Guatemala mine causes cross-border water worry


Now an underground mine, Cerro Blanco will become an open-pit operation if a plan by owner Bluestone Resources and its Guatemalan subsidiary, Elevar Resources, goes forward. (Photo courtesy of Alianza Centroamericana Frente a la Minería)

Since 2007, operations at the Cerro Blanco gold and silver mine in southeast Guatemala have fueled concerns about its environmental impacts on Asunción Mita, a municipality 149 kilometers (93 miles) east of Guatemala City, the national capital. Now, green advocates are warning of the mine’s broader effects on the surrounding region of Trifinio, a 7,541-square-kilometer (2,912-sq.-mile) area of cloud forest shared by Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras and dotted with small subsistence communities. Fueling their concern is a plan by the Canadian mining company Bluestone Resources and its Guatemalan subsidiary, Elevar Resources (formerly Entre Mares), to convert the underground mine into an open-pit operation. Project organizers say they have received some government approvals for the work but have yet to complete an environmental impact study. The mine, 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) from the Salvadoran border, is in the watershed of Güija Lake, a 178-square... [Log in to read more]

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