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Argentina's Mining Sector Hit by Protests

LADB Article ID: 78526
Category/Department: Argentina
Date: 2012-03-09
By: Andrés Gaudín

Amid a mining boom throughout Latin America, from Central America to the southern Patagonia, with at least 120 environmental conflicts related to extractive activities, Argentina is also witnessing confrontation between social sectors and the national and provincial governments, pro-mining groups, and beneficiaries of mining's vital financial bonanza. Residents of several small towns in northeastern Argentina are protesting against open-pit mining ventures, which use large quantities of explosives to blast the rock where the minerals are hidden, cyanide in the leaching process, and huge amounts of water. In response, provincial authorities, mining companies, and the metallurgical sector are campaigning to win over residents to obtain the much-sought-after "social license" for an activity that, in the country and throughout the world, only gathers criticism.

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