There are several options available to the companies:
Option 1: BHP should give full restitution to the affected parties and should fire its 2 executives and call for the other executives to be fired as well.
Option 2: BHP should divest itself of its interest in the joint venture mine, Samarco
Option 3: BHP should begin a marketing campaign to diminish the negative media attention from this and offer to pay the Brazilian government $2 Billion dollars
Option 4: Any combination above OR other alternative
Option Selected? (after using the Ethical Framework SEE ATTACHED BHP BILLITON.DOCX FOR INSTRUCTIONS)
Ethical Framework for resolving ethical dilemmas?
obtain the relevant facts, identify the ethical issue, determine the affected individual(s), identify possible alternatives, determine effect of alternatives on groups, decide on action …
Most compelling reason(s) for your choice?
Greatest risk(s) associated with this choice?
Assumptions? (these should be reasonable assumptions that do not contradict what is in the case)
The best cause of action is option 4. Taking responsibility for the catastrophes caused by negligence on the part of the company is the most appropriate measures in all possible scenarios. The contamination of the water bodies and the environment clearly points towards the waste that came from the mining company. Therefore, providing compensation to the affected parties would be the justest and acceptable way to deal with the fiasco (Glover, 2004, p. 35). Furthermore, a proper inquiry should be carried out to identify who was responsible for the contamination incident and the said persons should be held accountable. This, in turn, would mean that the executives in charge of the mine and waste management should be responsible and resign from their jobs at the very least and possibly face criminal liability. The company should also take steps to change the public image on it by running a campaign to help take off the attention from the saga. A combination of the two options would assist the company to regain its foothold and support within the country (Evans, 2004, p. 90).
The executives who were involved and their jobs would, therefore, be at risk would oppose the action. However, their opinion in such a matter is not vital as they failed to do their jobs properly thus should not be allowed to keep the said jobs. The public would also support the move to fire the executives and provide restitution to the public. It may not bring back the people who lost their lives, but it would be a good start to getting the survivors back on track.
The decision is based on the assumption that there was no foul play from external elements and that the contamination of the dams was squarely due to the negligence of the management and workforce. Furthermore, it is assumed that the lack of action at the beginning of the tragedy and the denial was part of a cover-up by the executives.
Evans, A., 2004. Incorporating Ethics. Law Institute Journal, 78(12), p. 90.
Glover, J., 2004. Equity, Restitution, and Fraud. Butterworths: Lexis Nexis.