News

Families complain about big SC gold mine, citing danger and community disruption

The State

Sammy

Screen Shot 2021 05 07 at 12.48.37The reality of living near a gold mine is a worrisome thing, says Angel Estridge, whose family owns property less than a mile from a pond full of nasty mining waste.

She fears that leaks from the waste disposal pond could pollute well water, as well as a creek that runs by her family’s home, particularly since the mine has broken environmental laws multiple times. For now, she’s dealing with loud noises from the mine that keep people up at night, Estridge said.

“We’re on land that has been owned by our family for over 100 years in this area, and we were here first,’’ she said, calling the mine’s presence “really aggravating..’’

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Gold mine expansion could produce $2.5 billion. But environmental problems linger

The State

Sammy

Screen Shot 2021 05 07 at 12.45.06A gold mine that is seeking to expand in Lancaster County has again drawn state scrutiny for violating environmental rules, this time over excessive discharges of cyanide, a potentially deadly chemical used in the mining process.

The Haile Gold Mine, which stands to produce more than $2 billion in gold and silver from the mine expansion, has broken a federal wastewater law twice since late 2020 at the site between Columbia and Charlotte, state and federal records show.

The 2020 wastewater discharge violations, disclosed this week by the Department of Health and Environmental Control, are the latest in a series of environmental troubles to surface about the mining operation.

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WATER IS LIFE. CAN WE PROTECT IT?

FPIF

Robin Broad, John Cavanagh

lempa river el salvador water gold miningFrom West Texas to Jackson, Mississippi, tens of millions of people struggled through late winter storms that froze pipes, broke water mains, and cut off electricity. They froze without showers, toilets, or washing machines — let alone drinking water — for days or even weeks.

The irony that Texas, the state built on fossil fuels, was completely unprepared for extreme weather disasters shouldn’t be lost on anyone.

Fossil fuel and utility firms have long plied state officials with money. In turn, officials failed to regulate utilities, weatherize their grid, or create programs to weatherize homes — much less upgrade the state’s decaying water infrastructure.

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An unlikely eco-alliance in postwar El Salvador

The World

Joyce

the water defenders coverA new book describes how environmental activists in El Salvador brought conservatives and progressives together to institute a nationwide ban on metal mining in 2017.

The World’s Marco Werman spoke with attorney Luis Parada, who led El Salvador’s defense team in a mining lawsuit at the World Bank, and Robin Broad, a co-author of the book, "The Water Defenders: How Ordinary People Saved A Country from Corporate Greed."

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Urgent Action: Immediately release Guapinol defenders in high risk

Guapinol Resiste

Screen Shot 2021 05 11 at 16.24.12On February 9, 2021, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention sent a strong and clear message to Honduras: Immediately release the eight imprisoned Guapinol defenders.

In its resolution 85/2020, the Working Group stressed that there is no legal reason for the use of pre-trial detention in the case of defenders José Daniel Márquez Márquez, Kelvin Alejandro Romero Martínez, José Abelino Cedillo, Porfirio Sorto Cedillo, Orbín Nahúm Hernández, Arnold Javier Alemán, Ewer Alexander Cedillo Cruz and Jeremías Martínez Díaz and emphasized that the State is punishing them for being environmental defenders and for exercising their legitimate rights. Furthermore, it noted that there is no reason to prosecute them in the first place. The Working Group emphasized that they should be released and redressed and that those responsible for the illegal detention should be investigated.

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Mine reappears on list of suspects: Lead source inquiry welcomed

Otago Daily

Hamish Maclean

Screen Shot 2021 05 07 at 12.42.33OceanaGold has welcomed investigations under way to rule out all possible sources of lead in an Otago community’s water supply even after the mining company resurfaced on a list of possible suspects this week.
A no-drink notice was issued for Waikouaiti, Hawksbury and Karitane on February 2 after it was revealed high lead levels had been recorded in the water supply.

When the Dunedin City Council said this week it was replacing several kilometres of old pipes in the area at a cost of about $6million, council Three Waters group manager Tom Dyer included OceanaGold’s Macraes mine in a list of possible contamination sources suggested by the community that were still being considered.

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