Mining

Arizona testing water after Mexican spill warning

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Authorities are testing water from the San Pedro River in southern Arizona that may be contaminated with toxic waste that traveled north after a massive copper mine spill in Mexico this summer.

Mexican officials on Monday issued a binational alert that contaminated water had made its way into the San Pedro River, which runs north to Pinal County in Arizona.

The contamination came from Buenavista del Cobre mine in Cananea, said Carlos Jesus Arias, director of the Sonora state civil protection agency.

Mexico: Alert over mine spill into river to Ariz.

CANANEA, Mexico (AP) — Authorities in a northern Mexican state issued a binational alert Monday after contaminants from a copper mine spilled into a river that flows into the U.S. state of Arizona.

Carlos Jesus Arias, director of the Sonora state civil protection agency, said the contamination from the Buenavista del Cobre mine in Cananea had reached the San Pedro River.

Officials have not said how much leaked, or what exactly was in the spill. Arias said the contents had not yet been analyzed, but the material is "probably toxic."

Western Mexico state reports new mine spill

HERMOSILLO, Mexico (AP) — Authorities in northern Mexico have issued a new alert of a river spill from a copper mine operated by Grupo Mexico, the state director of civil protection said Sunday.

The agency is urging people to avoid using water from the Sonora River after local municipalities complained of a toxic plume, said Carlos Arias, civil protection director for the border state of Sonora, where the spill occurred.

EPA pushes Pebble Mine decision back to February

Source: 
The Hill

In a notice filed in the Federal Register Friday, the Environmental Protection Agency said it won’t decide until February whether to block work on Alaska’s Pebble Mine, giving itself more time to review the extensive public comments it has received, The Hill reports.

Mexico: Company to set $151M trust to pay for spill damage

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A mining conglomerate will set up a roughly $151 million trust to pay for damage caused when one of its mines spilled acid-laced copper sulfate and heavy metals into two rivers in northern Mexico, authorities said Thursday.

Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo said that Grupo Mexico agreed to create the trust but that the $1 billion-a-year mining company still faces fines.

The total amount the company will have to pay to repair the damage done by the Buenavista copper mine in the border state of Sonora hasn't yet been determined, he said.

Mexico pollution, water disputes turn political

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Water pollution disasters in Mexico have turned into political battles as officials struggled Wednesday to blame each other for the problems.

A town in western Jalisco state is fighting state officials over what caused the death of more than 200 tons of fish at a local lake.

Jalisco state inspectors said Tuesday that the fish, a species of chub, were killed by high levels of sewage dumped into Lake Cajititlan. The head of the state forensics office, Marco Antonio Cuevas Contreras, said fecal coliform levels were six times higher than permissible limits. "The death of the fish ... was caused by the lack of oxygen due to the high level of pollution in the lake," he said.

Dominican president vetoes new national park

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) — A proposal to create a new national park that would have blocked the expansion of a nickel mine in the forested mountains of the central Dominican Republic was vetoed Tuesday by President Danilo Medina.

Medina sent the measure back to the Senate with a letter saying he had "serious doubts," about the effects of the proposed creation of the Loma Miranda National Park in an area where a multinational company was seeking to expand its mining operations.

The president also said there had not been any studies that concluded it was environmentally necessary to protect the area, covering about 16 square miles north of the capital with a national park designation.

Battle renews over reviving California gold mine

Source: 
The New York Times

Tim Callaway is making another push to resume mining for gold in the Sierra foothills of northern California in the face of opposition from his neighbors, The New York Times reports.

Mexican mining firm complains about probe of spill

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A mining conglomerate charged Thursday that it is being subjected to "punitive" legal actions by Mexican officials because one of its mines spilled acid-laced copper sulfate and heavy metals into two rivers.

Environmental authorities have ordered a full inspection of Grupo Mexico's Buenavista copper mine near the U.S. border and threatened possible fines of up to $3 million. Prosecutors, meanwhile, have filed a criminal complaint over the spill, which caused water supplies to be shut off for tens of thousands of people in northern Sonora state.

Late Wednesday, the Mexican Senate passed a nonbinding resolution calling for the government to cancel the mine's operating concession, a move that could affect the $1 billion-a-year mining company that provides 9,000 jobs in the area. The mine produces about 200,000 tons of copper annually.

Glencore swings to profit, announces buyback

GENEVA (AP) — Commodities and mining group Glencore PLC says it will buy back up to $1 billion of its own shares as profit for the first half of the year rose 8 percent.

The Swiss-based company, which created an industry giant through the merger between Glencore and Xstrata, says the repurchasing of shares will run through the end of March.

In its financial statement released Wednesday, the company says its adjusted net profit was $2.01 billion in the first six months of the year, up from a restated $1.86 billion in the comparable period of 2013.

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