Report: F-150 Lightning linked to Amazon rainforest pollution

Products like Ford Motor Co.’s F-150 Lightning are destroying the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, according to a Bloomberg investigation.

The news agency reported Monday that the aluminum used in the car’s frame is linked to rust-colored bauxite from the mine “which has long faced allegations of pollution and ownership.” lands” and an ore refinery that is suspected of making people sick.

A class-action lawsuit has been filed by 11,000 residents of neighborhoods near the Hydro Alunorte refinery that has named Norway’s Norsk Hydro ASA as responsible for polluting rivers and streams, according to Bloomberg. The suit says there is toxic sludge high in aluminum and other heavy metals, and that Alunorte’s operations have caused health problems including cancer and birth defects.

Ford’s electric F-150, made at the Rouge plant in Dearborn. it uses aluminum to make light. Ford switched to aluminum from steel for the exterior of the F-150 combustion engine in 2015.

Most of the aluminum on the car, other than what Hydro supplies, can be traced to Amazon, Bloomberg found.

Researchers studying communities near the Alunorte oil refinery in Barcarena have found that rivers and streams are being polluted by toxic metals, the news agency said, with some levels 57 times higher than normal. it is considered that he is not healthy. Bloomberg also analyzed the results of medical tests done by some residents, where a woman was found to have doubled the amount of aluminum in her hair 175 times and 81 times in her blood.

In 2018, the Brazilian authorities fined Oslo Hydro 20 million reais ($6.1 million at the time) and had to temporarily stop production after releasing untreated water during a flood. It later agreed to pay an additional 160 million pounds. The company has denied any wrongdoing or wrongdoing in the matter, Bloomberg reported.

London-based law firm Pogust Goodhead has filed a lawsuit against Hydro in the Netherlands. The company wants to take responsibility for 10 incidents that cause water pollution. Hydro has denied the allegations and has until March 8 to file a response.

In a statement issued by Ford spokeswoman Artealia Gilliard, “Ford is committed to creating a chain that exceeds the minimum standards and respects human rights, including the right to clean air and clean water.”

“This commitment applies to everything we do and others do for us. We encourage people to take care of things, investigate them all, and work with suppliers to align their business practices with yours.” “Our rules.”

Mineração Rio do Norte bauxite mine, known as MRN, is located in the national forest along the Amazon basin. MRN mines more than 12 million metric tons of bauxite annually from the forest. Ships bring about half of MRN’s exports to Alunorte.

MRN, owned by a conglomerate of mining companies, wants to expand its footprint by about a third. Authorities have twice refused to waive environmental studies “for insufficient consultation with neighboring communities,” according to Bloomberg. The study was accepted in October, and a decision is expected this year.

The mine encroached on a part of the country meant for descendants of slaves who are entitled to legal protection, Bloomberg reported. The company said, “The chartering of protected land is done by government agencies,” the report said.

Communities near the MRN mine have complained of ill health, telling Bloomberg that many fish have disappeared and the water is not safe to drink or wash. Some communities receive government-provided water purification tablets, while others receive piped water through white plastic pipes that emerge from the ground.

Vladimir Senra Moreira, director of sustainability at the mining company, told Bloomberg that he respects the opinions of community members, but “the data we have from monitoring does not establish any link between claims of water pollution and mining operations are not.”

MRN has been fined more than $6.5 million for 29 violations by the state’s Environmental Protection Agency over the past two decades, but a spokesperson for the agency told Bloomberg MRN has paid less than 10% of that amount. MRN is appealing the fine.

According to shipping data reviewed by Bloomberg and anonymous sources, F-150 manufacturers Arconic Corp., Novelis Inc., and Constellium SE all use “aluminum purchased from Alcoa or Rio Tinto smelters in the Canadian province of Quebec that receive alumina from Alunorte,” news. the agency reported.

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