MAC/20: Mines and Communities

San Carlos passes ordinance to prohibit mining

Published by MAC on 2005-04-27


San Carlos passes ordinance to prohibit mining

April 27 2005

Diario Uno newspaper

Mendoza, Argentina - The Council of San Carlos has unanimously approved an ordinance prohibiting mining operations in this region. The ordinance 1.003/05 states in its third article that "any type of activity that involves the extraction of gold or copper is totally prohibited in San Carlos."

The council person introducing the measure, Jorge Difonso, who also heads the Environmental Commission, explained that "mining operations threaten the agricultural way of life of our region." He adds that mining, changing notably the quality of the soil and water utilized by agricultural operations, also jeopardizes the legal security and confidence of those who have invested in San Carlos.

With respect to a possible conflict between the ordinance and the federal Mining Law, Difonso, who is also a lawyer, stated that "an ordinance cannot conflict with a law, however neither can a law oppose the national constitution, and we value the municipal autonomy granted to us by the Consitution of 1994." Leaders of the Frente Diamante, a regional association which seeks to block mining in the Uco Valley, also expressed their support of the ordinance.

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