Chubutazo came

There is no megaminería without pollution, social conflict and economic looting. Thus in all parts of the world, and more in the global south.

In Latin America, megaminería constitutes a new form of colonialism, looting, territorial domination and ecological degradation.

It was from the legal scaffolding mounted in the 90` - currently and deepened today - that Argentina found a new modality of exploitation: megaminería, until that moment unknown in our country.

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This differs with respect to traditional mining fundamentally in its (great) scale and in its modality of exploitation.

This makes it inherently polluting, unsustainable and impossible to control. To extract disseminated minerals in large extensions of territory, megaminery is performed in the open, with the use of colossal amounts of energy, explosives, water and extremely toxic substances to separate themineral rock.

For example, Easter Easter Lama (San Juan) would remove rocks for 1,806 million tons throughout its extractive process.The Alumbrera (Catamarca) is authorized to use more than 86 million liters of water per day, more than the consumption of the entire province.

In terms of explosives, the data are also spooky: only in the Easter Lama mining venture would be thrown during the extractive process of 493,500 tons, almost the equivalent of half of those launched in World War. In the matter of toxic substancesThe data are also 2 daily cyanide trucks for more than 20 years.

They are also voracious energy.The three main mining projects of our country - the Alumbrera, Easter Lama and Agua Rica - would concentrate a level of energy consumption (subsidized) of 395 MW, which exceeds the production of the nuclear power plant in Atucha (375 MW).

Megaminería is configured as an exclusive territorial model against other conceptions of the territory and the weak regional economies.Thus, agricultural, industrial and tourism productions in the cordilleran and precordilleran areas are incompatible.

On the other hand, it is important to highlight that the almost exclusive destination of this type of mining (gold, silver, copper and other minerals) is the export of a concentrate, with null added value.This also accentuates an unequal geography of extraction and general consumption, which affects all of Latin America.

So we ask ourselves, do we not want cell phones?Latin America extracts 45.1% of copper and consumes 6.1 percent.26.2% of bauxite in the world but only consumes 2.9%.

Se vino el Chubutazo

Regarding gold, 15.2 % is extracted, but only 3 % in our territoriolus are consumed that we do not want from the global south is to sustain the metal demand for hyperconsume, the programmed obsolescence, of the global north.Nor to finance (with our territory, our water, our life) its energy transition.

50% of the world exploration budget in metal mining is for gold.90% of gold has no industrial profits (it is not for cell phones) but is used as a value reserve or jewelry.From the subsoil of our mountains to the subsoil of the vaults of Swiss banks

In Argentina, in addition, the legal regime applicable to mining has a differential tax and financial treatment that generates that immensely rich companies and extremely poor peoples coexist.In the provinces linked to megaminería (Catamarca, San Juan and Santa Cruz), this activity is far from becoming a development engine.After almost 25 years of exploitation of the Mine La Alumbrera and already in its final phase, the socioeconomic landscape of Catamarca did not change favorably, but quite the opposite, industrial indices and construction fell and poverty remains higher than the national averageand with percentages of assisted population through the various social programs among the highest in the country (it is the province with the most proportional au).

During the pandemic, 67% of its economically active population had to resort to emergency family income (IFE) and 50% in the "Minera" province of San Juan.

The royalties of the controversial Christmas mining project, from the Pan American Silver Minera, in Chubut, would only reach 1.6% of public salaries in the province.

In San Juan, the Barrick company, per Veladero pays only US $ 1.7 per 100 of minerals that extracts and contributes less than 1% of the provincial budget for royalties.

Metal mining currently uses just over 2,500, less than 1% of the total employment.Metal mining represents less than 0.045% of the economically active population (PEA) of Argentina.

Even in Peru, the mining country par excellence, mining occupies 2% of the PEA, against 23% of agriculture, 16% of commerce and 10% of manufacturing.

Despite the export boom of metal mining in the province of Santa Cruz, recurrently declared in "Economic Emergency", it has not even meant a "effusion effect."On the contrary, the articulations of mining activities regarding the provincial productive fabric at the same time of a strong increase in population dependence to the provincial state through public employment as damping of the provincial labor crisis have been scarce and fragile.The Chamber of Suppliers and Mining Services of Santa Cruz (Capromisa), of which no one can suspect antiminera, issued a statement in 2017 where he denounced: “Pan American Silver increases their profits leaving anything to the Santa Cruz” for the behaviorof the company in the mine of its property, Manantial Espejo, in that province.

It is so in all parts of the world: where there is megaminería there is social and environmental conflict and economic looting.Much more in our region, it is the tragic history of Latin America.

To top it off, the megaminería leaves as an environmental liabilities inheritance, during and after the closure of the mines for decades (which configures true areas of sacrifice), which will be in charge of the national state, the provinces and, above all, the populations.

Now, with the case of the "Chubutazo", it was very surprising as national officials, and even "progress" media and journalists, like - like Loritos - the speech armed by the Panamerican Silver mining company (the “Christmas” project on the central plateauChubutense).But traced, as if they were reading it.Thus underestimating the population, half province in the streets in the main cities of the province, and the very important contributions of CONICET scientists and researchers from national universities that warned of the socio -environmental impacts of the activity: "Megaminería represents a threat scenario, in the face of a vulnerable environmental system that takes on special relevance when it comes to a province where superficial water resources are scarce "(extract of the official document of the Conicet-Cenpat scientific center).A Creole version of "Don`t look up", Leonardo Di Caprio's new movie and great cast.

The province of Chubut has been immersed in a brutal economic and social crisis for years.And not a few dare to say that it is a "design crisis", the doctrine of Naomi Klein's shock, to generate the sensation that the only way out is to enable great mining.But Chubut has 600 thousand inhabitants and has the largest fisheries in the Atlantic, the largest aluminum industry in the subcontinent, the most powerful winds, oil ago a century ago and the most attractive tourist wealth in South America.Chubut is not unfeasible!

The truth is that there is nothing more colonial than having public policies that deepen extractivism in Latin America, who has historically reserved the role of exporter of nature, without considering its impacts on the population or the socio -environmental and economic effects.

We are aware of the need for currencies that the country has and the link with financial debt.That it also works as a vicious circle: we need more extractivism to get dollars to pay, they tell us blindly because it is not even so.And, as the encyclical laudato points out if Pope Francis, "the external debt of poor countries has become a control instrument, but the same does not happen with ecological debt."As a country we must lead a regional movement to internationally claim the ecological debt of the North to the global south and ask "Who owes who?"The countries called "developed" based their material well -being on looting and plundering of our nature and atmosphere in general.We are environmental creditors.

Finally, it is the time that the ruling class of our country- fundamentally those that are considered progressive- put in question the extractivist model, go out to travel the territories to account for the socio-environmental problems and compete with the new debates that exist in everythingThe world about the ecosocial transition, rather than accepting, in an acritic way and disconnected with reality, conversion into sacrifice areas to the territories, their ecosystems and their people.