Radio Mundo Real

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27 de julio de 2011 |

Irresponsible Mining

Report exposes Barrick Gold over its operations in Argentina and Chile

Ecologist organization Greenpeace published a report to expose Canadian mining transnational corporation of seriously affecting glaciers both in Argentina and Chile.

The report’s title is a play on words with Barrick’s slogan: “Barrick: Mining responsible for glacier destruction”. It states the corporation has failed to comply with the Glaciers Law of Argentina in its Veladero and Pascua Lama projects.

Meanwhile, the Pascua Lama project consists in developing open-pit mining for gold, silver and copper extraction between the Chilean province of Huasco and Argentinean San Juan province, in the border with Chile.

“The Pascua Lama project included the relocation of three glaciers on the Chilean side (Toro 1, Toro 2 and Esperanza), but the plan was forbidden and the company was forced to change it. However, a 2005 technical report warns that the glaciers surface was reduced between 56% and 70% as a result of Barrick’s activities. In February of this year the company was penalized for continuing to affect the glaciers”, reads an exerpt of the report. It also warns that Pascua Lama and Veladero are located within UNESCO’s San Guillermo Biosphere Reserve and “they are located in a periglacier environment, something banned by the Glaciers Law”.

The report also mentions the denounces made against the Canadian corporation for damaging the glaciers. It calls the national and provincial governments to enforce the corresponding laws in order to put an end to the “impunity” of Barrick’s environmental damage.

Greenpeace also referred to the legal actions filed by Barrick against the Glaciers Law, describing them as judiciary blocking to implement the laws, which implied a self-incriminating act.

The report also says that nearly 75% of the Argentinean territory is arid or semi-arid, and it is estimated that “climate change will affect the drinking water supply in Cuyo region, which depends largely on the thawing water of the Andes”, which makes it especially damaging by negatively affecting glaciers through mining activity.

Photo: http://www.greenpeace.org/

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2011 Radio Mundo Real / Amigos de la Tierra