Randau Marques

Icaçaba/SP, 1949
Interview granted in 2005

Randau de Azevedo Marques was a journalist, born in Icaçaba/SP on August 29, 1949. In the early 1980s, Randau investigated and denounced what he called the “Valley of Death”, that is, the result of the environmental disaster caused by the Cubatão industrial complex. Pollution in the region generated acid rain and the birth of hundreds of children with anencephaly.


I really got into the environmental issue because it was a way to circumvent censorship. I’ve always done scientific journalism. And I adopted as a source, you know, a two-story house, there was an NGO there called SBPC, Brazilian Society for the Progress of Science. It was thanks to this transdisciplinarity that I was able to, uh, not be arrested anymore, when I filed a report denouncing that this hydroclimatic station was not a hydroclimatic station. Hey, we’re talking about Cubatão.

And I presented it in a series of reports calling it “Death Valley”, with documentary evidence of what was happening in Cubatão. To prevent other “cubatões” from continuing to flourish, and devastations continuing to ravage the country, and the air pollution continuing to cause outbreaks of anencephaly, as was proven in Cubatão, right? Headless infants who were born as a result of their mothers’ exposure to the surrounding environmental pollutants. Against all scientific evidence, bluffing is just impossible. This account, republished in its entirety by the New York Times and several other newspapers, had an international impact.

OIKOS was created as a pioneering organization, to the extent that, in the midst of the dictatorship, it filed a public civil action against the Cubatão Industrial Pole, forcing the industrialists, businessmen, to stop poisoning the population, the environment and everything else.

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