Peru: Trade Deal Injustice for the Children of La Oroya

Friends of the Earth

Written by Bill Waren

Pay the Polluter $800 Million?

“There is a silent epidemic here. The effects on the children are not easily visible, but they have all kinds of serious health problems, and those will only get worse if the smelter reopens,” says Hugo Villa, a local doctor.

According to the Blacksmith Institute, a non-profit pollution think tank, the children of La Oroya, Peru live in one of ten most polluted places on earth. In this town of 33,000 high in the central Andes, a metallic smelter has contaminated the air, land, and water for decades.

The La Oroya smelter is owned by Doe Run Peru, which through a complex network of subsidiaries is controlled by the Renco Group. Renco is the holding company of Ira Rennert, one of the wealthiest men in the United States. Continue reading Peru: Trade Deal Injustice for the Children of La Oroya