recent years, killing hundreds of people.

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