Nostromo Research (London) has published a devastating critique of one of South Asia’s biggest proposed mining projects – London-based GCM Resources plc‘s Phulbari Coal mine in Bangladesh.
GCM Resources’ Annual General Meeting will take place in London on 16 December 2008.
Among the Nostromo report’s conclusions are that:
* The project threatens numerous dangers and potential damages, including the degradation of a major agricultural region in Bangladesh at a time of soaring food prices; pollution of the world’s largest wetlands; and making a significant contribution to adverse global climate change;
* The project’s Environmental and Social Impact Assessment is full of vague assurances, promising future mitigation measures that are inadequately defined and will almost certainly not be properly implemented;
* The managing company, GCM Resources plc (Asia Energy), clearly has insufficient practical experience of a project of this magnitude;
* Both the “Precautionary Principle” and that of “Inter-generational Equity” will be severely compromised if the mine proceeds according to its present design;
* The project will profoundly affect both the quantity and quality of water available in the area of the mine footprint;
* The likelihood of uncontrolled acid rock drainage has – by the project proponents own admission – not been adequately assessed; nor has the risk of a serious seismic event in the mine area;
* The project will cause a significant increase in emissions of airborne particulate matter with a direct impact on peoples’ health;
* There is little evidence that project managers have the capacity to ensure that proposed rehabilitation measures will actually work.
Read the full report here.
The International Accountability Project and Bank Information Center have published a detailed critique of the Phulbari Relocation Programme. Their report is available here.