Grupo Mexico is involved in 22 environmental accidents

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The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Semarnat) and the Federal Office of Environmental Protection (Profepa) analyze 22 environmental accidents in which Grupo México, owned by Germán Larrea, has been involved in order to determine the sanctions that the company could have. the second richest man in the country.

In a press conference to publicize the Declaration of Restoration of the Endhó Dam, in Hidalgo, the secretary Victor Manuel Toledo Manzúr warned that, with the negative trajectory of the company, “Semarnat would have the legal capacity to suspend the industry “, Because it’s been two decades since 1998, when it started operating, in which it does not comply with maintaining its facilities and processes. “It is an inadmissible situation.”

However, he ruled out long-term effects on the spill of 3 thousand liters of sulfuric acid in the Sea of ​​Cortez a week ago. “I’m not going to refer to the specific case because apparently it does not have and will not have more effect, what I’m going to refer to is that this is the 22nd accident of Grupo México since 1998, not only in the country but in countries like Peru ; Tucson, Arizona (United States) and Spain, “said the secretary.

For its part, the Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection, Blanca Mendoza, said that the necessary acts of authority have been carried out. 

“This spill occurred on the 9th and on the 10th, Profepa, through its delegation in the state of Sonora, began an inspection visit that aims to legally determine what the responsibilities incurred by the company may be with reason of the spill and, where appropriate, if applicable, apply the corresponding sanctions, “he said.

Mendoza Vera stressed that the penalties could be fines from 20 thousand to 4.2 million pesos, regardless of the remediation of the damages caused. Grupo Mexico has until Wednesday to present its allegations, then it will have five more days to present new arguments.

And once that process is concluded, Profepa will have a period of three months to define the sanction. The environmental attorney said that she works in conjunction with the National Water Commission and the Human Rights Commission, which initiated an ex officio procedure to publicize the damage caused by the accident at the Guaymas mine, due to the impact on the rights of the workers. population.

Buenavista del Cobre

On August 6, 2014, an accident of Grupo México caused the contamination of the Bacánuchi and Sonora rivers by the spill of 40 thousand cubic meters of acidulated copper solution from a toxic waste dam at the Buenavista del Cobre mine in Cananea. . This event is 
considered the worst environmental disaster in the history of mining in Mexico, as it left 25,000 inhabitants of seven municipalities without water for human consumption and productive activities.

Just last July 5, Semarnat delivered to the residents of Bacanuchi, Sonora, a “preventive report” on the effects of a tailings dam (toxic waste) 100 times larger than that spilled in 2014, which operates without the knowledge of the community since 2015.

Mendoza Vera informed that it analyzes the agreement that was established for the contamination of the Sonora River, the trust that was declared extinct and the different responsibilities that the company and public servants had. He added that among the faculties of the dependency is to suspend the Environmental Impact Manifestation, with which an installation would cease to operate.

He also said that the analyzes concluded and will be presented in the next few days, but that he said there is a set of regulatory violations.

For its part, Toledo Manzúr said that Semarnat has been in consultation with the affected communities of Bacanuchi and that the company did not comply with the agreement. “We are going to carry out a very careful review of these facts and the Semarnat, will later make a declaration not only about the specific case of Guaymas, which is the last if not the 22 cases of accidents programmed by the Mexico Group, “said Toledo.

At the same conference, Semarnat announced the agreement to declare an emergency zone in the region where the Endhó dam is located, in Hidalgo, due to the high levels of contamination that are recorded.

Among the nine actions that Semarnat proposes in the agreement, they emphasize that it will seek to relate to the indigenous peoples and social organizations, as well as to provide them with the available information related to the socio-environmental problems in the area.

Citizens organize pressure against Grupo México on several fronts

Several civil organizations made a call for the purpose of demonstrating on Wednesday, July 17 at the offices of Grupo Mexico located in Hermosillo, Sonora, to express the collective annoyance over the contamination of the waters of the entity.

On the other hand, the President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, reported Monday that after the spill of three thousand liters of sulfuric acid by the same company in the northwest of the country, a report from the environmental authorities is expected and assured that if damages are confirmed, those responsible will be punished.

Grupo México, by businessman Germán Larrea, has been spilling waste and chemicals that damage the environment for years. And he never pays for his deeds. But now, citizens have organized different fronts to demand the Government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to be made to pay for recent events and those of the past.

More than three thousand 800 people demand Change.org, a platform for online petitions from any area without legal validity, that Grupo México pays for the spill of sulfuric acid on the beaches of Sonora.

While Facebook was created an event to invite people to demonstrate on Wednesday, July 17 at the offices of Grupo Mexico, located in the La Manga neighborhood of the municipality of Hermosillo, Sonora.

The Sonoran Network of Support to the National Indigenous Council and feminist groups like Nosotras Colectiva and Pan y Rosas made the call with the purpose of expressing the collective annoyance due to the pollution of the Sonoran waters and requesting the withdrawal of the concession of this company.

” Grupo México was also the cause of the intoxication of the Sonora River, which has caused irreparable damage to the environment and human life. Let’s not allow this to happen again, “said participant Valeria Valenzuela.

“These are just the first consequences of the stupidity of Grupo México and its spill in Guaymas. If we do not stop this criminal and ecocidal company, they will end everything, “reads the MariChuy Support Network and the CIG Sonora.

The call comes just a few days after the failure of one of the valves at the Maritime Terminal of Guaymas, Sonora, of Grupo México, whose owner is Germán Larrea, caused the spill of three thousand liters of sulfuric acid in the waters of the Cuts.

On July 10, the company led by Larrea reported in a statement that the spill caused no harm to any person and stated that attention measures were applied and the situation was quickly controlled.

“Today at our Maritime Terminal in Guaymas, at approximately 3:00 PM an event occurred that caused the discharge of sulfuric acid due to the failure of a valve that caused the release of 3 (three) m3 of the tank that receives the purges of the shipping lines, “said Grupo México.

The company said that it had notified the Guaymas Integral Port Administration (API) and the Ministry of the Navy, a dependency that was present at the site and when it found that the situation was under control, it was not necessary to activate an emergency plan.

“Since yesterday [July 8] is proceeding with the transfer of acid from the container to a pipe and is already working on neutralizing the solution,” explained Grupo Mexico.

The general manager of API Guaymas, Abraham Larios Velázquez, confirmed to  Mileni or that the spill was due to a leak in the valves and detailed that Grupo México personnel closed the valves and started re-pumping activities to prevent a significant amount of sulfuric acid it will spill, but the substance did reach the sea.

“Grupo México is responsible for this failure and the eventual damages should be repaired as soon as possible by that company,” he told the newspaper Larios Velázquez.

A video spread on social networks shows how sulfuric acid went straight to the sea.

IF THERE IS DAMAGE, THERE WILL BE PUNISHMENT: AMLO

The President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, reported Monday that after the spill of three thousand liters of sulfuric acid from the company Grupo México in the northwest of the country, a report from the environmental authorities is expected and that if damages are confirmed, those responsible will be punished.

On Tuesday, July 9, social media reported the spill at the Maritime Terminal of Guaymas, in the Sea of ​​Cortez, also known as the Gulf of California, of the company Grupo México.

In the following days, dead fish were found in addition to a sea turtle and a wolf and some lifeless pelicans, deaths attributed to pollution.

“Today I will have the report of the Secretariat (Environment and Natural Resources) and the Attorney (Federal Environmental Protection) to quantify damages and make decisions in accordance with the law,” said the president, who in recent days announced that measures would be taken.

Germán Larrea Mota Velasco, President of Grupo México, attended the meeting with the Mexican Business Council, at the Industrial Club

“If damages were committed, they have to be repaired and those responsible have to be punished, but I want to have the report and the report,” he added.

He noted that in his government “there is no influxism” and therefore “the law will be applied without considerations of any kind.”

“It is not time (before) the Government was at the service of the influential. Now the law will be respected, “he said.

In early August 2014, Mexican mining company Buenavista del Cobre, also owned by Grupo Mexico, caused a spill of 40,000 cubic meters of copper sulfate in the Sonora and Bacanuchi rivers in the Mexican state of Sonora, for which it received a fine of 1.5 million dollars in March 2015.

Regarding the 2014 spill, López Obrador said that they will review the trial, “whether it was advanced or if it was ‘shelved,’ if the file is still open and how it relates to this new spill.”

Source: piedepagina, sinembargo

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