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22 July 2010 | |

Deep Waters

Cargill denounced for impacts on grain port in Brazil

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The Pastoral Land Commission (CPT) from Brazil submitted on July 14th to the Federal Public Ministry and the Environment Secretary of Para State a report that shows the impacts caused by Cargill´s grain port in Santarem.

El sitio de la CPT explica que los documentos son el resultado de un monitoreo de las organizaciones locales que se opusieron a su instalación, y que ese seguimiento se efectuó durante los últimos siete años, o sea todo el tiempo de funcionamiento que lleva la terminal portuaria.

The CPT´s website explains that the reports are the result of the monitoring by local organizations which opposed the building of the port, and followed the operation of the port since its creation, seven years ago.

During this time, according to Adital news agency, Cargill´s port worked without the necessary Environmental Impact Assessment and without the public hearings required.

The legal action brought by the social organizations against seed multinational company Cargill, with headquarters in Minnesota, US, is based on the fact that the port was built without taking into account Brazilian laws and has resulted in the displacement of rural communities dedicated to family agriculture until the arrival of soy.

The CPT quotes the Santarem Rural Workers Union and states that 500 families abandoned their lands as a consequence of the expansion of soy in Santarem.

"One of the main threats to the Amazon is the contamination of the water sources", they state with reference to the increase in the use of agrotoxic products.

In addition, the authorities have not been controlling activities in Cargill´s port, and in some way have "legalized" a crime against peoples who are "endangered". Another consequence is the increase of violence, including death threats against religious authorities who have denounced the impacts of soy monocultures.

"Cargill is much more than a grain port built in the only beach in Santarem. It is a threat to the life in the Amazon", they conclude.

Photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rockopsc/

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