Rock band Pearl Jam donated proceeds from the concert to the victims of a toxic mining spill in Brazil during a performance in the country, reported Agence France-Presse Saturday. The spill killed 12 people and was a major environmental disaster.
The Seattle band played a show Friday in Belo Horizonte, the capital of southeast state Minas Gerais, just weeks after the Nov. 5 disaster. The group's lead singer, Eddie Vedder, halted the show and called for the mining company involved in the disaster to be punished severely.
The website G1 posted a video in which Vedder then announced, in Portuguese, that the money made from the concert would go to the victims. The crowd reacted with a standing ovation.
The disaster struck when a dam collapsed at the waste reservoirs of an iron ore mine. A flood of muck laid wasted to a village, essentially burying it. At least 12 people died and 12 more remain missing. The dam collapse also led to the contamination of the region's Doce River, leaving 280,000 people without water while killing thousands of fish, turtles and other animals.
The country's Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira said Friday it was the worst environmental disaster in Brazilian history. Teixeira added it would likely take 30 years to clean the basin of the Doce River, the main river in the region.
The facility is owned by Samarco, a joint venture between major mining companies BHP Billiton of Australia and Vale of Brazil. More than $400 million in damages fines and frozen funds has been levied against Samarco.
— Pearl Jam (@PearlJam) November 21, 2015
Samarco is facing its first civil lawsuit as well. Lawyer Pedro Eduardo Pinheiro Silva filed the case Monday and demanded the joint venture pay 10 billion reais ($2.69 billion) in compensation for environmental damages, reported the Sydney Morning Herald. Both BHP and Vale has said they are assisting in rescue efforts and providing aid to victims.
In addition to addressing the dam disaster, Pearl Jam covered a song by Eagles of Death Metal during the show, according to Rolling Stone. Eagles of Death Metal were onstage at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris during last week's terror attacks that left 130 dead, 89 of whom were killed at the band's show.