Thursday, July 23, 2009
It looks very awkward at times when we talk about atrocities committed by Barrick Gold Corporation in the communities they operate. A lot of people think that people exaggerate when reports have it that Barrick Gold Corporation is poor on CSR and putting more lives in danger. It does not just happen in Tanzania but in Australia and other places. We need to learn from our friends who are facing the same case in the other parts of the world. A few people determined to rescue their land can defeat a legion, no matter how powerful…
Neville Chappy Williams, who has consistently opposed the open-pit mine at Lake Cowal in the middle of the Murray-Darling Basin, has delivered documents to the Deputy Canadian High Commissioner, Mr René Cremonese,
and the Minerals Council of Australia in Canberra as part of the Global Day of Action against open-pit mining.
Neville Chappy Williams is a Traditional Owner of Lake Cowal and has fought many court cases against mining at Lake Cowal.
“It is my sacred duty to protect Lake Cowal and our ancient cultural heritage. We will never give up. I will fight to the bitter end.” Currently, he has halted the proposed expansion of the gold mine in Barrick v Williams in the NSW Court of Appeal.
“The Lake Cowal gold mine operated by Barrick Gold from Toronto, Canada is desecrating our sacred heartland of the Wiradjuri between the Kalara/Lachlan and the Murrumbidgee rivers in central west New South Wales.
Lake Cowal is an ephemeral lake and also a wetland of international significance – home and breeding ground to thousands of water birds when full, including numerous endangered species.
“The open-pit cuts into the ancient lake bed and already there have been at least twenty landslides as the pitwall collapses, at times covering blast holes full of explosives and endangering workers’ lives.”
“Barrick is importing 6090 tonnes of sodium cyanide into the floodplain of Lake Cowal and the Kalara/Lachlan river, which becomes an inland sea during major flooding.”
“We have even been to Barrick’s AGMs and to the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues to stop this madness. But the governments seem hand in glove with the mining company.” Neville Chappy Williams concludes.