The BBC is running a report today entitled “Canadian mine accused of causing skin infections”. The subject is Goldcorp’s (GG) Marlin mine in Guatemala and the report contains the two photos of children you can see here. The BBC report is clearly a hit-piece, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, either. Sometimes the world needs a nasty photo and a story of mining hatred to get the real story out in the open…just ask the locals around Monterrico’s Majaz /Rio Blanco project.
I’m telling you now that I’m not an expert on this mine and the ongoing controversy it has caused (today’s BBC note is not new news in the enviro-world). There are always two sides to these issues and there’s no way I’m going to ignore my own ignorance and rush to judgment on this. For a better idea of the story for the environmental protector’s point of view (and with plenty of links) I found this post dated to 2007 that sums things up pretty concisely. As counterpoint there’s a wealth of information, reports etc on Marlin and its operations (as well as the social spending projects that GG has sponsored) at this link on the GG company website.
What I will say is that those are really unpleasant photos for a father of two young girls who lives in mining country.
I’d be interested in getting a view from somebody at Goldcorp on this and I’ll be writing to the company with a link to this post today.