Awani Review

Complete News World

£10bn lawsuit in UK over environmental disaster in Brazil

£10bn lawsuit in UK over environmental disaster in Brazil

Posted on Thursday, December 22, 2022 at 3:08 pm.

From April 2024, Britain’s Justice Department will examine a joint complaint seeking billions of pounds from Australian miner BHP over a 2015 waste dam failure in Brazil that killed 19 people.

BHP was targeted because it was a co-owner with Brazilian group Vale of Samarco, the Brazilian mining company that manages the iron ore tailings dam that collapsed on November 5, 2015.

The event caused a disaster that is considered the worst environmental tragedy in Brazil’s history.

More than 200,000 plaintiffs, including the Grenoble tribe, have already been involved in the action, said firm Boguest Goodhead.

Welcoming the win after four years of proceedings, the company says it is the largest group case ever examined by a civil court in the UK.

In total, the company notes that the sums sought from the company by more than 400,000 plaintiffs could exceed 10 billion pounds (11.4 billion euros), compared to the estimated 5 billion pounds in damages when the complaint was first filed.

The start date of the trial, whose hearings are scheduled to last eight weeks, is “set for April 9, 2024,” the High Court announced in a ruling issued on Wednesday and consulted by AFP.

“Now is the time to avoid further delays and make substantial progress in resolving the dispute,” the judge said.

A dam broke near the city of Mariana in Minas Gerais state, releasing a massive mudslide that completely submerged the village of Bento Rodríguez, killing 19 people and leaving more than 600 residents homeless.

See also  Eddie Jones wants to coach Australia but is waiting for assurances

This flow spread through the bed of the Rio Dos River for 650 kilometers to the Atlantic Ocean. In its path, it killed thousands of animals, destroyed protected rainforests, and left 280,000 people without water.

It was a “procedural decision” that had “nothing to do with the merits of the operation in the United Kingdom,” London- and Sydney-listed BHP Group responded in a statement to AFP on Thursday.

The company “fully opposes the claims and will defend itself” in the case, which it believes is unnecessary in other ongoing legal proceedings in Brazil.