Tribal chief and Siemens CEO to discuss hydro dams

An Amazonian chief has met with Siemens’ bosses to convince them to scrap plans for hydroelectric dams. General Chief Arnaldo Kaba Munduruku and Senior Advisor Ademir Kaba Munduruku traveled from […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

An Amazonian chief has met with Siemens’ bosses to convince them to scrap plans for hydroelectric dams.

General Chief Arnaldo Kaba Munduruku and Senior Advisor Ademir Kaba Munduruku traveled from the Tapajos Valley in the Amazon rainforest to Surrey for the discussion.

They showed photographs of damage they claim was caused by previous Siemens-supplied dams and invited the company’s executives to visit their homeland and see the damage for themselves.

They are now to meet Siemens UK CEO Juergen Maier to discuss the issue further.

Munduruku lands are threatened by plans to build five dams across the Tapajos River, the last major undammed tributary of the Amazon. Last week, the Brazilian Environment Agency (IBAMA) ruled that the first dam should not be built due to the unacceptable environmental damage it would cause, though the other four dams are still planned.

Sara Ayech, Forests Campaigner for Greenpeace UK, said: “Siemens needs to make a decision about whether they want to remain part of the problem or become part of the solution.

“They are a leader in renewable energy and have the expertise and muscle to help Brazil boost its energy security without trashing the Amazon rainforest. They should be ready for a clear commitment at the next meeting.”

ELN has contacted Siemens for a response. Celebrities have backed the tribe’s stance.