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29 September 2011 | | |

Not a Commodity

Interview with Sonia Maranho, leader of the movement of people affected by dams in Brazil

Download: MP3 (1.6 Mb)

Labor exploitation, land grabbing and energy commodification are global mechanisms used by the financial and economic capital. This is reflected in all the countries that face similar processes.

Brazilian activist, Sonia Maranho of the Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB) spoke with Real World Radio during the Mesoamerican Meeting of the Latin American Network Against Dams and For Rivers, their Communities and Water (Redlar), held from September 22 to 25 in Tres Equis de Turrialba, Costa Rica.

MAB has been struggling for twenty years in defense of rivers in Brazil. During the event they shared their experience with Central America.

The organizers of the event said the aim of the Mesoamerican meeting was to strengthen the exchange besides improving the mobilization and management capacity between organizations working on these issues.

Maranho emphasized the need to consolidate these spaces to exchange struggles in defense of communities and their territories at a time when the “enemy is globalized”.

“We need to question the actual beneficiary of electricity to the detriment of peoples’ wellbeing. Energy for what and for whom? Electricity is not for the workers nor for the people. We know that the development of the capitalist system requires a lot of energy. We need to ask ourselves where does that energy go, what energy model are they proposing, one based on the exploitation of workers, nature and communities?”, he wondered.

One of the main struggles in Brazil is to stop the construction of Belo Monte dam on Xingu river, next to the town of Altamira in Para state. MAB says nearly 70,000 people will be affected by the dam.

Besides the dam, two canals bigger than the Panama Canal will be built. “They aim to make a big water way in the Amazon while producing food and facilitating mining exploitation in these territories”, she warned.


(CC) 2011 Real World Radio


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