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[Report by MiningWatch Canada and the Sierra Club of Canada] Unlike most developed countries, Canada has no national program to deal with contaminated sites. Abandoned mines and tailings ponds create toxic nightmares, contaminating rivers, lakes and surrounding lands. Local communities are left to deal with the toxic legacy, or, frequently, to cope and live with the contamination and its impacts on their health and the health of their children. Recent increases in imports of hazardous waste from our trading partners, paired with Canada's inability to deal with existing waste properly increase the urgency for developing an effective national program to deal with the problem.
No one was thinking about the small Mayan community of San Andrés Minas, in Honduras, when political and business “leaders” met in Québec City, April 2001, to discuss the FTAA - “Free” Trade Agreement of the Americas. No one considered the community devastation wrought by Greenstone, a Canadian gold mining company, when it forcibly relocated the community of San Andrés. No one gave second thought to the destruction of San Andres' one hundred year old church. Not one “elected” leader protested the deforestation of surrounding mountainsides. No one cared that Greenstone illegally discharged pollutants into the Lara River. Not a single business leader spoke up to denounce increasing respiratory and other illnesses.
by a social researcher living in Colombia On March 12, 2001 the President and Vice-President of the union local representing workers at the Drummond mine at La Loma, Cesar, Colombia, were murdered after several months of conflict between the union and the company. The interview below was conducted in early May with a member of the union executive of the El Paso Local of Sintramienergética, representing the workers at the La Loma coal mine, owned and operated by Drummond, an American mining company headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. Sintramienergética also represents other workers...
People from Southeast Asia and the Pacific region came together in Manado, Indonesia from April 23-30, 2001, with others from the home countries of transnational mining companies, to discuss the issue of the ocean dumping of mine waste, known as Submarine Tailings Disposal. We believe that Submarine Tailings Disposal is dangerous to the marine environment and to communities that live in the affected areas. At this conference we heard about the environmental and social impacts of Submarine Tailings Disposal in many locations at Marinduque in the Philippines, at Minahasa and Batu Hijau in...
I wish to tender my resignation as Chairman and member of PEAK. It has been a struggle since February 2000 when I joined PEAK but my experience and events to date has forced me to this situation.
The coastline of Kenya, from the port of Shimoni to the ancient village of Mambrui, is under severe environmental threat from irresponsible mining. The Kenyan coast is a stunning tropical paradise, with its 250 miles of palm-fringed beaches, blue lagoons and magnificent coral beaches. Conservation International lists Kenya's coastal forest as one of the world's 25 "hotspots" — places of extraordinary biodiversity that are seriously threatened. A new threat now endangers these forests, coastal waters, and the agricultural communities of the Digo and Kamba people. Tiomin Resources, a Canadian...
Widow & children
On December 16, 2000, conflict over the development of a bauxite mine and alumina plant in the Kashipur region of Orissa in India turned violent with the killing of three innocent tribal people. During a meeting of villagers opposed to the mine, armed police entered Maikanch village and opened fire. Abhilas Jhodia (25 years of age), Raghu Jodhia (18) and Jamudhar Jhodia (43) died, and 8 others sustained serious injury.
MiningWatch Canada held its Annual General Meeting (only our second) in Sudbury, March 2nd and 3rd. The meeting started with a forum to discuss the recently-ended Falconbridge strike, involving representatives of CAW/Mine Mill Local 598 as well as various community organizations. Key elements of the discussion included the effects of Falconbridge's acquisition by Noranda/Brascan, and the use of ore from the Raglan mine to help scab the strike and keep the smelter running. The global reach of the company contrasted with the strong community support that enabled the union to survive the strike...
(From an article by the Sudbury Coalition for Social Justice) On Tuesday, February 20th, the 1250 striking mine, mill and smelter workers at Falconbridge Nickel Mines in Sudbury, Ontario ratified an agreement reached between the company and CAW/Mine Mill Local 598 the previous day. Falconbridge's Sudbury operations produce 4% of the world supply of nickel along with copper, cobalt and platinum group metals. The agreement ends a strike that began last August 1, just weeks after Brascan took over majority ownership of Falconbridge's parent company, Noranda. The strike continued...
Mick Lowe
Based on a CAW Mine Mill Local 598 newsletter article written by Brian Macdonald and Norm Chammus: Despite assurances from the company last spring that they had no intention of undermining employee rights in the Collective Agreement, on May 2nd, 2000, an exchange of demands was initiated and the Company presented a major document, complete with a lengthy list of concessions amounting to a complete re-write of the existing collective agreement. Included in the list of "take-aways" was the elimination of five full-time union officials positions, changing the stewardship structure, a...