What’s the problem with mining?
- Mining is one of the most polluting industries in the world.
- It has an especially negative impact on land-based communities, especially Indigenous Peoples.
- It is frequently associated with forced evictions, militarization, conflict and human rights abuses.
- Use of coal in energy generation is a major contributor to destructive climate change.
- Use of uranium produces a radioactive legacy which threatens the well-being of thousands of generations to come.
- In 2007, the UN General Assembly adopted the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, establishing their right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent before projects affecting their lands or resources are allowed to go ahead. Mining companies and governments need to respect this Declaration – but they often do not.
London is the world’s biggest centre for investment in the minerals industry
- Most of the world’s biggest mining companies, and many smaller mining companies, are listed on the London Stock Exchange, including its Alternative Investment Market (AIM). For an explanation of AIM, click here.
- British high street and investment banks, pension funds and insurance companies invest hundreds of millions of pounds a year in scores of mining projects across the globe, connecting working people’s earnings in Britain with the fate of mining-affected communities around the world.
- The mining industry’s key lobbying organization, the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) is based in London.
- So are the world’s most important metals price fixing mechanism, the London Metal Exchange, and the leading precious metals trader, the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA).
- The UK Government often gives UK-based mining companies diplomatic support overseas, even when their activities are opposed by local people.