Environment

One year has passed since the community of Cajamarc, in Peru's northern highlands, rose up against the “Conga” copper and gold mine, a US$5 billion mega-project proposed by the World Bank-backed Newmont-Buenaventura consortium. The unified cry of the protesters is still: “Conga no way!” The region bordering the mine site is home to an agricultural population that relies on the natural highland water system. Destroying this precious and fragile asset would end the viability of their existence.
The Plurinational State of Bolivia released the statement below on December 5 about the United Nations climate talks in Doha, Qatar. It was translated by Richard Fidler. Below that is Bolivia's official statement to the Doha talks. Both are reprinted from Bolivia Rising. * * *
There is no political will among rich nations to find funding for developing countries experiencing the brunt of changes in global weather patterns, South African Professor Patrick Bond, an analyst and activist on climate change, told the Inter Press Service as the United Nations Conference of Parties on Climate Change met in Doha. The talks took place in the capital of Qatar from November 26 to December 7.
Sydney's prestigious Hilton Hotel hosted the “PNG Chamber of Mines and Petroleum Investment Conference” over December 3-5. The event summed up the nature of the resource industry in PNG. PNG Mine Watch said on December 1: “The Papua New Guinea Mining and Petroleum Conference in Sydney will be a room full of white men dicing and slicing PNG’s assets with little or no participation or informed consent from the people of Papua New Guinea.
Where to start with an analysis of the mining boom in Australia? Perhaps ironically, with the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC). It is now holding an inquiry into the dealings of former NSW resource minister Ian Macdonald, his mate and Labor powerbroker Eddie Obeid, and another mate, John Maitland, former president of the Construction, Mining, Forestry and Energy Union (CFMEU), and part owner of the new coalmine in Doyle's Creek, to the tune of $9.8 million.
Stop CSG Illawarra released this statement on December 4. *** Today the suburbs of Wombarra and Scarborough were declared coal seam gas-free, by a vote of residents. Local Stop CSG members have been surveying households and an overwhelming majority of respondents in these suburbs want: their suburb to remain CSG-free, a ban on CSG development in the drinking water catchment and a freeze on the industry state-wide to investigate the impacts. 
Cartoon by Carlos Latuff

A major theme of this year’s US presidential election campaign was the threat to world peace allegedly posed by Iran’s nuclear program. Democrat President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney competed to take the hardest line.

Anti-uranium activists staged an action at the Perth headquarters of mining company Toro to coincide with its November 28 annual general meeting in Adelaide. The company is trying to build WA's first uranium mine (Wiluna) against the wishes of the majority of West Australians. Activists gave the company a practical demonstration about how hard it is to clean up after a nuclear accident by attempting to clean up yellow cake in the company office.
It's just about impossible to watch a commercial TV channel anywhere in Australia without being assaulted by slick mining company ads telling us how good they supposedly are for the community. Incredible amounts of money are being spent on these brainwashing campaigns. One set of these advertisements more specifically targets communities that are resisting the onslaught of the coal seam gas (CSG) miners, particularly in precious water catchment areas and prime food producing regions. These ads are often more targeted in their messaging, but they have been caught out lying.
Two spectacular banner drops on Sydney's Darling Harbour Convention Centre exposed some of the "dirty deeds" of the world's biggest mining company, BHP Billiton. Environmentalists and Aboriginal rights supporters rallied outside the company’s annual general meeting on November 29 to highlight the billions of dollars profit BHP makes annually from the dirty energy sector, inclduing uranium, coal, oil and coal seam gas.
Some environmentalists have justified their support for the forest peace deal — passed by Tasmania’s Legislative Assembly on November 23 — on the grounds of not letting “perfect” become the “enemy of good”. But a closer look at the details of the deal, which will allow the logging of native forests for another generation, makes clear it cannot even be called “good”.
The Wilderness Society Newcastle released the statement below on November 28. *** Concerned residents packed Newcastle City Chambers [on November 27] and faced a heavy police presence at a meeting where coal seam gas drillers Dart Energy presented their case to Newcastle City Council. "Tonight’s Newcastle Council meeting saw a shaky performance by coal seam gas drillers Dart Energy, under the pressure of local community members who filled the council chambers to show their concern," said Naomi Hogan of the Wilderness Society Newcastle.