Los Pelambres, comunidad Los Caimanes, Chile

Description
La mina Los Pelambres está ubicada cerca de la comunidad de Los Caimanes, a 45 km al este de la ciudad de Salamanca, Provincia de Choapa, Región de Coquimbo a 3.600 m.s.n.m.
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Basic Data
NameLos Pelambres, comunidad Los Caimanes, Chile
CountryChile
ProvinceCoquimbo
SiteSalamanca
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Mineral ore exploration
Water access rights and entitlements
Tailings from mines
Specific CommoditiesCopper
Molibdeno
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsMina a cielo abierto Vida útil 50 años/150.000 ton. diarias concentrados Ducto subterráneo de 120 km de la planta al puerto de embarque 3.000 millones ton. reservas de cobre al 0.65%, y molibdeno al 0.014% 339.200 ton. concentrado de cobre fino/año
Level of Investment (in USD)2120000000
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date1999
Company Names or State EnterprisesAntofagasta Holdings from Chile - belonging to Grupo Luksic (Chile)
Grupo Luksic from Chile
Nippon Mining and Metals Co. Ltd from Japan
Relevant government actorsComisión Regional del Medio Ambiente COREMA, Dirección General de Aguas DGA, Brigada de Delitos del Medio Ambiente (BIDEMA) de la Policía de Investigaciones , Instituto de Salud Pública , Andrei Tchernitchin, presidente de la Comisión del Medioambiente
International and Financial InstitutionsUnited Nations Human Rights Council (UN) from United States of America
Oficina del Alto Comisionado de las Naciones Unidas para los Derechos Humanos (OACNUDH)
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersComité de Defensa Personal de Caimanes, Agrupación Salvemos Los Valles, Movimiento Madre Tierra, Coordinadora de Defensa de la Madre Tierra CODEMAT, Observatorio Latinoamericano de Conflictos Ambientales OLCA, London Mining Network, War on Want, OCMAL
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)HIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
When did the mobilization beginIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups MobilizingArtisanal miners
Farmers
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Social movements
Ethnically/racially discriminated groups
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of MobilizationBlockades
Development of a network/collective action
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Hunger strikes and self immolation
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Waste overflow, 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
Potential: Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Global warming, Soil erosion
Health ImpactsPotential: Other environmental related diseases
OtherPresence of heavy metals in the tailing dam
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Loss of livelihood, Militarization and increased police presence, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures
Outcome
Project StatusIn operation
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseNew Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Compensation
Criminalization of activists
Repression
Violent targeting of activists
Corruption
Court decision (victory for environmental justice)
Strengthening of participation
There have been attempts at bringing the company to criminal justice (environmental crimes). There has also been shareholder activism: El 12 de junio 2013 activistas de London Mining Network, War on Want y la red Chile 40 Años participaron como accionistas disidentes en la asamblea General de Antofagasta Minerals Plc, un gigante minero chileno-británica que cotiza en la Bolsa de Londres. Los activistas mostraron su solidaridad con el pueblo de Caimanes en el norte de Chile.
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.Están documentados los daños generados al ambiente por la amenaza en zona sísmica del enorme tranque de relaves, contaminación de aguas, el río se secó totalmente y los pozos de agua y los suelos quedaron contaminados, y en general la afectación al medio ambiente y a las personas, sin embargo en 2012 ya se piensa en la construcción de una nueva presa de relaves para la mina.

La comunidad de Los Caimanes sigue luchando por su derecho al agua y a una ambiente limpio.
Sources and Materials
References

Fact Sheet Chile, Pelambres EJOLT

Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de América Latina OCMAL

Web Minera Los Pelambres

Veo Verde

Caimanes Resiste

La Gran Época

NO a la mina

Links

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Media Links

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Meta Information
ContributorPatricio Chávez, JMA y Talia Waldron
Last update08/04/2014
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