MAC: Mines and Communities

March In Esquel For No To The Mine And Against Uranium Mining In Cerro Solo

Published by MAC on 2006-09-15


March in Esquel for NO TO THE MINE and Against Uranium Mining in Cerro Solo


By the Assembly of Self-Organized Neighbors of Esquel

Esquel, Chubut, 5 September, 2006. Residents of the city marched yesterday afternoon, as they do on the fourth day of every month, against the mining projects and under the slogan "Out With All the Plundering and Contaminating Mining." Among the demonstrators, as is common, folks of all ages and types participated with banners against the mining laws and the provincial planning that the government of Das Neves wants to carry out.

The march wound through the center of the city, past the offices of mining company Meridian Gold as well as the doors of City Hall. On the sidewalk in front of the offices of the mining company, located across from the municipal offices of tourism, a resident read a document outlining a series of points showing the concerns of the residents of the region. Letters of support were read and other demonstrators spoke out in support of the people of Cholila who are struggling against the construction of a dam to provide cheaper electricity for the benefit of a foreign company, and, if constructed, will affect the fragile ecosystems of the Lake Lezana and the inhabitants of the region.

The neighbors also spoke out against the new National Nuclear Plan, saying that the fuel for the atomic plants will come from the uranium deposits in Cerro Solo in the province of Chubut, saying that "there are alternative sources of energy which do not put the peoples health into risk. We need project serious and sustainable development projects. The water is running out, every day more scarce. The only people who appear to not notice are our politicians."

They also blamed local provincial and municipal officials for the transport of dangerous toxic wastes without official control through local streets and national parks. This was shown clearly in the official report over a truck which in April was stopped by citizens in the city, which had come from the mining project Calcatreu in the province of Río Negro. The report confirmed that the truck was indeed carrying materials categorized by national law as toxic wastes.

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