In doubt the remediation of Minera Mexico

Document reveals that it was the own minera who presented the analysis and the studies

By La Orquesta

An official document from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, issued in September last year, puts into doubt  the remediation work carried out by Industrial Minera Mexico on 150 contaminated hectares in the west of the capital of Potosí. According to Semarnat, the analyzes and laboratory samples recorded during the remediation process were prepared by the company itself and therefore, the dependency points out, can be «deficient or false».

Therefore, the federation points out in the official letter DGGIMAR710 / 008283 that it is not responsible for the persistence of contaminants in the site, since the remediation program was carried out under the information provided by Industrial Minera México.

The document is signed by César Murillo Juárez, general director of Integral Management of Materials and Risky Activities of Semarnat dated September 2, 2016, and was received in San Luis Potosí 12 days later.
Despite the evidence that both the miner and the state authorities knew the conclusions of the document, in July 2017 the state administration endorsed the completion of the remediation work on the metallurgical complex of the copper plant, which they called «a national example «During an event headed by the owner of Semarnat, Rafael Pacchiano Alamán and the governor of the state, Juan Manuel Carreras López.

In the document, which consists of 65 pages, it is also recognized by IMMSA and Semarnat that the remediation request responds to a proven «contamination of the site with Lead, Arsenic, Selenium, Vanadium and Cadmium» metals and heavy semi-metals which form poisonous compounds according to their chemical classification.

This contamination is the result of the operation of its Zinc, Arsenic and Copper plants for more than one hundred years in the capital of Potosina and consequently the document or office of response regarding remediation warns in the sixth number of its conclusions that:

«It will have to allocate the areas that were highly contaminated with Arsenic to a use in which there will not be in the future a contact of the population directly with the soil»

The experts agree. For Germán Santacruz, Researcher Professor of the Water and Society Program of the College of San Luis (COLSAN), «It is not advisable in any remediation area to install any settlement of people», and mentioned in newspaper reports that it is never possible to put a site, where a chemical or mining company is installed, under the same conditions as before: «it is not achieved despite the remediation, at least not 100 percent.»

He also explained that you can not put at the same level where the area or the site was before mining or chemical activities, some landfill, or companies of any turn, that its activity involves mining and modifying the area where agrees, precisely the remediation speaks of having to leave the place at least in the same condition as it was originally, but that, he said, is never achieved.

In the analysis of the document, it also draws attention that the «remediation» program did not reach the entire area that was initially recognized as contaminated, and that amount to just over 600 hectares, since the plan presented by Semarnat and Minera Mexico announced that the end of its remediation plan only covered 151 hectares according to what was registered in the log 09 / 12-0425 / 10/12

The 600 hectares are located between the west side, a few meters from the Villa Magna and Horizontes subdivisions, the Oro street that goes down from the periphery to the Morales neighborhood and the Río Santiago Boulevard.

Just in that area, the Industrial Minera Mexico plans in the coming years to execute the «Plan San Luis» a housing and commercial project supporting its viability in a remediation plan that does not recognize the federal authority, that having carried it out does not mean that the soil stopped being contaminated according to the specialists and that also the own interested company made the studies and provided the samples so that his, today in doubt, plan of remediation was validated.

«The technical evaluation of this administrative unit to determine the approval of the conclusion of the remediation program … was made under the information provided by IMMSA, so this Secretariat will not be responsible for the persistence of contaminants in the site as a consequence of the falsity or deficiency of the final confirmatory samples and their respective analysis «

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