ST. LOUIS (CN) – The Peruvian affiliate of St. Louis-based Doe Run Co. has been stripped of its environmental certification by an independent auditor. Doe Run operates a smelter in La Oroya, Peru, one of the most polluted places in the world. In October 2007, two nuns sued Doe Run on behalf of 137 children in La Oroya, whom the nuns said suffered lead poisoning, nervous system injuries, learning and behavioral disorders, anemia, fatigue, hypertension and spontaneous abortions as a result of the plant’s pollution.
The Doe Run plant processes copper, lead, zinc and other metals. The certification by Cologne, Germany-based TUV Rheinland, is not required for the company to operate in Peru, but it could hurt relations with customers, many of which require the certification. La Oroya is in the central Andes. The nuns sued it in St. Louis City Court.