Zambia: Villagers sue mining company for water pollution

| June 13, 2016

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Villagers in Zambia’s Copperbelt Province are taking Vedanta to court, claiming that a subsidiary of the giant British mining company polluted their water supplies, affecting the villagers’ health and farms.

Eighteen hundred people from the villages of Shimulala, Hippo Pool, Hellen, and Kakosa were allegedly affected by the open-pit mine. The villagers’ primary sources for drinking, washing, bathing, and irrigation are surface water and shallow wells near the Nchanga open-pit copper mine. They are seeking compensation for losses and damages to their health and land.

The mining company is arguing that the case should be heard in a Zambian court, but a British judge recently ruled that a British court could hear the villagers’ claim.

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Photo credit: Alamy/ The Guardian