EL ESPECTADOR, October 25, 2021

(Translated by Eunice Gibson, CSN Volunteer Translator)

The Quebradona mine is located on the border between Jérico and Támeses, barely 300 meters from the border between the two municipalities and the Andean bear biological corridor. The AngloGold Ashanti Company may make a motion for reconsideration, asking that the Environmental Authority grant the permit for the extraction of 4.9 million tons of copper concentrate, gold, and other minerals.

The National Authority for Environmental Permits (ANLA) ordered the application for an environmental permit for the mining project to be placed on file.

The decision was made after a technical evaluation of the environmental impact study, which was prepared after several field visits, after the AngloGold Company provided additional information, and comments by other entities.

According to information contained in Order No.09023, issued October 25, 2021, “The principal technical considerations that led to the ANLA decision to place the application on file are related to: the definition of the area of influence, the characterization of the hydrogeological, hydrological, geotechnical, and biotic components, considerations about the deposit of tailings (residue of mining activity), and the subsidence, among other issues.

ANLA, through a statement, explained that the environmental agency had made two visits to the Quebradona mining project; one visit was in March and the other in September of 2020. As part of the results of these visits, ANLA requested, in November of 2020, additional information, formulating 174 requirements.

“It’s important to emphasize that, throughout this environmental application process, as of this date, 211 third-party interveners have been recognized, guaranteeing citizen participation and access to information on the environmental permitting process to the adjoining communities during the evaluation process,” ANLA pointed out in its statement.

AngloGold can file a motion for reconsideration, requesting the environmental agency to issue the license for the extraction of 4.9 million tons of copper, gold, and other mineral concentrates from the mine at Quebradona. The Company issued a statement Tuesday morning, stating that it expects to receive formal notification from the agency that confirms “the intent to proceed rapidly to a solution that will respond to the agency’s requirements and concerns.”

The mine is located on the border between Jérico and Támeses, barely 300 meters from the border between the two municipalities and the Andean Bear Biological Corridor. They are trying to reach the mineral deposits in the area, which are located at a depth of 400 meters, and they are planning to use subterranean methods in order to exploit them. In the higher part of the mountain, the Company says, the exploitation would leave a surface crater that would be 365 meters deep and one kilometer in length.

This activity would generate nearly 119,000,000 tons of toxic residues, which they would place in a deposit of dry tailings that would occupy 160 hectares, to be located only 2.2 kilometers from the Cauca River. That deposit would also have a maximum height of 219 meters.

Editorial clarification: This article was updated Tuesday, using the public statement by the AngloGold Ashanti Company.

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