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Department of Spatial Planning

Invited talk at the Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Víctor Cobs-Muñoz during his talk at the Bergbau-Museum Bochum. © Bergbau-Museum Bochum

On Saturday, 25 November, Víctor Cobs-Muñoz had the honor of delivering a compelling talk at the Deutsches Bergau-Museum Bochum (German Mining Museum of Bochum) to mark the 50th anniversary of the military coup in Chile. Titled Sacrifice Zones in Chile: Unveiling the Hidden Costs of Progress and Extraction – Reflecting on 50 Years Since the Military Coup, the presentation delved into the profound and lasting effects of the Chilean dictatorship's policies on the country's environmental justice.

The insightful discussion homed in on the concept of Sacrifice Zones—communities disproportionately impacted by intensive and persistent polluting economic activities. By examining concrete examples, the talk shed light on the visible and enduring environmental and social challenges stemming from political and economic decisions made during the dictatorship, which continue to reverberate to this day.  Víctor Cobs-Muñoz provided a nuanced exploration of the hidden costs of progress, offering a poignant reflection on the complex interplay between politics, economics, and the environment. The audience was engaged in a thoughtful examination of the sacrifices made by these communities and the broader implications for Chile's environmental landscape. The talk offered a sobering reminder of the need for continued vigilance in advocating for environmental justice and sustainable development.