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“The Belo Monster steals your children’s land/ Devours the woods and dries the rivers.” The samba-plot of the Rio samba school Imperatriz Leopoldinense for this year’s Carnival could be soundtrack to a disaster film. But not a film, a series, because the second episode could start any time.
The Belo monster (Beautiful monster) which the lyrics refers to is the hydroelectric dam of Belo Monte. But another ugly monster, which only brings beauty in its name, threatens the Xingu River: Belo Sun, a Canadian mining company that intends to extract 108 tons of gold from the Volta Grande region over 17 years. And “Beautiful monster II” may turn out in the end to be a remake of another monstrosity: the Mariana tragedy.
Earlier this month, the Pará Environment and Sustainability Secretariat authorized the construction of the project. Funai announced that it would appeal the decision and the National Human Rights Council requested the suspension of the project. But these initiatives will certainly not stand up to the greed.
If we want to prevent another tragedy from being announced, we need to stick together and arm ourselves – information is one of the best weapons against monsters like Belo Monte, Mariana and Belo Sun.
The Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens (MAB) (Movement for those affected by dams) has drawn up a list of 12 reasons why Belo Sun should never leave the paper.