Mobilization stops illegal mining in preserved territory in the Amazon

On November 17, in a joint operation carried out in the municipality of Itamarati (AM), the inspection bodies IBAMA and the Federal Police, with the support of ICMBio and the Military Police, interrupted the activities of illegal prospecting rafts on the Juruá River.

Since the end of October, two ferries were illegally present at the site. One of them, which was dredging in the region, was destroyed by the responsible bodies. The second was seen leaving the river before the institutions arrived. It is noteworthy that, in cases of environmental crime, the seizure and destruction of instruments by the responsible inspection bodies is provided for by law, by Federal Decree No. 6,514/2008.

The mobilization of public and private institutions that operate in the region was essential to put pressure on inspection. On October 25, we signed, together with the Forum of the Middle Juruá Territory (TMJ Forum) and other organizations operating in the territory, a complaint filed with the Federal Public Ministry. Look on here.

The Forum also articulated a local mobilization against mining and disseminated the news in press vehicles in search of greater speed in the action. The secret operation relied on cooperation between the agencies and took place peacefully and without obstruction of the river's main channel.

Illegal prospector dredger is destroyed by inspection bodies on the Juruá river, municipality of Itamarati (AM) Photo: Portal 18 hours

During the operation, several engines, radio communication system, satellite internet network, about thirty thousand liters of fuel, tools used for gold extraction and many food items were found in the dredger. Evidence suggests that they planned to carry out the illegal activities for a long period of time.

                                   Photo: North Portal
                                  Photo: North Portal

In a community close to the site, a small community raft that was also dredging the river was destroyed. The enticement of rural communities by prospectors is an isolated reality, but it saddens the region's social movement, which has a history of fighting labor exploitation and develops collaborative forest conservation activities that generate income for the population.

THE TMJ forum brings together local organizations and other partners that work in the territory, with the aim of integrating and strengthening mutual cooperation in favor of the quality of life of these peoples and traditional communities, value chains and the conservation of biodiversity in the region.

With the support of environmental inspection bodies, the social and collective struggle to keep the forest standing continues. We will not make room for the arrival of mining on the Juruá River, one of the most preserved areas in the Amazon, with rich biodiversity and toxin-free waters.

About the Juruá Middle Territory Program (PTMJ) 

The PTMJ was born in 2017 with the aim of contributing to the sustainable development of the territory, offering sustainable livelihoods, well-being to traditional populations and conserving biodiversity.

Sitawi is responsible for articulating the project, coordinating activities and reports, evaluating results and supporting local organizations. We seek, therefore, to ensure the improvement in the management of extractive-based enterprises, the quality of life of the population and the conservation of biodiversity in the Amazon. Learn more about other mechanisms we have developed at Conservation and Climate Finance.