By Catarina Barbosa
From the Brasil de Fato
Auctions that would allow for the exploration of the Amazon’s mineral resources and grant logistics and infrastructure licenses, are set to be held this year. The proposal by the Federal government is part of the Partnerships and Investments Program (PPI).
According to the director of the Movement for the People’s Sovereignty Over Mining (MAM), Márcio Zonta, the initiative by the Jair Bolsonaro government reveals the fact that the Amazon is at the center of the international financial system. There are eight projects in total on the 2020 agenda, spread out through various parts of the Northern region, with a wide array of minerals to be exploited.
“They aim to plunder the Amazon even more. If we understand the role the Amazon has in the world, and understand which minerals are extracted, currently in this region, we have two main things standing out: the first is that the Brazilian Amazon regulates the international gold financial system, reliant above all on the illegal trade, and this applies to other minerals in the region like copper and iron”, he summarized.
The social movement coordinator highlights that copper and iron, are the raw material used in a wide variety of technologies, ranging from the arms industry, to the automotive, as well as the telecommunications industry, 5g technology, and the so-called the “superfluous industry”.
“The latter are things with no social functionality, but that require lots of minerals to produce: cellphones, software, regardless of what, the Amazon is a constant supply of these raw mateirals, that are then used for the primitive accumulation of capital, through the production of these consumer goods”, he added.
According to information from the federal government, the areas that are up for grabs are not under conservation, nor on native reservations. Beyond the mining related auctions, there will be the granting of licenses for the installation of energy cables in the state of Amazonas, worth more than 1.5 billion dollars and extending over 2,5 thousand kilometers.
Zonta points out however, that the damages caused to all Brazilians by mining activities are innumerable, above all, for local communities.
*Edited by Rodrigo Chagas
**Translated by Ítalo Piva