Southern Copper Corp. (SCC) will consider closing its
Ilo copper smelter and refinery in southern Peru if the
government imposes stricter emissions controls.
"If the (new regime)
of the environment ministry comes into force from January 2014,
the (jobs) of at least 1,500 workers will be at risk," SCC said
in a filing with the Peruvian stock exchange.
The potential closure
was announced to workers July 5 in an e-mail, according to
Peruvian newspaper El Comercio.
environmental ministry intends to set a limit of 20 micrograms
of sulfur dioxide (SO2) per cubic meter (µg/m3) vs. the
current limit of 80 µg/m3.
In comparison, Japan
has set a limit of 105 µg/m3, while countries such as the
United States, Chile, Brazil and Mexico have a limit of 200
"It is not possible
for industries to meet the new standard of 20 µg/m3," SCC
The company invested
$570 million in Ilo in 2007 to meet environmental
SCC, which is 81
percent owned by Grupo México SAB de CV, operates two
other mines in Peru: Toquepala and Cuajone.
SCC is producing an
environmental impact study for its 120,000-tonnes-per-year
Tía Maria copper project in the south of Peru.
SCCs Las Chancas project is at a feasibility study
A version of this
article was first published in AMM sister publication Metal