EARTHblog » Nick Magel
By Nick Magel
June 16, 2011
Sad and sobering news out of El Salvador today. Juan Francisco Duran Ayala a student activist involved in anti-mining campaigns in his community was found dead, having been shot twice execution style in the head. Ayala had been missing since June 3rd. Friends and neighbors said the last time he was seen was while he was posting up anti-mining posters in opposition of Vancouver-based Pacific Rim Mining Corporation s El Dorado gold mine in Caba as.
Pacific Rim has been embattled in a legal fight with the El Salvadorian government over the necessary environmental permits to continue their El Dorado mining operations. In fact, Pacific Rim has sued the country for $77 million dollars, claiming their rights under CAFTA have been broken. It s no wonder Pacific Rim is putting up such a fight with local communities and the federal government. Pacific Rim stands to make over $191 million in just 6 years.
By Nick Magel
June 14, 2011
Last weekend, Peru elected a new president. Ollanta Humala, a left-leaning former military officer, edged out conservative Keiko Fujimori. The election of Humala means many things for Peru and the entire continent of South America. However, I m most interested in whether his position on Peru s booming mining industry could position Peru as a global leader in responsible mining - with full community consultation and inclusion of environmental and labor safeguards.
Recently, Peru has cemented its place as one of the world s largest minerals exporters. The 2009 USGS numbers place Peru as the 3rd largest exporter of copper and tin, 6th largest in gold, and 1st in silver in the world. These rankings may very well increase given the increase in new mining investments made in Peru. In 2009, we saw a 65% increase from 2008 investments, spiking from $1.7 billon to $2.8 billion. In total, Peru s Energy & Mines Ministry has lined up a staggering $41 billion in mining investment through 2017.