Mining giant Glencore faces human rights complaint over toxic spill in Chad

Flag of Chad

Another giant is facing human rights complain over toxic spill in Chad… Usually these giant corporations are free to pollute in Africa, and never or rarely face any setbacks… I wonder what this is all about… is there a competitor to Glencore that wants Glencore out of Chad to come polluting as well? I know I am a cynic… but you will have to admit that these giant corporations have polluted freely in every corner of the world, and in Africa in particular, without even getting a tap on the hand. I applaud this and hope that the people of Chad will get compensated… as no pollution should go unpunished. Excerpts below are from an article in the Guardian.


The wastewater basin at Glencore UK’s operations in Badila, southern Chad, collapsed in September 2018, unleashing 85m litres of runoff. Photograph: Raid (Source: The Guardian)

The UK government has accepted a human rights complaint against mining and commodities giant Glencore regarding a toxic wastewater spill in Chad, where dozens of villagers – among them children – claim they suffered severe burns, skin lesions and sickness after contact with contaminated water.

The complaint, brought by three human rights groups on behalf of affected communities, alleges environmental abuses and social engagement failures by the FTSE-100 company in relation to two spillages, the wastewater spill and an alleged oil spill, both in 2018.

… In September 2018, a wastewater basin holding a crude oil by-product collapsed at Glencore UK’s operations in Badila, southern Chad. Some 85 m litres of runoff – equivalent in volume to 34 Olympic-sized swimming pools – flooded fields and the local river, which local people use for drinking, bathing and washing.

At least 50 people reported burns, skin lesions, sickness and diarrhoea after bathing in or using the contaminated river water in the weeks after the leak. Many of those harmed were children, some of whom were admitted to hospital. One 13-year-old boy was unable to move his body for a year after swimming in the river, which doctors attributed to the “crude oil burns”. Livestock drinking from the river also died, according to the complaint.

7 thoughts on “Mining giant Glencore faces human rights complaint over toxic spill in Chad

  1. This is so disgusting. I wasn’t aware of that happening in Chad. How is it that people are more likely to be punished by throwing some tiny pieces of litter on the ground (not that anyone should litter, obviously), than companies dumping oil and other contaminants across the country? This logic could also apply to the Flint water crisis, and that was in America! The Chadian government should kick out that and other companies doing all this polluting.


      1. Exactly. The governor of Michigan at the time of the Flint Water Crisis Rick Snyder didn’t get charged until last January as well as other people involved. That took way too long and I think the charges are soft given how many lives were ruined. If some random person were to put lead in a major water source, there would be biological terrorism charges and multiple cases of murder or at the very least attempted murder if no one dies.


      2. Yes… the punishment for the little people is so big, yet the big ones embezzle, and commit atrocities and nothing is done to them… it is as if the higher one is, the less law applies to them?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Very good analysis of this situation. If you pardon the Yu-Gu-Oh Abridged reference, these issues sadly give light to the quote “Screw the rules, I have money!” as the bigwigs get to flee with golden parachutes while having an army of lawyers.


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