Rio Tinto invites experts to have a dialogue and accuses media of lying

The Rio Tinto Company invited experts from various fields and opponents of the Jadar lithium mining project to have a dialogue about the project with the company that would be based on facts to avoid further misleading the public.

Rio Tinto states that the claims that Serbia and its citizens would not benefit economically from the project are not true, but that it would be the largest greenfield investment in the modern history of Serbia, worth about 2.5 billion dollars according to 2021 estimates.

According to a study conducted by Ergo Consultancy, the Jadar project would generate revenue for both state and local budgets in the amount of 180 million euros when the project reaches full operational capacity.

According to Rio Tinto, the project would create 1,300 permanent new jobs and up to 3,500 temporary jobs.

Rio Tinto also rejected allegations that it bribed Serbian government officials, stressing that it has no influence on government regulations.

As for the environmental impact of Jadar, Rio Tinto adds that the claim that spilling tailings from the Jadar project would endanger the environment is incorrect, as “no liquid tailings site is planned.” Mining waste and ore processing residues from the proposed project are dry and solid, Rio Tinto explains and adds:” “The claim that the use of sulfuric acid would emit sulfur fumes and damage the soil is incorrect. In the Jadar project, sulfuric acid will be used at a temperature of 90 degrees, thanks to which there will be no evaporation of sulfur dioxide,” says Rio Tinto.

The company claims it will not be possible for sulfuric acid to damage the soil because the entire process would occur in closed systems.

The company also accused Serbian media, in particular N1, of perpetuating a “campaign based on lies and misinformation”, adding that N1 was being uncritical and not including experts in various fields. According to Rio Tinto, the claims by the opponents of Jadar – the Popular Movement, Green-Left Front and Democratic Party – that mining lithium would benefit only foreign companies and leave the population of Serbia a wasteland and that the company won’t abide by environmental standards are untrue.

The Government of Serbia passed the Decree on the Termination of the Decree on the Spatial Plan of Special Purpose Areas for the Implementation of the Jadar Project which put entire project in jeopardy.

(Danas, 01.02.2024)

https://www.danas.rs/vesti/ekonomija/rio-tinto-poziva-na-dijalog-nikog-nismo-podmitili-projekat-bi-bio-najveca-grinfild-investicija-u-srbiji/

This post is also available in: Italiano

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