• The peaceful resistance   of la Puya in Guatemala  vs. KCA
    The peaceful resistance of la Puya in Guatemala vs. KCA

    International Allies, such as IPS, MiningWatch Canada, CIEL, and Earthworks are collaborating with other international and Guatemalan organizations to support communities peacefully resisting the ‘El Tambor’ gold mining project.  As a result of the successful resistance that led to the suspension of the project, Nevada based KCA has launched a US$300M international arbitration suit against Guatemala under the terms of the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA). MORE INFO

  •  Supporting the   implementation of the   mining ban in El   Salvador
    Supporting the implementation of the mining ban in El Salvador

    We have continued to support  the activities of member organizations of the National Roundtable Against Metallic Mining, a grassroots coalition that led  a local movement to prohibit mining in March 2017. Since the mining prohibition, local organizations have continued to advocate with government authorities measures to ensure a proper implementation of the prohibition laws. The environmental movement has now formed the National Alliance against the Privatization of Water to fight attempts by the Legislative Assembly to privatice the management and distribution of water resources as the new government of president Nayib Bukele moves the country towards a more bussiness friendly environment.  MORE INFO

  • Following the tracks of   OceanaGold in the   Philippines
    Following the tracks of OceanaGold in the Philippines

    While OceanaGold has left El Salvador, the company still owns projects around the world that are facing community resistance. In nueva Vizcaya, Philippines, communities affected by the Didipio mine have been been resisting since 2007. The company has been linked to human rights violations such as failing to obtain free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC) from local indigenous communites, forced demolitions, pollution of rivers, unjust conditions of workers, illegal arrests and defamation against environmental activists and community leaders who oppose the mine. Currently,  IPS and Miningwatch Canada are supporting a coalition of communities, state government institutions and environmental organizations such as Alyansa Tigil Mina and the Kalikasan people´s Network as they fight to prevent OceanaGold from having its permit renewed. MORE INFO

  • Extraction Casino report in Colombia
    Extraction Casino report in Colombia

    In 2016, after massive protests led by the Committee in Defense of the Water and the Santurbán Highland, Colombia's Constitutional Court put the final nail in the coffin to a large gold mining project let by Canadian company Eco Oro. The court decided that no extractive activities could take place in the high-mountain ecosystems known as the ‘páramos’. As a result, Eco Oro Minerals is suing Colombian state for $764 million USD. The Comité and Colombian social organizations are now ready to mount a campaign, with international support, to dennounce the unjust lawsuit.

  • International Allies Against Mining in El SalvadorWe are a group of organisations from Australia Canada, Europe and the U.S. that support the Salvadoran people's demand for sovereignty, the right to water and healthy communities. We coordinate our work with the National Roundtable against Metallic Mining in El Salvador and with communities directly affected by mining projects.  

    Read More
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(Washington/Ottawa/San Salvador/Melbourne) On November 21, Pacific Rim Mining shareholders are poised to approve sale of the company to Melbourne-based OceanaGold in order to continue suing El Salvador in a World Bank tribunal. Pacific Rim has been suing the small Central American nation for not having granted it a mine permit ever since a presidential pronouncement to suspend all mining activity in the country. The last-minute deal rescues a sinking Pacific Rim Mining, while promising to cost Salvadorans millions more in an unjust arbitration process and raising fears of political interference.
 
The deal, valued at a mere $10.2 million for a swap of company shares, is a pittance compared to what the company hopes to extract from El Salvador, either through the $301 million arbitration suit or through reaching a deal with the Salvadoran government to advance a gold project in the northern department of Cabañas. In a press release, OceanaGold said it would try to negotiate a deal with Salvadoran authorities.
 
The National Roundtable on Metal Mining, a diverse coalition of civil society organizations in El Salvador, responded with concern to OceanaGold’s intentions, fearing undue pressure on legislators during electoral season. The coalition is already worried that legislators have stalled consideration of proposed legislation to ban metal mining in the densely populated country, which has widespread support across the country, including from the highest ranks of the Catholic Church.
 
“Salvadorans ask that this project be stopped. Canada has so many good people. Ask those transnational companies to stop committing terrible injustices and exploiting the people of El Salvador. We are not very happy about this judicial dispute, they are asking us to pay them millions. But if it comes down to it, I think it is better to pay the money, than to pay the consequences,” Archbishop José Luis Escobar Alas recently stated to a Canadian national radio reporter.


Pacific Rim Mining’s track record in El Salvador gave rise to broad opposition, starting when local communities saw the impacts of the company’s exploration work and as they learned about the dirty legacy of mining in neighboring countries.  
 
OceanaGold’s own track record is also disheartening. Despite Pacific Rim’s claims that OceanaGold is a good environmental and social steward, its gold and copper operation in the Philippines has been devastating for local communities. In 2011, the Philippine Human Rights Commission recommended the revocation of OceanaGold’s mining license, citing forcible and illegal demolitions, the harassment of residents, and the indigenous community’s right to culture.[1] Residents have complained of “dirty water” downstream from the open-pit mine operation and of dead fish washing up on the shore.


“The economic, social and environmental reality of OceanaGold’s Didipio mine confirms the worst fears of the Salvadoran people and government,” said Dr. Robin Broad of American University in Washington, D.C. after traveling to the Didipio mine in August 2013.
 
Concerned Australian citizens and social organizations have already started a public education campaign to denounce OceanaGold’s acquisition of Pacific Rim’s El Dorado project and to demand that Pacific Rim drop its suit against the government of El Salvador.
 
With headquarters in Melbourne, Australia, OceanaGold is owned by a holding company registered in British Colombia. It trades on the Australian, New Zealand and Toronto stock exchanges and has operations in the Philippines, New Zealand and Australia.

 
Contacts:
 
Canada

El Salvador

  • Pedro Cabezas, Coordinator for the International Allies Against Mining in El Salvador, 503-7755-1423, stopesmining@gmail.com

 United States

 Australia

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