Being part of an area involves developing a relationship with the local communities and any other relevant institutions so as to be able to hear the legitimate concerns of all parties, get involved in local issues and work together to find solutions.
We are pursuing a new way of addressing both long-standing and newly-identified conflicts with communities using the framework of our principles of engagement - dialogue, collaboration, traceability, excellence and transparency.
When Los Pelambres began building the Mauro tailings dam, some 13 km from Caimanes, it faced opposition from local residents. This conflict continued for over a decade and involved lawsuits, roadblocks and other demonstrations. In May 2016, after nine months of talks, a historic agreement was approved by 84% of residents of the Caimanes communities and the rest of the Pupío valley.
The process to draw up and legitimise the agreement took place over 13 open meetings and a citizen consultation. All the meetings were recorded and published in full on the Chile Transparente and Los Pelambres websites. The citizen consultation was carried out before a notary public and with external observers.
The Caimanes Agreement was unprecedented and reflected the consensus reached on complying with the Supreme Court ruling on water from the Pupío stream, as well as on the other community claims regarding the safety of the dam and the development of the valley.
The Caimanes Agreement sets out measures aimed at:
- Ensuring a reliable water supply, in terms of quality and quantity, for human consumption and other activities.
- Increasing the reassurance to the community regarding the safety of the Mauro tailings dam.
- Producing programmes that help develop communities and families living in the Pupío valley.
PROGRESS FROM THE AGREEMENT
A committee was established to implement the Agreement, with representatives from the community, Los Pelambres and Chile Transparente. The main progress during 2016 was:
- Designing the final plan for the agreement and commencement of works.
- Processing the relevant permits in order to execute the works for ensuring water quantity and quality.
- Drawing up a Contingency Plan for Caimanes with the community and the authorities, which supplements the emergency procedure for the tailings dam. In the last quarter of 2016, the first works began on the identification and preparation of a new safety zone and an alarm system.
- In February 2017 meetings were held with the communities of Caimanes, Pupío and Rincón in order to jointly devise a common vision for the development of the region and plan the initiatives that will help realise this vision. Similarly, the Family Development Fund has now been fully implemented in all three locations.