Colombia

The Bambas mine

Academic research confirms - more mining leads to more fighting

Mario Pérez-Rincón
Nick Meynen
| 9th January 2018
A recent academic study examined the data relating to growth in mining exports and the growth in environmental conflicts across Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. The correlation is almost perfect. MARIO PEREZ-RINCON and NICK MEYNEN examine how 'victims' of such conflict can become environmental ‘warriors’.

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President Santos: environmental saint or sinner?

Catherine Early
| 20th November 2017
President Santos of Colombia has won awards for championing peace and biodiversity. He was in London recently to receive the Kew International Medal, the first head of state to be awarded the honour by the Royal Botanical Gardens (RGB) Kew. But not everyone is impressed, reports CATHERINE EARLY.

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No more jaguars here: a worker picks up African palm fruit for processing into palm oil from a young tree in Minas, Colombia, April 25, 2016. Photo: Carlos Villalon / Solidarity Center via Flickr (CC BY).

Palm oil engulfs Colombia's 'mountains of the jaguar'

Paula Álvarez
Forest Peoples Programme
| 23rd May 2017
Thousands of small farmers were forced from their lands and homes by paramilitaries in Colombia's Santa Maria mountains, writes Paula Álvarez. But now as a welcome peace allows their return from involuntary exile, they find a new enemy that has come to stay - huge plantations of oil palm that have obliterated the mixed, patchwork landscape of small fields, villages, and swathes of forest on steep-sided hills that they used to inhabit.

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The UKEF export finance agency has committed £1 billion to support Colombia's fossil fuel sector. The Barrancabermeja oil refinery on the banks of Colombia's Río Magdalena. Photo: Javier Guillot via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Leaked: UK £7 billion export credit for fossil fuel industry violates 'clean energy' pledge

Lawrence Carter
Greenpeace Energydesk
| 16th May 2017
Between 2011 and 2016 the UK's export finance agency UKEF provided £109m to underwrite exports of equipment to coal mines in Russia, writes Lawrence Carter - despite the agency's commitment not to support 'investment in dirty fossil-fuel energy production'. And that's just a fraction of the £6.9 billion UKEF has lavished on the corrupt, polluting sector since 2000, while it was meant to be backing the clean energy technologies of the future.

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The four eastern cooling towers at the Drax biomass and coal-fired power station in North Yorkshire. Photo: Jonathan Brennan via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

No Drax! There's nothing 'sustainable' about big biomass

Frances Howe
| 10th April 2017
The Drax power station in Yorkshire is the UK's biggest CO2 emitter, burns more wood each year than the entire UK timber harvest, and is a major importer of coal from strife-stricken regions of Colombia, writes Frances Howe. This Thursday campaigners will target the company's AGM to highlight its impacts on forests, biodiversity, climate and communities, in the face of Drax's PR offensive to make biomass appear 'sustainable'.

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Ecologist Special Report: A multinational fracking boom begins in Colombia

Sebastian Ordoñez
Daniel MacMilllen Voskoboynik
| 7th April 2017
Information from Colombia's National Hydrocarbons Agency shows that at least 43 new fracking concessions have been handed out to multinational companies including Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips and Drummond. These concessions affect over three hundred municipalities, in the departments of Cesar, Santander, Boyacá, Cundinamarca and Tolima. SEBASTIAN ORDOñEZ and DANIEL MACMILLEN VOSKOBOYNIK report.

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WITNESS: Colombia's indigenous Wayuu suffer the effects of climate change, drought and rising food prices

Laura Dixon - La Guajira
Colombia
| 17th October 2016
La Guajira, a dusty but spartanly beautiful region in Colombia's desert north is in the grips of a crisis. Climate change, desertification and water shortages have combined to create a perfect storm for the local rural community: a drought so severe some places did not feel a drop of rain for three years writes LAURA DIXON

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At risk - Laguna Verde in Paramo Santurban, Colombia. Photo: Grupo Areas Protegidas CORPONOR via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA).

Colombia: there's no place for clean water under 'free trade'

Pete Dolack
| 14th April 2016
The latest country to be hooked under 'free trade' agreements is Colombia, writes Pete Dolack, sued for tens of billions of dollars by US and Canadian gold mining companies for valuing its national parks and the high-altitude Andean wetlands that provide 70% of the nation's water above the profits of foreign corporations. Free trade or clean water? You can't have both.

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The Cerrejón coal mine in Colombia, which supplies coal to UK power statins including Drax in Yorkshire. Photo: Hour.poing.

Ditch coal now! The global destruction caused by the UK's coal power generation

Anne Harris
| 28th January 2016
The UK's coal burn is not just having a huge impact on climate, writes Anne Harris. It's also devastating communities in the UK, Russia, Colombia and other nations that supply our coal power stations. Those impacted are doing their best to resist the mining companies that are destroying their land, stealing their homes and polluting their air and water. But they need our help!

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Colombian trade unionist Gilberto Torres taking part in a recent Art no Oil protest at the British Museum. He is taking BP to court over its alleged involvement in his 42-day kidnap and torture by a paramilitary group, during which he was kept in an insec

BBC fails to challenge BP arts sponsorship chief on kidnap and torture allegations

Chris Garrard
Art Not Oil
| 26th October 2015
Last week BP's Peter Mather - who claims to have 'green and yellow oil' flowing in his veins - took to the airwaves on Radio 4's The Bottom Line'. Evan Davies asked some tough questions, writes Chris Garrard - but failed to mention the shocking case of Colombian trades unionist Gilberto Torres, kidnapped and tortured for 42 days by paramilitaries employed by BP's joint venture partner.

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This time, it's tear gas: masked man at a farmers and student protest in Colombia, August 2013. Photo: Nick Jaussi via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Colombia's first steps of resistance against Monsanto's chemical war

W.T. Whitney Jr
| 8th June 2015
The mass spraying of glyphosate in Colombia, both on farmland and in the 'war on drugs', is a direct an attack on small scale farmers, rural communities and FARC rebels, writes W.T. Whitney Jr. But since the chemical was declared a 'probable carcinogen' Colombia has restricted aerial applications. The first step in a wider backlash against the toxic herbicide?

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The Government displaces small farmers, imposes outsiders, robs our resources, divides our peoples - leave us in peace! Photo: Asoquimbo.

El Quimbo, Colombia: Enel-Endesa's 'low carbon' hydroelectric racket

Philippa de Boissière
| 13th January 2015
For the world's multinational corporations, the climate crisis is just another business opportunity, writes Philippa de Boissière. One example is Enel-Endesa's 'climate friendly' 217m high El Quimbo dam in Colombia - a huge exercise in expropriation at taxpayer expense, backed by police violence against strong local resistance.

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Villagers stand in the ruins of their house after the 2001 eviction of Tabaco. Photo: London Mining Network.

Stop forced displacements by Cerrejon Coal in Colombia!

Richard Solly
| 3rd December 2014
Las Casitas is a small community living on the edge of one of the world's largest coal mines, writes Richard Solly - one inhabited by the descendants of escaped slaves, located in the poorest region of Colombia. The village is under imminent threat of forced displacement by the brutal corporation that runs the Cerrejón coal mine.

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Mariana Goméz Soto. Photo: Mariana Goméz Soto.

Gold is joy for one day - Mariana Goméz Soto

Hal Rhoades
Gaia Foundation
| 21st October 2014
Doima, a small town in the Colombian highlands, is on the front line of battle against a giant government-backed gold mine that would fill a nearby valley hundreds of metres deep in over a billion tonnes of mine waste. Hal Rhoades met Mariana Goméz Soto, an activist in Doima's campaign to defeat the mine project.

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Would you like this to happen to your land? The 'revegetated area' of the Yanacocha mine in Maqui Maqui, Peru, after 10 years of gold mining. Photo: Abramovich / Wikimedia Commons.

Community self-defense against mining mega-projects

Raul Zibechi
| 8th August 2014
If the state does not defend citizens against the violence and destruction of mining, people and communities must defend themselves, writes Raul Zibechi. And in Peru and Colombia that's exactly what they are doing, re-asserting indigenous control of the land and its resources.

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