Mining activity in the copper mine The Bambasoperated by MMG Limited, began to fall sharply after protesters blocked a key access road late last month.
According to the Reuters report, electricity demand data from the mine shows that activity has already started to plummet on February 2. A company source confirmed that this was due to the impact of the blockade on mine activity. Power demand at the mine has fallen 40% since then, according to data from COES, a body that represents companies in Peru’s national energy sector.
“The data does show lower consumption,” said Gonzalo Tamayo, former Mining Minister and partner at the consulting firm Macroconsult. “It is a preview of what could happen if the blockade continues.”
The Las Bambas source who asked not to be identified said the drop in electricity demand was due to a “progressive reduction in operations” since the blockade began on January 27. Las Bambas declined to comment.
The rapid drop in electricity demand underscores how sensitive a mine like Las Bambas is to roadblocks, which have increasingly become a tool of local communities seeking to pressure mining companies to pay or create jobs. local.
The mine has been a focus of protests since it began operations in 2016. MMG warned on Monday that it may have to stop operations before February 20 if the blockade is not lifted.
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