El Morro gold mine, Chile

<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns"><div class="less">According to the company, El Morro project wuld represent Goldcorp’s re-entry into Chile. Goldcorp holds 70% ownership and is the project’s operator, with the remaining 30% held by New Gold. El Morro promises to be a major low-cost gold and copper producer with significant exploration potential, long mine life and strong future cash flow. At December 31, 2012, proven and probable reserves totaled 6.7 million ounces of gold and 4.9 billion pounds of copper.</div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none">On October 22, 2013, the Environmental Assessment Commission of Atacama analyzed a final report prepared by the Chilean environmental permitting authority (SEA) and unanimously decided on the reinstatement of the environmental permit for the El Morro project, which had been suspended since April 27, 2012. The permit had been suspended pending the definition and implementation by the SEA of a community consultation process which corrected deficiencies in that process as specifically identified by the Antofogasta Court of Appeals. The company is still worried about the need for further consultation with the Diaguita indigenous communities, and also about the source for energy for the mining project.<br/><br/>The legal case is still open. There has been a succession of judicial decisions in the Courts in Antofagasta, Copiapó and the Supreme Court (in May 2014) where the Diaguita communities (through the lawyer Lorenzo Soto) claim that there has not been proper prior consultations as foreseen in Convention 169 of ILO. So far (in June 2014) the project has not begun. <br/><br/>There is strong participation of women leaders of the Diaguita communities, such as Solange Bordones. <br/><br/>Update Oct 10th: the Supreme Court ordered the project to be stopped thanks to the appeal by the Diaguita communities. The environmental clearance of 2013 is therefore not valid any more and the court also ruled for a new consultation process to be opened. <br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>El Morro gold mine, Chile</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/chile">Chile</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Atacama</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Alto del Carmen, Huasco</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>HIGH local level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Mineral ore exploration<br /> Mineral processing<br /> Tailings from mines</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/copper'>Copper</a><br /><a href='/commodity/gold'>Gold</a></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns"><div class="less">El Morro es un proyecto minero de cobre y oro ubicado en la comuna de Alto del Carmen, a 144 km de Vallenar, Región de Atacama. La propiedad del proyecto pertenece a Goldcorp en sociedad con New Gold. Tal como lo describe la OLCA, el proyecto minero El Morro consiste en la construcción y operación por 14 años de una mina a tajo abierto para la extracción de cobre. Se espera obtener 2.215 toneladas de concentrado de cobre por día, para lo que se requieren 90.000 toneladas diarias de mineral y generar diariamente 296.100 toneladas de material estéril y 90.410 toneladas de relaves. Alcanzando estos últimos -al término del proyecto- aproximadamente 450 millones de toneladas, las que serán dispuestas en un depósito contenido por un muro que alcanzará una altura de 230 metros.</div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none">El emplazamiento minero abarca tierras de la Comunidad Agrícola Diaguita de Los Huascoaltinos. Incluido el rajo minero de 362 hectáreas, un depósito de estéril de 595 hectáreas, un depósito de relaves de 470 hectáreas, un relleno sanitario de 10 hectáreas, un sector de acopio de mineral de 58 hectáreas, además de una planta concentradora y área de servicios de la mina, junto a un campamento, caminos de acceso y demás instalaciones de tuberías y electricidad. Cabe tener presente que el área de afectación, como consecuencia de la constitución de servidumbre minera, alcanza las 10.190 hectáreas.<br/><br/>Dentro de los impactos ambientales de este megaproyecto minero, destacan la pérdida de una vega ubicada en tierras huascoaltinas -de al menos 90 hectáreas- sobre la que se emplazarán las principales obras de la mina; lo que implicará daños en la cuenca de las quebradas Larga y Piuquenes, ambas tributarias de la cuenca del río Cazadero, el cual confluye al río Conay, y la desaparición de senderos tradicionales que siguen los cursos naturales de las quebradas y ríos. <br/><br/>Las obras requieren además del desvío del cauce original de las aguas de la quebrada Larga. También se contempla la modificación de flujos subterráneos por el emplazamiento del depósito de relaves, depósito de estéril y rajo minero. La pérdida de vegas e importante afectación del sistema hídrico de la cuenca, provocarán a su vez la pérdida de grandes áreas de vegetación y hábitat de la zona, entre las cuales se encuentran especies amenazadas en categoría de conservación, tales como vicuñas, guanacos, vizcachas y algunos reptiles y anfibios.<br/><br/>Por último, dentro de los impactos del proyecto se encuentra la afectación directa a al menos 145 sitios arqueológicos y/o patrimoniales.<br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>10,000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>3,900,000,000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Rural</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Potential Affected Population</td><td>4000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>2011</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/new-gold-inc'>New Gold Inc.</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/canada'><small>Canada</small></a><br /><a href='/company/goldcorp'>Goldcorp Inc</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/canada'><small>Canada</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Servicio de Evaluación Ambiental, Corte de Antofagasta, Corte de Copiapó, Corte Suprema</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>OCMAL, Comunidad Agrícola Diaguita de Los Huascoaltinos <br/><br/></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>PREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Indigenous groups or traditional communities<br /> Local ejos<br /> Women<br /> Ethnically/racially discriminated groups</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism<br /> Objections to the EIA<br /> Official complaint letters and petitions<br /> Public campaigns<br /> Referendum other local consultations</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity, Mine tailing spills, Other Environmental impacts</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>There are glaciers in the area, as in Pascua Lama</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Militarization and increased police presence, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place, Other socio-economic impacts</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Loss of archeological remains</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>Proposed (exploration phase)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Court decision (victory for environmental justice)<br /> Under negotiation<br /> New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study<br /> Project cancelled</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Development of Alternatives</td><td>To stop the project. <br/><br/>"Solange Bordones , cacica diaguita y vocera de la comunidad de Placeta (Huasco Alto), asegura que "nosotros no estamos peleando por dinero, porque con plata yo no riego mi huerto. Nosotros tenemos una cosmovisión que muy pocos entienden: no concebimos el agua separada de la tierra, del aire y del sol. El amor a la madre tierra es algo sagrado para nosotros, es una vinculación muy potente"... "Nosotros no somos 'descendientes de un pueblo originario', nosotros somos ese pueblo. Y en eso radica nuestro poder, que es ancestral".</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>Yes</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>For the moment (June 2014), the project has been delayed but not stopped yet. There have been several court decisions in both directions. There might be an appeal to the CIDH to enforce proper consultation under Convention 169. There might also be a negotiation between lawyer Lorenzo Soto and the company. <br/><br/>Update: on Oct 7th 2014, the Supreme Court withdrew the environmental clearance and ruled for a consultation process to be opened under the ILO 169 Convention.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> OCMAL, proyecto El Morro (May 2014)<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.conflictosmineros.net/contenidos/9-chile/16475-proyecto-el-morro-diaguitas-recurren-a-suprema-para-revatir-fallo" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Article on the Diaguitas, and their women leaders, how they have stopped Pascua Lama, Cerro Casale and El Morro<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.primerafuente.com.ar/noticia/237589-el-poder-diaguita-el-pueblo-que-tiene-contra-las-cuerdas-a-tres-megaproyectos-mineros" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> From the company's point of view, May 2014<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.mining.com/big-win-for-goldcorps-3-9-million-el-morro-mine-in-chile-25069/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Description of El Morro by the Goldcorp company<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.goldcorp.com/English/Unrivalled-Assets/Mines-and-Projects/Central-and-South-America/Development-Projects/El-Morro/Overview-and-Development-Highlights/default.aspx" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> [1] Indígenas frenan millonario proyecto minero en Chile<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.erbol.com.bo/noticia/indigenas/07102014/indigenas_frenan_millonario_proyecto_minero_en_chile" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>10/10/2014</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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