Macri and Beaty against the law in Chubut, ArgentinaPublished by MAC on 2016-09-15
Source: UACCh Statement, Bloomberg
Vancouver-based miner defies fifteen years standing ban on open pit metal mining in Patagonia region
While assemblies in Chubut province claim for the approval of a new bill to ban mining, introduced through the Popular Initiative mechanism with the support of more than 13,000 signatures, President Mauricio Macri and Chairman of Canadian miner Pan American Silver, Ross Beaty, conspire in Buenos Aires to brake the law.
More information available on the website: They owe us a law (Nos deben una ley)- Campaign for the discussion and approval of the bill to ban mining in Chubut. [http://www.leymineriachubut.
See also on MAC:
2016-05-26 Update on anti-mining laws in Argentina
2016-02-24 Is mining up for change in Argentina?
For Water and Life: We reject government announcements and call for the approval of the People's Initiative to ban megamining in Chubut province, Argentina
Union of Citizen Assemblies of Chubut - UACCh
14 September, 2016
The assemblies of the province, gathered together in the Union of Citizen Assemblies of Chubut (UACCh), repudiate the permanent assaults of governments and mining companies announcing the imminent exploitation of mineral deposits on our territory.
For almost fifteen years, the people of Chubut have maintained a total rejection of large-scale mining activities and demanded that the official promises about "priority being given to the protection of water supplies" are translated into binding legislation. This would take place with the approval of the proposed Popular Initiative to Ban Metal Mining (including radioactive materials) in all stages and forms of exploitation.
Yesterday, in Buenos Aires, President Mauricio Macri enthusiastically welcomed the Chairman of Canadian miner Pan American Silver, Ross Beaty, who joyfully announced an investment of US$1,000 million for the development of the Navidad silver-lead megaproject in the Chubut central plateau.
Regarding this company, its Chairman, the mineral deposits and the Navidad project, we say:
- It is a lie that the project is "ready". After more than 10 years of exploration on the site, an independent study of the groundwater reservoirs was never carried out.
- Since they speak about processing 18,000 tons of rock daily, it is a lie that the intended exploitation will not be “megamining”.
- It is a lie that the funding for the mining project "is ready". Other damaging mega-projects like Pascua Lama and Potasio Rio Colorado claimed to be "ready" as well.
- The provisions of ILO Convention 169 regarding free, prior and informed consent for the indigenous communities, were not met with regard to the ancestral inhabitants of the Chubut plateau territory, so the presence of Pan American Silver in that territory is clearly illegal.
- This project is not sustainable: it will consume more energy and generate more waste than all the urban centers of the province combined.
- Opening the door to mining in Chubut will not only involve the Navidad project, but will also open up the development of the much more dangerous uranium mining industry.
- The international price of silver is more volatile than ever and lead is a poison of little economic value, the use of which is being reduced worldwide.
- Using the underground water to ensure our food sovereignty, and that of future generations, is a better option than using it for washing minerals.
- Ross Beaty has misled the public on other international projects. To mention one example, his company Magma Energy and its “investments” were emphatically rejected in Iceland some years ago.
At the same time, the Legislature of Chubut is ignoring the people, democracy and the Constitution of the Province, because they never even considered the proposed bill, backed by more than 13,000 signatures submitted by the assemblies through the constitutional mechanism of Popular Initiative.
At an unfortunate session on 25 November 2014, a law was passed that allowed large scale mining, without even reading the proposal originally submitted. This happened on the legal deadline for doing so, and with proven meddling by mining companies representatives, despite the huge organizational effort carried out by environmental assemblies.
Based on their own painful experiences, and those of other parts of the country and the world, the local people know that mining ruins water sources and destroys regional economies. In response, indigenous peoples have been courageously defending their territories against the claims of foreign and local companies to exploit the natural wealth of Chubut.
We demand an economic model in favor of life, that truly benefits the people by putting an end to plundering and pollution.
We call on the residents of Chubut to intensify all dissemination of information and social mobilization efforts.
Approve the Popular Initiative to ban megamining in Chubut!
The plateau is no sacrifice zone! They shall not pass!
More information about the Popular Initiative to ban megamining in Chubut: http://www.leymineriachubut.com.ar/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/iniciativapopularchubut/
Esquel Assembly: http://www.noalamina.org/
Pablo +54 2804630754
Nelly +54 2804341797
Silver Producer Seeks Macri Magic to End Argentine Mining Ban
September 13, 2016
Pan American Silver Corp. has everything in place to start mining one of the world’s largest silver deposits. There’s only one problem: an Argentine province’s blanket ban on open pits.
Chairman Ross Beaty is hoping the country’s new President Mauricio Macri will help him convince authorities in Chubut province to lift the ban so his company can spend more than $1 billion on a mine that would start producing about 12 million ounces.
Macri -- who has repealed capital and currency controls and mineral export taxes since taking office in December to lure back investment -- pledged his support for the Navidad project at a meeting in Buenos Aires Tuesday, Beaty said. The new federal government is trying to convince provinces to follow suit by introducing more investor-friendly regulation.
The Vancouver-based miner is seeing “hopeful signs” that the ban will be lifted for a mid-sized mine that will generate thousands of jobs in a scarcely populated area of southern Argentina, Beaty said in an interview after meeting with Macri.
The company already has financing in place for Navidad’s $600 million first phase. Development would take 18 months to two years.
In neighboring Santa Cruz province, Pan American Silver was going to close an operating silver mine because of the controls introduced by Macri’s predecessors. The project got a reprieve with the change of federal government, Beaty said.
Now he’s is looking to boost production in the country with Navidad in a bid to tap a long-term silver bull run that he says will withstand monetary policy “noise.” The white metal is up 36 percent his year as low interest rates boost the appeal of investments that don’t pay dividends or coupons.
Pan American Silver Provides Update on the Navidad Project
VANCOUVER, Sept. 13, 2016 /CNW/ - Pan American Silver Corp. confirmed that its Chairman, Mr. Ross Beaty, met today with the President of Argentina, Mr. Mauricio Macri, during the Argentina Business and Investment Forum in Buenos Aires.
During their meeting, Mr. Macri and Mr. Beaty discussed the prospects of the mining industry in Argentina, including the Company's Navidad project, located in the province of Chubut, which is one of the largest undeveloped silver deposits in the world.
Pan American is very encouraged with the policies that have been introduced by Mr. Macri's administration to make Argentina an attractive place for local and foreign investments.
Under a favorable investment and legal framework in Argentina, Pan American remains committed to the safe and environmentally responsible development of this world class silver deposit.
Current laws in Chubut, however, prohibit open pit mine development. As such, Pan American has made no investment or construction decision on the Navidad project.
Before any investment decision would be considered by the Company, existing provincial laws would have to be reformed and Pan American would have to obtain all required permits, as well as update the technical and economic analysis of the project.