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Antofagasta faces charges, fines for environmental breaches in Chile

Antofagasta faces charges, fines for environmental breaches in Chile
Mining News Pro - The agency said on Wednesday that audits carried out at the mine site between June 2019 and January 2020 confirmed a community complain. This claimed the operation’s use of water was a threat to the Loa frog.
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According to Mining News Pro - Chile’s Superintendency of the Environment (SMA) has files charges against Antofagasta’s (LON: ANTO) Centinela copper mine in the country’s north, citing environmental damage.

The agency said on Wednesday that audits carried out at the mine site between June 2019 and January 2020 confirmed a community complain. This claimed the operation’s use of water was a threat to the Loa frog.

This amphibian is considered a critically endangered species that only lives in that part of the planet, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), SMA said.

The Centinela mining complex, located in Chile’s Antofagasta region, was created in 2014 from the merger of the Esperanza and El Tesoro mines.

The company draws water from an aquifer to supply El Tesoro mine and from a desalination plant for Esperanza.

“Our audits revealed that the company has had an impact on the drop in water levels in the area, worsened by the fact that it did not report the impacts on the Loa frog,” nor took preventive actions about it,” the acting superintendent of the environment, Emanuel Ibarra, said in the statement.

The infractions go from “minor” to “very serious” and could see Antofagasta pay around $10 million in fines.

The miner now has 10 business days to present a compliance program addressing the deficiencies outlined and 15 business days to respond to the charges laid out by the SMA.


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