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Official sector gold sales lowest since 1994

By Alan Septoff

August 6, 2009

From Gold Fields Mineral Services in Mining Weekly:

"Releasing its official-sector gold activity report, GFMS estimated that net official-sector gold sales in the first half were 39 t, down by a hefty 73% year-on-year.  GFMS anticipated sales of 140 t for the full year, which, if realised, would be the lowest since the 1994 trough of 130 t."

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Greenpeace study suggests oil, oil sands are bad investments

By Alan Septoff

July 27, 2009

Reporting in today's Guardian:

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Energy Industry Sways Congress With Misleading Data

By Alan Septoff

July 8, 2009

Today, Politico and Propublica jointly published a story questioning the drilling industry's claims that Congressional efforts to close a loophole in the Safe Drinking Water Act would be too costly. In fact, the story reveals, industry's own studies refute their claims.

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No Dirty Gold Featured in Social Investment Forum Panel

By Shreema Mehta

March 6, 2006

Oxfam America and the Social Investment Forum presented a forum called "New Frontiers in NGO-Shareholder Collaborations: The No Dirty Gold Campaign" on March 27 in the Rayburn Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

Oxfam America CEO Ray Offenheiser keynoted the evening, which also featured a panel that was moderated by Oxfam America board member Bennett Freeman and featured Keith Slack of Oxfam America, Steve D'Esposito of Earthworks, Patrick Doherty of the New York City Comptroller's Office, and Peggy Jo Donahue of Jewelers of America.

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The Proposed Pebble Mine: Some Time Bombs Don’t Tick

This week, residents of a small town in Canada are being warned not to drink from the local water supply because of a ruptured tailings dam at a former copper mine in Newfoundland.  Yes, another tailings dam has failed.

It's a stark reminder of the risks of the proposed Pebble Mine, where the mining corporations want to build tailings dams, which must be managed in perpetuity, to store up to 10 billion tons of toxic mine waste at the headwaters of our nation's most valuable wild salmon fishery.

The mining industry says that current technology can prevent failures. But the science doesn't support their claims.  A recent report has determined that in the ten years since there was a major effort to investigate tailings dams (ICOLD 2001), the failure rate has remained relatively constant - at one failure every eight months. These dam failures are not limited to old technology or to countries with scant regulation.  Previous research points out that most tailings dam failures occur at operating mines, and that 39% of the tailings dam failures worldwide occur in the United States, significantly more than in any other country.

Alaska's Bristol Bay supplies roughly half of the world's wild sockeye salmon, and supports 14,000 jobs.  This is a renewable resource that will continue to provide food and jobs for our nation as long as the fishery is protected.  There is no data to demonstrate that tailings dams can withstand the test of time for mine waste storage in perpetuity.  Bristol Bay is the wrong place to try.

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