MAC/20: Mines and Communities

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Published by MAC on 2005-04-28


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Letters on Argentina, Chile and Australia to Barrick Gold at the 2005 AGM

Go away, Barrick!

[The photographs are of the following letter being delivered by activists Javier Rodriguez Pardo (Argentina) and Cesar Padilla (Chile) at the Barrick Latin America regional office (Santiago de Chile)]

Santiago, April 28, 2005

To Barrick Gold Corporation

Barrick protestsBarrick Gold's Annual General Meeting is taking place in Toronto, Canada, and the communities and organizations of Chile and Argentina published the following communication:

The communities of the Valley Huasco in Chile and of the province of San Juan in Argentina, and also those who have discovered the implications of the proposed mining project, oppose the exploitation of the Pascua-Lama and Veladero complex in the Andes mountain range, as envisaged by the Canadian company Barrick Gold.

The extractive mining method that will be applied over this fragile ecosystem (a perfect example of the watersheds with multiple glaciers that feed the communities and the crops of the towns below) is incompatible with the agricultural activity, the form of traditional life, the sustainable development and the future of the communities at both sides of the frontier.

This proposed project will use dangerous chemicals, especially cyanide and sulfuric acid, that generate toxic waste matter - including acids and heavy metals, including arsenic, and
will contaminate the land, the water, the air, and rivers.

We maintain that this mining does not contribute to local, regional and national development in a favorable way. It does not generate significant jobs and brings with it poverty, delinquency, diseases, drug addiction, alcoholism and prostitution.

The affected communities were not consulted in relation to the quality of life that this type of mining will impose.

The company is not in a position to take the necessary mitigating actions or reparations that they promise in the case of accidents, spills or any other type of contingency that can happen regularly in mining activities.

THEREFORE, WE WILL NOT PERMIT OUR COMMUNITIES TO BE LOOTED, THE DESTRUCTION OF OUR NATURE, CULTURE, HEALTH AND SOVEREIGNTY OF BOTH TOWNS.

WE DEMAND THE IMMEDIATE CESSATION OF THIS MINING ACTIVITY

WE DEMAND BARRICK TO GO AWAY !

Signing Organizations:

COORDINADORA DE DEFENSA DEL VALLE DEL HUASCO, CHILE
CONSEJO DE DEFENSA DEL VALLE DEL HUASCO, CHILE
PASTORAL SALVAGUADA DE LA CREACIÓN, ALTO DEL CARMEN, CHILE
ASOCIACIONES DE AGRICULTORES Y REGANTES DEL VALLE DEL HUASCO, CHILE
ASOCIACIÓN GREMIAL DE TURISMO DE VALLENAR, CHILE
COMITÉ DE APOYO A LA DEFENSA DEL VALLE DEL HUASCO, CHILE
OBSERVATORIO LATINOAMERICANO DE CONFLICTOS AMBIENTALES, CHILE
CODEFF, AMIGOS DE LA TIERRA-CHILE, JENIA COFRE
AUTOCONVOCADOS DE SAN JUAN, ARGENTINA, ARGENTINA
RED NACIONAL DE ACCIÓN ECOLOGISTA DE ARGENTINA, RENACE
FEDERACION DE VIÑATEROS Y PRODUCTORES AGROPECUARIOS DE SAN JUAN, ARGENTINA
ASAMBLEA DE AUTOCONVOCADOS DE ESQUEL, CHUBUT, ARGENTINA
SOCIEDAD ECOLÓGICA REGIONAL EL BOLSÓN, ARGENTINA

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