- Published on Monday, 10 June 2013 17:43
ACAN EFE News Agency, El Salvador
The Archbishop of San Salvador, José Luis Escobar, suggested Sunday that the government should go to international organizations if the threat from a gold mine in Guatemala that could contaminate water in El Salvador is not resolved bilaterally.
SAN SALVADOR - The Catholic leader said in his Sunday press conference El Salvador "would have to go to international justice mechanisms" if the government can not prevent a mine which may cause damage in El Salvador.
Salvadoran environmental organizations have complained that the Cerro Blanco mine, located in Jutiapa, Guatemala, could contaminate the lake Güija and Lempa River, the largest river in this country.
The mine, owned by Canadian mining corporation GoldCorp Inc. is still on its exploration phase.
Escobar made a "call" to the government and Salvadoran members of the legislature to "have this resolved", although he acknowledged that the government “is taking action" on the case.
If it is argued that "it cannot be resolved" because "it is a problem of Guatemala", the fact is "that it affects us because we drink this water," said the Archbishop of San Salvador.
"It is not possible that economic benefits trump the health of an entire nation, never mind the death it will cause… It is not possible that in this XXI century we are caught in a legal and social entanglement that cannot be afforded" he insisted.
The foreign ministers of El Salvador Hugo Martinez and Fernando Carrera of Guatemala have been in dialogue about the case of the mine, according to a statement last February by the Salvadoran official.
Escobar said the Salvadoran Catholic Church supports the issuance of new water and mining laws, pending in the Legislature for several months.
The church is "in favor of defending the argument of saying no mining exploitation" and hopes that a new law "will protect natural resources" of El Salvador, he added.
"It is not right with these resources are taken away and (...) while the cyanide, and a poisoned a nation are left behind" added the archbishop.
El Salvador has suspended mining projects by government decision, but environmental organizations and other sectors demand mining to be banned permanently by law.
- Published on Thursday, 06 June 2013 10:38
Thousands of people hailing from different regions of El Salvador marched through San Salvador this morning to urge the government to stop metallic mining and to approve legislation to protect water in the country.
The Ecological Walk was organized by a coalition of environmental and religious organizations in commemoration of World Environment Day, WED - designated by the United Nations Environment Programme in 1973 to promote awareness on the importance of preserving our biodiversity and to find ways to take corrective action on issues related to climate change, environmental degradation and sustainability. WED’s theme this year focused on reducing the amount of food is wasted around the globe.
- Published on Wednesday, 05 June 2013 12:07
Public Private Partnerships open the possibility of mining in El Salvador
We are concerned that the PPP law opens the door for approval of mining projects in the northern region of the country. Our concerns are particularly fueled by the fact that approval for legislation to prohibit Metal Mining and the General Water Law, aimed at reversing environmental vulnerability and water scarcity, is still pending in parliament.
We believe that PPPs deepen neoliberal policies of privatization of public services that affect the economic, social and cultural rights of the Salvadoran population. We ask the Legislature that instead of enforcing programs proposed by the International Monetary Fund, they should approve laws that foster environmental sustainability such as the water protection laws, the prohibition of metal mining, and the ratification of Article 69 of the Constitution which establishes the right to water and food for all Salvadorans.
- Published on Friday, 24 May 2013 17:45
“Gold Mining and the Defense of Water in El Salvador”
International Delegation to El Salvador, May 10-13, 2013
May 22, 2013
From May 10-13 2013, an international delegation from 12 countries representing 22 human rights, social justice and environmental non-profit organizations and advocates, along with academics, journalists, artists and grassroots activists, carried out a three day tour of El Salvador to examine experiences with gold mining operations and the defense of water.
Pacific Rim’s announcement of a US $315 million increase in its law suit against El Salvador denounced by members of the National Roundtable Against Metallic Mining in El Salvador
- Published on Wednesday, 03 April 2013 20:34
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - APRIL 04, 2013
Canadian mining company Pacific Rim has announced it will increase to US $315 million its demand against the Salvadoran Government for failing to grant a license to exploit gold in the El Dorado mine in its northern department of Cabañas. Pacific Rim is suing under Salvadoran Investment Laws after the ICSID tribunal dismissed their case to sue under the US, Central America Free Trade Agreement, CAFTA-DR.
- Published on Monday, 18 March 2013 12:43
By Jim Hogson*
Vidalina Morales, a member of the board of a United Church partner in El Salvador, is part of the “Water is More Precious Than Gold” cross-Canada speaking tour. On behalf of El Salvador’s “mesa” of community groups, she’s talking about the struggle in her country to ban metals mining.