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Konstantin Rubakhin is currently in hiding. Photo: Konstantin Rubakhin.

Western sanctions could help Russia's environment - but will they?

Konstantin Rubakhin

19th September 2014

Sanctions against Russian natural resource tycoons could be good for the environment, writes eco-campaigner Konstantin Rubakhin - if only they would target the right people. But so far, the EU has been turning a blind eye to powerful Kremlin insiders with an open licence to pollute and destroy. more...
This $4.9bn diamond mine opens tomorrow in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Photo: Gem Diamonds.

Botswana government lies exposed as $5bn diamond mine opens on Bushman land

Oliver Tickell

4th September 2014

Ten years after promises of 'no mining' in Botswana's Central Kalahari Game Reserve, a $5 billion diamond mine opens a few miles from a Bushman village. Elsewhere in the Reserve, fracking is under way. And President Ian Khama, a director of Conservation International, denounces the Bushmen as 'poachers' and evicts them from their land. more...
Uncontacted Indians making contact with a settled Ashaninka community near the Brazil-Peru border, June 2014. Photos: © FUNAI.

Peru: uncontacted tribe flees massacre in the Amazon

Alice Bayer / Survival International

22nd August 2014

Survivors of a previously unknown Amazon tribe have escaped gunmen in Peru, seeking refuge with settled indigenous communities in Brazil. But as Alice Bayer reports, their problems are far from over. Many remain under threat in Peru, and even the refugees are at risk of common but potentially lethal infections. more...
Hazeltine Creek on Quesnel Lake after the tailings dam collapse. Floating on the surface: the stripped off the mountainside by the force of the spill. Out of sight: 14.5 billion litres of toxic mining waste.

Swapping red tape for caution tape: why Canada can expect more mining disasters

Carol Linnitt / DeSmog.ca

27th August 2014

This month a tailings dam at the Mount Polley mine in BC breached, writes Carol Linnitt - spilling 14.5 billion litres of toxic mine waste into Quesnel Lake. A major source of freshwater and one of BC's premier fly-fishing destinations, the lake will never be the same again. But it's just the first big victim of Canada's wave of environmental de-regulation ... more...
The recent protest of Mongolian herders in China's Bayangol province, Xinjiang Autonomous Region, before it was broken up by police. Photo: via Intercontinental Cry.

Mongolian herders protest - 'protect our grazing land!'

The Ecologist

8th August 2014

In China's remote Mongolian region, indigenous herders are being forced from their traditional pastures to make way for roads and vast mining projects. Last week they held a public demonstration - but it was immediately dispersed with ten arrests. more...
Would you like this to happen to your land? The 'revegetated area' of the Yanacocha mine in Maqui Maqui, Peru, after 10 years of gold mining. Photo: Abramovich / Wikimedia Commons.

Community self-defense against mining mega-projects

Raul Zibechi

8th August 2014

If the state does not defend citizens against the violence and destruction of mining, people and communities must defend themselves, writes Raul Zibechi. And in Peru and Colombia that's exactly what they are doing, re-asserting indigenous control of the land and its resources. more...
Protestors gather in Delhi today in the lead-up to mining giant Vedanta's AGM which takes place tomorrow. Photo: Krantikari Yuva Sangathan.

India - 'Foil Vedanta' protests erupt in Delhi

The Ecologist

31st July 2014

Students, workers and civil rights activists gathered in their hundreds today in Delhi to protest at the mining company Vedanta, and the Indian government's support of highly destructive mining projects in forests and on indigenous peoples' lands. more...
Davi Koponawa outside the Palace of Westminster, London. Photo: Survival International.

Brazil: death threats stalk Amazon shaman Davi Kopenawa

The Ecologist

30th July 2014

As gold miners face eviction from Yanomami territory in the Brazilian Amazon, a rising tempo of death threats have been directed against the shaman Davi Kopenawa following his successful campaign. more...
Unionists protest at RT's labour practices in Cape Town, South Africa, February 2014. Photo: IndustriALL.

Rio Tinto's 'sustainable mining' claims exposed

Kemal Özkan

30th July 2014

Global mining giant Rio Tinto markets itself as a 'sustainable company', writes Kemal Özkan. But serious failures in its reporting, and its attempt to hold an Australian indigenous group to ransom, reveal a very different truth: the company is driven by a reckless pursuit of profit at any cost. more...
Even in the 19th century, lead from Broken Hill smelters was polluting Antarctica. NSW Records Office, CC BY.

Lead pollution beat Amundsen and Scott to the South Pole - and it's still pouring down today

Joe McConnell

2nd August 2014

Ice core analysis shows that lead pollution in Antarctica took off in the 1880s as mining at Broken Hill, Australia, took off. Lead residues have fallen from their late 20th century peak, writes Joe McConnell - but they are still four times higher than in pre-industrial times. more...
Muckaty traditional owners Doris Kelly, Gladys Brown and Elaine Peckham celebrate victory in their battle to stop the imposition of a nuclear waste dump. Photo via Friends of the Earth Australia.

The nuclear war against Australia's Aboriginal people

Jim Green

14th July 2014

Australia's nuclear industry has a shameful history of 'radioactive racism' that dates from the British bomb tests in the 1950s, writes Jim Green. The same attitudes have been evident in recent debates over uranium mines and nuclear waste, but Aboriginal peoples are fighting back! more...
Threat on the horizon. The iconic Serengeti - home to one of the world’s greatest wildlife migrations - could be bisected by a mining-boom highway. Photo: William Laurance.

Africa's ecosystems imperilled by mining frenzy

William Laurance

24th June 2014

Africa sustains some of the most spectacular ecosystems on the planet - from the Sergengeti to the Congo Basin to the Eastern Arc forests. But those ecosystems and their iconic wildlife are now facing their greatest peril, writes William Laurance - a mining boom of unprecedented intensity. more...

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View of the Peel Watershed. Photo: Jill Pangman.

Wild heart of the Yukon in gravest peril

Jill Pangman

3rd July 2014

Next week the indigenous peoples of the Yukon challenge their Government in the Territory's Supreme Court, writes Jill Pangman. At issue, its plans to open the Peel watershed, a vast unspoilt ecosystem rich in wildlife and cultural meaning, for industrial development. more...
The colours of the Sami flag painted on a board at the site of the mine. Photo: Alec Forss.

The resistance is growing! Sami reindeer herders fight giant iron mine

Alec Forss

12th June 2014

A remote corner of Sweden's Arctic forest has become a battleground, writes Alex Forss, over proposals for a huge iron mine that would occupy a key reindeer migration route. And with their cultural and economic survival under threat, it's a battle the Sami cannot afford to lose. more...
Indigenous people of Tipnis arrive in La Paz after marching from the Amazon to protest at threats to their homeland. Photo: Szymon Kochański via Flickr.

Indigenous Bolivians are seething over mining 'reforms'

Isabella Radhuber & Diego Andreucci

5th June 2014

The government of president Evo Morales has approved a new mining law for Bolivia giving precedence to mining over other interests. It's proving highly divisive within the country - and indigenous communities are on the march to protect their rights to land, water and dignity. more...
White storks nesting at Coto Doñana, Spain. Photo: Ian Keith via Flickr.

Thanks to EU laws and money, Coto Doñana rises from disaster

Laurence Rose

4th June 2014

Spain's Coto Doñana shows the value of EU conservation law, writes Laurence Rose, as the UK tries to get rid of the Birds and Habitats Directives. Both have proved essential to the protection and restoration of one of Europe's greatest wetlands. more...
Yasuni National Park. Source: http://www.ecohustler.co.uk/.

Ecuador's tribes declare 'national mobilization' against oil and mining

David Dene

24th May 2014

Ecuador is facing an unprecedented confrontation between a 'progressive' left-leaning government and a national coalition of indigenous peoples determined to stop vast oil and mining projects taking place on their community land and villages. more...
Narsaq inlet - just the place for a uranium ore  port? Or a yellowcake plant? Photo: Claire Rowland via Flickr.

Australian uranium mining in Greenland is tearing the country in half

Antony Loewenstein

16th May 2014

Last October Greenland repealed a law that banned uranium mining. Now mysterious Australian mining companies are staking out the country for exploitation. But as Antony Loewenstein reports, local fears are growing, and political opposition is heating up. more...
Cover of 'Extracted - how the quest for mineral wealth is plundering the planet', by Ugo Bardi.

Minerals are finite. We had better start conserving them

Ugo Bardi

19th May 2014

Are we going to run out of minerals? That's the central question of a debate that has been raging for a couple of centuries, writes Ugo Bardi, when it first became clear that minerals are not life forms - and do not reproduce as we extract them from the Earth's crust. more...
The Carajas mine in the Brazilian Amazon. NASA image created by Jesse Allen, using EO-1 ALI data provided courtesy of the NASA EO-1 Team. Caption by Holli Riebeek. Wikimedia Commons.

Industrializing Amazon at risk of 'ecosystem collapse'

David Hill

15th May 2014

The Amazon basin faces 'ecosystem collapse' according to a new report about hundreds of major dams and other mega-projects planned for the region - home to the world's greatest rainforest. David Hill reports. more...
A fragile paradise: the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, Australia. Photo: Sam Harris /  University of Denver via Fotopedia.

Great Barrier Reef coal port challenged

Maxine Newlands

6th May 2014

Australian environmentalists have launched a lawsuit against plans to expand a coal port that threatens the Great Barrier Reef, writes Maxine Newlands. The approval came in spite of warnings from UNESCO and marine scientists that the Reef is already 'in danger'. more...
Indigenous demonstrators in Peru's Cajamarca province protesting at drinking water contamination from the US-Peruvian Conga gold mine, whose operations have been stalled. Photo: Diego Cupolo.

Despite 'progressive' politics, Latin America's indigenous veins are bleeding

Benjamin Dangl

1st May 2014

Left-wing, progressive politicians hold sway across Latin America, writes Benjamin Dangl. But defying their own 'green' rhetoric, they are committed to mining and other environmentally damaging development. Now they face growing resistance from small farmers and indigenous peoples. more...
The Mirador mine in the Ecuadorian Amazon would be comparable in scale to the Kennecott open pit copper mine in Utah.

Ecuador - upholding the Rights of Nature

David Dene

29th April 2014

Deep in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest, a gigantic open pit copper and gold mine is planned in the heart of the Shuar peoples' territory. David Dene tells the story of a growing international campaign to uphold and defend the 'Rights of Nature', in Ecuador and beyond. more...
Celestine Akpobari, from World on Want's Nigerian partner Social Action. Photo: WoW.

The new frontlines of war

Paul Collins

20th March 2014

This Saturday War on Want holds its Frontlines conference in London on the global conflict between communities and corporations, writes Paul Collins. Featuring a host of inspiring speakers, it will forge new alliances and new strategies of resistance. more...
Aleqa Hammond. Photo: Government of Greenland.

Sailing full steam into treacherous waters

The Ecologist

17th March 2014

Greenland's first female prime minister is on a modernising drive to prosperity and independence, But will the combination of melting glaciers, oil, mining projects and mass immigration bring wealth or destruction? more...

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