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In October the organization Ecoceanos was on a quick visit to Norway. Chileans told the tale about terrible environment and working conditions at the Norwegian owned fish-farming facilities in their home country.
A consortium led by Veidekke ASA and consisting of Norwegian, Swedish, and Swiss companies, reported on November 20, 2000, that they had been granted the contract to build the Bujagali power plant on the Nile for America's AES. The power plant faces huge local resistance, and international hydropower experts question several aspects of the project, including the situation of the hundreds of people forced to move.
I June this year NorWatch published the report "Health at Risk" - on the lack of safety at the three Hydro Agri Trinidad ammonia plants. Hydro Agri now says the number of accidents has clearly decreased. The accident victims focused upon in the report get millions in compensations. Furthermore, the company has followed NorWatch's recommendations and initiated a dialogue with the local communities.
The Norwegian Veritas (DNV) published its report from a field trip to the scrapping yards in Chittagong, Bangladesh this summer. DNV has uncovered severe water and soil pollution, as well as hazardous working conditions. Two explosions at scrapping yards in Chittagong in May and June killed a total of 40 workers, due to explosive gases in the tankers. In the EU, there are calls for decommissioning of all single-hulled ships by 2008-2010, after last year's Erika disaster.
Once again there are reports on violent clashes over Norsk Hydro's controversial mining project in India, this time between villagers with conflicting interests, contract workers and the police. The Indian NGO Agragamee says that it still suffers from the authorities' sanctions after it involved itself in the case. And the villagers recently chased contract workers out of the valley where the company wants to establish an alumina factory.
The number of injuries at the company's ammonia plant is high, specially for the employees of the contractors who work at the plants. Severely injured workers, and desperate widows of workers who died in an accident almost three years ago, have taken Hydro Agri Trinidad to court, demanding financial compensation. NorWatch visited the plant last winter, and the results are presented in the report "Health at Risk".
Hydro Agri Trinidad has many environmental challenges. An environmental impact assessment of the plant has never been made, even though large quantities of nitrogen oxides, and an amount of CO2 equalling two of the controversial proposed gas power plants in Norway, are emitted from the plants. In addition, an independent environmental consultant in Trinidad accuses the company of exceeding the temperature limits of the cooling water that is released from the production.
Hydro Aluminium wants to build a new gas power plant and an aluminium plant, and suggested that the project should be located south of the industrial area Point Lisa's on Trinidad's west coast. In the village Pranz Gardens, which is situated in the middle of the suggested factory area, the project has caused fear and insecurity. The building of houses has stopped, and potential newcomers consider moving somewhere else. Officially, the decision to start the project has not been made. If it is built, it may have extensive negative consequences for the local environment.
Despite strong growth in China's economy, several large power projects in the country are having trouble finding buyers for the power produced. Now, the stock exchange listing of the company behind the Three Gorges project has been postponed due to doubts about profitability. Those who have lined their own pockets with money from the development are now being served with harsh sentences.
The watch giant Timex, owned by the Fred. Olsen family, produces its wrist watches under blameworthy conditions in the Philippines. Trade union is an unknown word, and the workers are sacked arbitrarily. Thousands of young women work at the assembly lines. They work up to 16 hours a day, with only a half an hour lunch break and a fifteen minutes coffee-break. The workers are not permitted to bring their own food; if they for example bring candy to alleviate their hunger, they are punished with suspension without pay. These are some of the findings of the NorWatch report "The Olsen family in the Philippines - exploitation of young women in the Timex watch factory".
After years of bitter conflict with the project affected people in the State of Orissa, Utkal Alumina has now changed its strategy.  A new, humanitarian foundation shall improve upon the company's local reputation, through support of agricultural development and establishment of modern medical offices.  Ravi Pragada, of the Mines, Minerals & People network, is, however, very sceptical about the new foundation which is controlled by Utkal Alumina.
Again, Norsk Hydro's controversial mining project in Orissa, India, has been postponed.  Originally, the investment decisions should have been made during the summer of 1996.  Repeatedly, dates for both the investment decision and the construction start have been postponed.  The project has met sizable local resistance and the owners have been in-fighting.  Now the plans are again postponed.  The time for the investment decision is now postponed until the year 2001.