The international arbitration between the government of El Salvador and Australian mining company OceanaGold continues to wait for a decision. (OceanaGold bought the company formerly known as Pac-Rim). It is now a year since the arbitration hearing took place in September 2014 before a panel of arbitrators at the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes.
This week Lynn Holland at the Council on Hemispheric Affairs published an excellent summary of the moratorium on gold mining in El Salvador and the resulting arbitration titled For the Love of Water: The Ban on Mining in El Salvador.
She concludes with a discussion of the current plans of the anti-mining movement:
While Salvadorans await the outcome of the case, a new action plan for passing a nationwide ban has begun to unfold. In just the last year, several rural communities have passed their own prohibitions against metal mining. San Jose Las Flores, San Isidro Labrador and Nueva Trinidad, have all held popular consultations, which resulted in overwhelming approval for a ban in each case. As San Jose Las Flores mayor Felipe Tobar explained, “I want to encourage other municipal governments to ban mining in their territories and also encourage members of the legislative assembly to approve legislation to ban mining to ensure the long term sustainability of our environment.” Ten other municipalities have been targeted for future consultations.Read the rest of the article here.