June 23, 2010
Strike three for the Rock Creek mine proposal
It s good news for our ongoing effort to protect Montana s Cabinet Mountains Wilderness Area and the area s threatened bull trout and grizzly bear populations from the proposed Rock Creek Mine.
On May 5, 2010, a federal court tossed out the mine permit, saying it fails to minimize impacts to water quality and fisheries.
This is the third time that the court has ruled against this project. The mine must now go back to the drawing board to develop a revised plan. With your support, we will continue our efforts to protect this important ecosystem.
Strike... four? The fisheries challenge in Montana State Court
In 2008, EARTHWORKS and our partners also contested a permit issued by the State of Montana, challenging the large amount of sediment that the mine is expected to discharge into Rock Creek, a lower Clark Fork tributary that supports a crucial population of bull trout, a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. State water quality law prohibits anyone from discharging sediment into state waters at levels that will harm fisheries. That case will be briefed in front of the Court in September.
For more information:
June 16, 2010
Afghanistan could become the latest country to see conflict bloom in the name of mining. The Pentagon has been busy helping promote the country as a potential new mining bonanza worth $1 trillion. The potential is there -- maybe for mining companies to make lots of money, but also for mining to fuel conflict and cause further disasters for communities and the environment. Afghani Blood Gold could be on its way.
June 11, 2010
A tragedy for communities in northern Nigerian has revealed some of the hidden costs of gold jewelry. Over 160 people, mainly children, have died in Nigeria from exposure to lead released by small-scale gold mining. Looks like Zamfara state in Nigeria is another place where gold is tinged with the blood of poisoned communities.
By Gwen Lachelt
June 11, 2010
Last week we sent a letter to the Bureau of Land Management, DOI Secretary Ken Salazar and President Obama in support of the Open Space Pilot Project, a unique public/private collaboration to bring innovative oil and gas development practices to northwestern New Mexico.
June 8, 2010
Today was bad news for people living next to the natural gas fields nationwide. Two incidents led to injuries and environmental mayhem in Texas and West Virginia, while in Pennsylvania the Moshannon State Forest was still reeling from clean up from last Friday s well blowout. Before reading on, take a minute to help stop this madness at http://frackaction.earthworksaction.org
South of Dallas, Texas, when electrical company workers drilled into a natural gas pipeline, the area expoded into a furnace where the heat was described as unbearable 900 feet away from the explosion. The plume of flame was visible from several miles away. Initially three people were reported dead and several injured; the latest reports indicate that one person remains missing and at least seven were hospitalized.
Texans working to improve set-asides for natural gas infrastructure have been arguing for 1000-foot setbacks away from homes, schools and other buildings. The current law calls for 150-foot setbacks. The Wall Street Journal, in an aside, also points out that Cleburne, Texas, where the explosion occurred, was the site of a series of small earthquakes last year linked to natural gas drilling.
Incidents are on the rise