The minister of the GSI (Office of Institutional Security), General Augusto Heleno, gave his consent to businessmen with areas embargoed by Ibama (Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources) make progress in prospecting for gold in the Amazon, including in a practically untouched region.
The acts of the general, who is the executive secretary of the National Defense Council, also responded to requests for a member of a cooperative of miners who operate suction dredgers in riverbeds in the Amazon and also a lawyer who is now the chief of staff of a senator from Mato Grosso.
It is up to the GSI minister, as representative of the National Defense Council, to sign the so-called acts of prior consent, necessary for the exploration of mining in the border strip, in a width of up to 205 kilometers.
The search for gold was allowed in the region of São Ga briel da Cachoeira, in the extreme northwest of the Amazon, known as Cabeça do Cachorro. One of the authorizations was given to the company SF Paim.
Ibama’s public system for consulting embargoed areas –a measure adopted in the event of environmental infringements– shows that SF Paim had an area banned by inspectors on 31 July 2021, with inclusion in the list of embargoes on 2 of September. The area is located in Tapauá (AM).
The report was unable to contact the phone number informed by SF Paim.
The GSI minister also authorized Mineração Santa Elina Indústria e Comércio to search for gold in the border strip, more specifically in the region of the city of Pontes e Lacerda (MT). The municipality is located in the Legal Amazon, according to data from the IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics).
In 27 of May 2021, Heleno allowed the company to search for gold in 4.205 hectares in the border region in Mato Grosso. A new act, on the last 2nd, authorized ore surveys in 7.649 hectares.
Ibama has already closed four areas of the mining company, according to the public consultation system. The embargoes occurred in 705, 2014, 2014 and 2020.
The areas are in Mato Grosso and Rondônia and the environmental infractions were the most diverse: carrying out research, mining or extraction of unlicensed or non-licensed mineral resources; destroy the forest in a preservation area, or with the felling of a protected species without authorization; and yet another infraction of flora.
The reporter called the company on Friday (3), and the attendant referred it to a director in another number. No one answered.
One gold miner who received authorization from Heleno to search for gold in the Amazon was Décio José Weis, a member of the board of directors of the Cooperativa dos Garimpeiros da Amazônia. He appears on the cooperative’s website, headquartered in Manaus, as secretary.
The cooperative seeks to “regularize mineral exploration in the Amazon” and “is restricted to mining on the riverbed , practiced by suction dredgers”, as stated on the entity’s website. The work takes place in Amazonas, Pará, Rondônia and Mato Grosso.
Weis obtained two authorizations to work with gold research in the region of Japurá (AM). A consent concerns an area of 4.705 hectares. Another, the area of 3.31 hectares. The acts of the GSI minister were signed in August and December 2021.
Tânia Oliveira Sena, vice president of the cooperative, said to the report that Weis is no longer part of the entity. She said she would look for a contact for the prospector, so that he could comment on the information, but there was no return.
On July 9th 2019, lawyer Irajá Rezende de Lacerda obtained authorization from the GSI to search for gold in 1.705 hectares in a border strip, more specifically in Comodoro (MT) .
Today, Lacerda is the chief of staff of Senator Carlos Fávaro (PSD-MT), who took office in April 2020 after Selma Arruda’s impeachment by the TSE (Superior Electoral Court).
“I’m a lawyer and work in the environmental and agrarian area. There was a rejection [posterior do requerimento de pesquisa], because I didn’t having continued the project. My performance [no Senado] has zero relationship [com o projeto de pesquisa de ouro]”, said Lacerda. specific cases of authorization for gold research.
In a note, the Ministry linked to the Presidency stated that there are acts of consent throughout the Amazon region ônica, aimed at researching or exploring “several minerals considered strategic for Brazil in recent decades”.