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Vale presents a new concept for the Apolo Project, now without dam

Current proposal incorporates solutions for a more sustainable operation for the environment and safer for workers and communities. The Project does not interfere within the limits of Serra do Gandarela National Park

In September of this year, Vale filed a new Environmental Impact Study and Report (EIA/RIMA) with the State Secretariat for the Environment and Sustainable Development of Minas Gerais - SEMAD to resume licensing the Apolo Project with a new concept. The project, which started its licensing in 2009, underwent several revisions to meet changes in legislation and requests from civil society. The new proposal is the result of research and developments in engineering practices for safer and more sustainable mining.

The new Apolo Project is located between the municipalities of Caeté and Santa Bárbara and consists of the implementation of a mine, plant and an 8 km rail branch to connect to the Vitória a Minas Railroad (EFVM). The enterprise foresees the production of around 14 million tons of Sinter Feed per year at natural humidity, that is, without the use of water in the processing of iron ore. This production process eliminates the need for dams.
The current version also brings significant reductions in the project area, water consumption and carbon emission. The new Apolo Project occupies an area 32% smaller than the initial proposal of 2009, going from 2,000 hectares to 1,368 hectares. The project area also does not interfere with the limits of the Serra do Gandarela National Park, created in 2014 with an area of 31,270 hectares, of which around 15,000 hectares are in the process of possible donation by Vale to ICMBio.

Water consumption reduced by around 95% due to dry processing of iron ore. Currently, the need for the input for the project is estimated at approximately 100 m³/h, against 1,900 m³/h estimated in 2009. To increase safety conditions and reduce the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, autonomous trucks will be used in the mining area to transport the ore.

The project is expected to generate around 2,600 temporary jobs at the peak of the works, prioritizing local labor. In the operational phase, there will be around 2,800 job vacancies, of which 740 are direct jobs (between Vale employees and outsourced employees) and 2,100 are indirect and induced. Also during the operation, it is estimated that around R$ 138 million will be handled annually, in addition to an addition of BRL 151 million in taxes (CFEM - Financial Compensation for the Exploration of Mineral Resources - and TRFM - Rate for Controlling, Monitoring and Supervision of Exploration and Mining Activities of Mineral Resources) per year.

Dialogue with the community

In July of this year, Vale began presenting the Apolo Project's new concept to communities neighboring the enterprise, civil entities and the municipal authorities of Caeté and Santa Bárbara. The company will maintain its relationship with these groups, in addition to other sectors of civil society, to clarify doubts and discuss solutions related to the project. Vale reinforces its performance is based on dialogue, transparency and active listening in the territories where it is present.


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