Taking On Irresponsible Mining
Published: March 3, 2009
Issue 12 > March 3, 2009
Open pit mine in Ghana. Credit: Oxfam America
Newmont Mining in Colorado has announced that they are deferring their decision on building the Akyem mine in Ghana. The open-pit gold mine would destroy a quarter of the forest left in the Ajenjua Bepo Reserve and displace thousands of people in the area. Thanks partly to you and the Ghanaian and global opposition to the mine, the company is re-thinking that plan! The Ghanaian Minister of Lands and Natural Resources has also stated that mining should not occur in Forest Reserves, although permitted mines might proceed. We will continue to work with our partners to stop this irresponsible mine project. Read more about Akyem here.
Celebrating its 5th anniversary on Valentine's Day, the No Dirty Gold campaign signed up its 50th signatory to the Golden Rules for more responsible sourcing of precious metals. The retailers, representing 23% of the US jewelry market, have pledged to source metals that were produced in accordance with the human rights, social, and environmental criteria of the Golden Rules. Gold mining remains one of the dirtiest industries in the world, but the retailers' support can help us stop its destructive impacts. Read more here.
Last week, the House Subcommittee on Energy and Minerals held a hearing on HR 699, the Hardrock Mining Reform and Reclamation Act of 2009. This hearing is the first step towards passing 1872 Mining Law reform through the House of Representatives in the 111th Congress. The Subcommittee heard from six witnesses, including Jim Starr, a County Commissioner from Gunnison County, Colorado and James Reynolds, former Superintendent of Death Valley National Park, who both spoke in favor of HR 699.
Drilling in the Marcellus Shale region of Pennsylvania continues to face opposition thanks to concerned citizens like you. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that local municipalities can determine where the dangerous gas drilling can occur. Municipalities can use zoning laws to battle back against gas drilling, even though local regulations are pre-empted by state-wide laws and regulations. The court's decision now opens a new route for local citizens concerned by drilling to oppose it.