Last update:
2016-07-15

Gold mining in county Tyrone, Ireland

Canadian Company, Dalradian, proposes to start gold mining on the Green Road in Greencastle, Omagh, Co Tyrone, Northern Ireland. In 2016, there is growing resistance against it.


Description:

Canadian Company,  Dalradian, proposes to establish a gold mining ‘camp’ on the Green Road in Greencastle, Omagh, Co Tyrone, Ireland.  It will involve: a mine 1,000 metres deep;  a cyanide processing plant; a toxic waste dump bigger than the whole of Greencastle Village(including Maryville); several poisonous tailings ponds;   a huge tunnel through Crockanboy Hill (5m x 5m) and other infrastructure.   Mining companies such as Dalradian are willing to spend millions of dollars and make endless promises to obtain this ‘social licence’. They send agents (Community Liaison Officers) into the area to befriend people, bringing gifts to get people on side eg. Dalradian have given out £126,000 in ‘gifts’ to groups, clubs and organisations in order to ‘buy’ their support or silence.   However, in doing this,  they have caused divisions within communities and families.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Gold mining in county Tyrone, Ireland
Country:United Kingdom
State or province:Northern Ireland
Location of conflict:Greencastle/ Gortin
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict: 1st level:Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction
Specific commodities:Gold
Project Details and Actors
Project details:

Work at the site by Dalradian has included drilling, logging and assaying over 50,000 metres of core. It has also launched an "underground exploration programme", which involved up to 2,000m of underground development.

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Project area:80,000
Level of Investment:72,760,000
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:2,000
Start of the conflict:2014
Company names or state enterprises:Dalradian Resources from Canada - Mining company
Relevant government actors:Department of the Environment (Northern Ireland)
Invest NI
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Friends of the Earth NI https://www.foe.co.uk/northern-ireland/northern_ireland_index
Save Our Sperrins (SOS) https://www.facebook.com/SaveOurSperrins/
Conflict and Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:International ejos
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Forms of mobilization:Development of a network/collective action
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Impacts of the project
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Mine tailing spills, Waste overflow, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Other socio-economic impactsNegative impact on the small tourist industry
Outcome
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Conflict outcome / response:Strengthening of participation
Application of existing regulations
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:So far the project goes ahead. However by 2016 campaigners have managed to generate a shift in the public opinion.
Sources and Materials
References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

Ten fundamental concerns raised by FoE NI in relation to the processing of the planning application for a Gold mine near Gortin, Co Tyrone
[click to view]

Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

Situation explained in the Irish News
[click to view]

On the interest by investors
[click to view]

Column written by local intellectual and politician Eamon McCann
[click to view]

How attractive the project was for investors
[click to view]

Other documents

Ten fundamental concerns raised by FoE NI in relation to the processing of the planning application for a Gold mine near Gortin, Co Tyrone Document released pointing at a number of environmental issues that could undermine the permission approval
[click to view]

Save Our Sperrins Street protest with activists holding the banner of the campaign Save Our Sperrins
[click to view]

Ten fundamental concerns raised by FoE NI in relation to the processing of the planning application for a Gold mine near Gortin, Co Tyrone Document raising environmental issues against permission to go ahead with the mine
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Alfred Burballa Noria
Last update15/07/2016
Comments
Legal notice / Aviso legal
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