Clarification on the issue of arsenic
Kinross categorically rejects all allegations published on some websites and Facebook pages related to health problems allegedly caused by gold mining activity. Such claims are irresponsible and have no scientific basis.
Therefore, we clarify that:
– Studies completed in 2013 to assess the potential contamination of gold mining in Paracatu for over 20 years demonstrate that there is no evidence of arsenic contamination of the environment or population of Paracatu. These studies were conducted by CETEM in partnership with FIOCRUZ, Instituto Evandro Chagas, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas da USP, the Sustainable Development Center at UNB and the Graduate Environmental Geochemistry of UFF and, also, by UFMG – INCT Acqua, in partnership with University of Queensland- Australia.
– Studies by CETEM conclude: “Under current conditions, the population of Paracatu is not exposed to levels of Arsenic through the consumption of supply water that would represent risks to human health”. “The average levels of arsenic in urine sampled from the population in Paracatu and arsenic levels in hair and blood indicate low environmental exposure to arsenic within the Paracatu population”. Most importantly, “The epidemiological study indicated that the population does not show mortality rates due to types of cancers associated with exposure to arsenic above the rates observed in several Brazilian cities, regions and in the country as a whole. Nor are there cases of dermatopathies related to exposure to arsenic”. (Final Report – Assessment of Arsenic Environmental Contamination and Epidemiological Study of Environmental Exposure Associated with Human Population of Paracatu, December 2013). These results were also presented by the CETEM team, in an open court for the population of Paracatu, in December 2013.
– It is reported in international technical literature that contamination by arsenic in food (mainly rice) is the main source of exposure to arsenic in the world population (The Toxic Side of Rice, Nature Vol 514, October 2014). In addition, water which is naturally enriched with arsenic is the greatest threat to public health related to As, especially in endemic regions such as Bangladesh, India, Taiwan, Argentina and other areas where As is found naturally in rocks adjacent to aquifers. Other significant sources of contamination linked to arsenic include industrial processes (photos presented in the article) such as the manufacture of wood preservatives, herbicides and additives in animal feed and farms.
Finally, we stand by our long-term commitment to the development of Paracatu, concerning the health and safety of our employees and the local population.
Kinross Brazil Mineração S/A