In 2017 Glencore buys a majority stake in the Cerro de Pasco mine, an open-pit mine in the middle of a major Peruvian city, and resumes mining operations.1 After operations begin again – they had been paused for 11 months – the heavy metal poisoning of local children and residents worsens considerably.
78% of children surveyed experienced symptoms of heavy metal poisoning, including chronic gastrointestinal diseases, reduced vision, depression and other behaviour disorders. There are high levels of lung cancer, stomach cancer, depression, and suicide amongst the adult population. The heavy metal poisoning was found by the Center for Climate Crime Analysis to be directly caused by the mining activities.2 Glencore sold the mine in 2019.3
Further Reading: Cerro de Pasco: The city built around a mine
1 “Glencore to acquire voting shares of Volcan Compañia Minera S.A.A.,” Glencore.com, October 3, 2017,
2 Center for Climate Crime Analysis, Report to the Council on Ethics of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global on the situation in Cerro de Pasco, 28 June 2019, full report available from https://www.essex.ac.uk/news/2019/08/08/peruvian-mine-owners-responsible-for-dangerous-pollution-essex-human-rights-students-find
3 “Cerro de Pasco acquires Volcan’s mining assets in Peru for $30 million,” Mining.com, November 28, 2019,