MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Latin America Update

Published by MAC on 2006-03-26


Latin America Update

26th March 2006

The shocking consequences of Monterrico Metals' attempts to disrupt a farmers' forum in northern Peru continue to reverberate, as a community leader starts a European speaking tour.

Also "playing for time" in Peru is Doe Run which promises to reduce its toxic emissions at La Oroya, while still not meeting minimum standards.

A Chilean regional environmental commission has rejected Gold Fields attempt to prospect in a national park; while Chilean company, Valle Central, is charged with contamination.

It's now been ten years since the initiation of the first large-scale mining project in Argentina - the gold and copper mine Bajo la Alumbrera in Catamarca., operated by UK-Swiss Xstrata. Recently, the Argentinian Auditor General accused provincial authorities of lacking the infrastructure necessary to guarantee the required oversight necessary for companies' compliance with environmental norms. Meanwhile the government announces a threefold increase in exploration spending.

A Mexican trade union has indicted the country's biggest company for homicide, following the deaths of 65 miners last month.

In Guyana, another subsidiary of Gold Fields, the world's seventh most important gold miner, is being backed by the World Bank's IFC.

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