Por Roberta Danelon Leonhardt e Carolina de Almeida Castelo Branco

After major environmental accidents in Brazil, entrepreneurs, lawyers, the judiciary, public prosecutors and governmental authorities are still facing the challenges of such crises against a backdrop of incomplete and imperfect laws, tools and recovery measures. Accidents of such  enormity can alter the natural course of the activities of any organisation, especially because the company operations are designed to run in a ‘normal’ mode.

The recent accidents involving mining, ports and the petroleum industry in Brazil have highlighted weaknesses in present regulation and a lack of preparation on the part of some companies. In addition to the absence of robust rules, the gaps in public oversight can lead to  a perfect storm for new environmental disasters. No effective oversight by public entities can prevent such accidents as they are caused by a shortage of technicians and poor technical training. There are not enough technicians for the number of projects underway in the country. For this reason, it is imperative that companies set up crisis management programmes.

International Bar Association 
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