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Spanish activist group blasts exploration project in Huelva

Activist group Ecologistas en Acción (Ecologists in Action) issued a statement against Geoland Services, S.L., the company behind the Valdegrama project in the southern Spanish province of Huelva. 

According to the organization, Geoland’s plans to explore 2,000 hectares of land spanning the municipalities of Aroche, Cortegana and Almonaster la Real will endanger the Alcalaboza riverbank, one of the best-preserved banks in Huelva, which flows into the Chanza River.

The Chanza River supplies a big portion of the province’s freshwater and is part of the Natura 2000 Network. It also flows into the Guadiana River, which defines a long stretch of the Portugal-Spain border. 

Geoland Services plans to carry out 20 drill campaigns covering 200 metres in the area in its search for graphite, gold, silver, and nickel.

However, Ecologistas en Acción noted that some sections of these rivers and nearby bodies of water already have a water quality classified as “worse than bad” in the province’s hydrological plans. “This is fundamentally due to the destruction of their ability to support life due to discharges and spills from mining operations,” the communiqué reads. “The few stretches or banks that were not affected in the past by mining exploitation, continue to barely house important remains of biodiversity, among which are endemic and endangered species of freshwater fish such as jarabugo, short-headed barbel and Guadiana boga, which have their last pockets of survival on the banks that go down to the Guadiana, especially in the Alcalaboza and the Chanza.”

In addition to the NGO, residents of the area, farmers, ranchers and others have joined forces in the Alcalaboza Viva platform, and have also expressed concern over the project, particularly taking into account that there are already 13 abandoned, four inoperative and four active mines in the region.

Source: MINING.COM – Read More