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Mining The Earth: 7 Sep 2014

IMG_2496_final001

Grand Canyon 20-year uranium mining ban still in force, for now

Mining The Earth:

*AZ.  Yay!  US District Court  judge has ruled “to uphold the Obama administration’s 20-year ban on new uranium mining claims across one million acres of public lands adjacent to the Grand Canyon.”  But will there be an appeal?

*CA-OR.  A proposed nickel mine in CA stalled when Oregon Water Resources Department refused  “to allow [London-based] Red Flat Nickel Corp. to use water for drilling on a major tributary of the Smith River” since it would “impair or be detrimental to the public interest.”  Nonetheless, Red Flat Nickel still has many claims in the headwaters of the Smith and Illinois Rivers.

*FL Joint project between Tampa International Airport and Tampa Electric Co. “to install a canopy of solar panels on the top floor of the airport’s south Economy Parking Garage.”   Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of TECO Energy which includes TECO Coal, “which owns and operates coal-production facilities in Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia.”

*NV.  Searchlight is Sen. Harry Reid (D)’s home and gold country. Nevada Milling and Mining (owned by SD and MI investors) has come to Searchlight to operate the old Blossom and Coyote Mines.  Is there much gold in the mines?  Apparently there’s an old saying, “The best place to find minerals is where they’ve already been found.”

*PA.  Bit of an imbroglio over in Ashley, Luzerne County, with one party wanting to open a coal mine but not indicating exactly where or how they’ll mine, and another party claiming talk of buried steel was “a scam”.  Not only that, but if they do mine where someone’s guessing there is coal, they might endanger the Earth Conservancy building.   And there’s more, including use of a giant magnet.

*WI. 20 WI counties now have sand mineswith 20 more anticipated.  The sand is used in fracking.   Environmentalists  worry “that acrylamide [used in sand processing] will taint surface and groundwater.”  Occupational health experts worry about microscopic particles released in the mining process.  In addition, sand mining requires huge amounts of water.  That and more is in the Civil Society Institute’s newly released study on risks to communities from sand mining for fracking.

More after the jump

CommunityMyFDL Front Page

Mining The Earth: 7 Sep 2014

IMG_2496_final001

Grand Canyon 20-year uranium mining ban still in force, for now

Mining The Earth:

*AZ.  Yay!  US District Court  judge has ruled “to uphold the Obama administration’s 20-year ban on new uranium mining claims across one million acres of public lands adjacent to the Grand Canyon.”  But will there be an appeal?

*CA-OR.  A proposed nickel mine in CA stalled when Oregon Water Resources Department refused  “to allow [London-based] Red Flat Nickel Corp. to use water for drilling on a major tributary of the Smith River” since it would “impair or be detrimental to the public interest.”  Nonetheless, Red Flat Nickel still has many claims in the headwaters of the Smith and Illinois Rivers.

*FL Joint project between Tampa International Airport and Tampa Electric Co. “to install a canopy of solar panels on the top floor of the airport’s south Economy Parking Garage.”   Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of TECO Energy which includes TECO Coal, “which owns and operates coal-production facilities in Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia.”

*NV.  Searchlight is Sen. Harry Reid (D)’s home and gold country. Nevada Milling and Mining (owned by SD and MI investors) has come to Searchlight to operate the old Blossom and Coyote Mines.  Is there much gold in the mines?  Apparently there’s an old saying, “The best place to find minerals is where they’ve already been found.”

*PA.  Bit of an imbroglio over in Ashley, Luzerne County, with one party wanting to open a coal mine but not indicating exactly where or how they’ll mine, and another party claiming talk of buried steel was “a scam”.  Not only that, but if they do mine where someone’s guessing there is coal, they might endanger the Earth Conservancy building.   And there’s more, including use of a giant magnet.

*WI. 20 WI counties now have sand mineswith 20 more anticipated.  The sand is used in fracking.   Environmentalists  worry “that acrylamide [used in sand processing] will taint surface and groundwater.”  Occupational health experts worry about microscopic particles released in the mining process.  In addition, sand mining requires huge amounts of water.  That and more is in the Civil Society Institute’s newly released study on risks to communities from sand mining for fracking.

*Canada. FIPA, the Harper administration-negotiated Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement, gives China unprecedented powers, including the right to sue Canada if China can’t make profit on its Canadian investments.  So far, there’s been only one legal challenger, the 300-member Hupacasath First Nations of Vancouver Island, BC, which is deeply concerned about FIPA’s impact on natural resources, “the wildlife, . . . clean water, clean air, and jobs to sustain their families” and First Nations rights to manage their own resources.

*Canada.  Two Innu chiefs traveled more than 1,000 kilometres to Montreal to return two heavy iron stones given to their communities in 1970 by the Iron Ore Company.  They’re called the Stones of Shame, symbolizing the destruction done by the company over the past 60 years.  Video.

*Canada.  What did Imperial Metals and the BC government know “about the safety of the [Mount Polley copper mine tailings] dam prior to the Aug. 4 breach . . . that flushed 24 million cubic metres of water and mine tailings into Quesnal Lake” in central B.C.?  The government is refusing to open its inspection files since it’s protecting “the integrity and independence” of an on-going independent investigation.

*Canada.  SaskPower utility in Saskatchewan has just opened “the world’s first large-scale coal-fired power station equipped with carbon capture and storage . . . technology”.  People on both sides of the renewables issue have expressed their concerns.

*Canada  The Northwest Territories just gave away $400,000 for mining exploration, with awards ranging from $9,500 to $80,000.

*Mexico.  The Mexican government “has imposed a new partial order of closure on Grupo Mexico’s . . . Buenavista copper mine, which polluted waterways with highly toxic waste last month, [thus restricting] water supply to about 800,000 people.”  Grupo Mexico might have to pay—wait for it —a whopping $3 million dollars for the toxic pollution.  (Grupo Mexico’s subsidiary, ASARCO, paid the US government “$1.79 billion for hazardous waste pollution in 19 states” in 2009.)  And here he is:  German Larrea Mota Velasco, mysterious billionaire owner of Grupo Mexico.

*El Salvador.  Australia’s OceanaGold  is attempting to force El Salvador to issue a permit for a huge gold mine. This has major implications for other countries, since  OceanaGold claims that the US-Central America free trade agreement gives it the “‘right’ to compel mining or be compensated for loss of profits.”  It’s suing for $300+ million, “almost half the government’s annual budget”.  El Salvador has very limited water supplies and knows the mine “would have disastrous consequences” for its people.

*Peru.  They survived the Incas and Spain’s invaders, but now people in Celendin, Cajamarca are facing Newmont Mining Corporation and the IFC which, in turn, are supported “by one of Peru’s wealthiest families and their private company Buenaventura”.  What’s at stake?  Mega gold mining, a $4.8 billion project, “currently suspended, while the state enacts anti-democratic laws infringing the right to peaceful assembly and social protest.”  UPDATE:  “Peru’s main opponent of Newmont Mining Corp’s . . . proposed Conga mine . . . is set to win the re-election” as regional governor—even though he’s currently in jail and, by law, cannot take office.  This is a victory, at least temporarily, for the people.  Peruvian anti-mining politicians are gaining in support around the country.

*South Africa.  Major donor to the right-wing UK Independence Party has: controlling interest in a former De Beers diamond in South Africa, a mine license in Lesotho, and a Facebook page showing him sporting a shotgun.

*Zimbabwe.  The US is all upset at Zimbabwe “over a plan to develop a [$3 billion] platinum mine involving Russian and Zimbabwean companies.”  US is threatening to “ratchet up” sanctions which are already in effect because of President Mugabe’s human rights and electoral fraud abuses.

*Indonesia.  A truck at the Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold’s Grasberg copper mine collided with mine workers, killing four in late September.  Protesters set up a barricade, “preventing access to the massive open-pit mine” and demanding better safety conditions.  Indonesia’s Mining Ministry is  now investigating the accident.

*Australia.  The Environment Minister has approved digging up some 5 million tons of seabed at Abbot Point for coal exports—and “to dump the sediment within the [Great Barrier] reef’s marine park”.  In 2013, “150 marine scientists from 33 institutions signed a letter warning Australian authorities of the mounting threats new coal and other industrial projects pose to the reef’s habitat.”  Their letter was ignored.  Queensland has now stepped forward, proposing the dredging waste be dumped onshore.

*World-Wide.  Huge open-pit mines, including Grasberg.
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