‘Mining threatens to eat up northern Europe’s last wilderness’ (The Guardian)

September 15, 2014 • Philip BurgessBlog, Challenges, Reindeer, Reindeer Herders

YaraThe Guardian newspaper carried a lengthy article on the explosion of mining in northern Finland, Norway and Sweden. As anyone resident in the region knows, there is a huge minerals exploitation boom underway and many are surprised to learn that this part of the world has very favourable regulations regarding the claims process for mining.  This boom is directly impacting on reindeer pasture loss. To give an idea of the scale of the boom, the article notes that,

So far in 2014, 349 applications for mining permits have been made, of which 243 have been for Finland. Over one-eighth of Finland, an area twice the size of Wales, has now been designated for mining and hundreds of applications for exploration licenses have been received by the government.

Currently in the Finnish media, attention is being paid to the massive open pit mine planned for the Sokli area,

Fertiliser company Yara International plans a massive 40-60 sq km open-cast phosphorus mine near Sokli in eastern Lapland between the Urho Kekkonen national park and the Värriö nature park. Billions of gallons of polluted waste water would have to be be drained, via pristine lakes and rivers, and millions of tonnes of waste would be created every year.

You can read one of Yara Internationals presentations on the mine here.

 

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