Newmont idles Mexican gold mine amid protests


Peñasquito is among Latin America’s largest open-pit mines. (Photo courtesy of Newmont Goldcorp)

After being the target of a month of protests aimed at paralyzing a gold mine it owns in Mexico, the Canadian mining company Newmont Goldcorp announced on April 29 that it was suspending activity at the site in the north-central state of Zacatecas. The surprise announcement comes amid apparent reluctance by the government of new Mexican President Manuel Andrés López Obrador to intervene in social and environmental conflicts, analysts say. Although at loggerheads over mining, business and green groups alike worry such disputes could become volatile unless the government gets off the sidelines. The Peñasquito mine, located in the municipality of Mazapil, is among Latin America’s biggest open-pit mines. On March 27, access to it was blocked by community members who claim it has depleted the area’s main source of water and polluted what was left for their use. They joined forces with a local trucking company that... [Log in to read more]

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