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Thursday, August 02, 2007

Letter to Rio Tinto

To: Tom Albanese, Chief Executive, Rio Tinto plc
Date: 2nd of August 2007
RE: Rio Tinto’s Obligations regarding Alcan’s Coega Smelter

Dear Mr. Albanese,

Congratulations on your offer for Alcan. South African civil society has noted that Rio Tinto is committed to the Alcan smelter at Coega (Business Day, 13 July 2007). As I’m sure you are aware, there has been significant opposition to this smelter on a local and national scale. A great many problems have been caused by Alcan’s complete refusal to disclose the details of its energy deal with Eskom.

Given change of ownership, there is a narrow window of opportunity for clarity and informed public debate regarding this smelter and supply of electricity to. We do hope that Rio Tinto will fully disclose the details of agreements signed between Eskom and Alcan in the interests of working within an open, democratic society.

Please do see attached application for information, including questions and details required.

One last point, will Rio Tinto, in order to address the concerns of citizens living in Port Elizabeth, commence a new Environmental Impact Assessment for the proposed smelter at Coega?

Yours truly,

Tristen Taylor
Energy Policy Officer
Earthlife Africa-Johannesburg Branch



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