A new turn in the activities of the Winter Mine, the project of the Carboferogroup of the Angelini and Von Apena groups, located on Isla Riesco, took place this Friday after the Valdivia Environmental Court, which has jurisdiction from Ubl to Magallão, determined that it suspends the Resolution environment approved in September of this year, which allowed the use of blasting as an additional method of coal mining.
“This means that until the demand is resolved, the activity that has been authorized (explosives) cannot be fulfilled,” said Minister Ivn Hunter of the Tribunal. The beginning of these events was scheduled for the end of this year or the beginning of the next.
This measure, requested by the environmental activist, affects the situation previously made by the Executive Director of the Environmental Assessment Service. The applicant claimed that the use of explosives would affect the paleontological heritage of this area. In its resolution, the court noted that "the measure requested is suitable to prevent the risk of destruction of paleontological data that may have singularity value."
NGOs celebrate and bother workers
The representative of Alerta Isla Riesco, a non-governmental organization that opposes the carbonferro project, Gregor Stipich, recalled that "we have always spoken on different topics not only in paleontology, that there is disinformation and that it is directly related to the impact on the environment that occurs by explosion" .
Stipich recalls that a precautionary measure was taken, and the court considered that information and risk could not be affected because there are paleobotanical deposits. “In this aspect, the start of blasting operations is suspended at the moment, regardless of whether the mine can continue,” he warned.
A spokesman for the miners' union 1, Jorge Espinoza, indicated that they are concerned that, together with other trade union leaders and the legal adviser, they will analyze the situation to assess future actions. “This is a problem that we see because the resource was there,” he said. Currently, the company employs 600 workers directly and another 400 with service providers.
Since the Winter Mine, they have refused to refer to this question, because they have not yet been notified of the court decision.
Since its inception, the project has been confronted with a number of disputes with environmental organizations that sued them, as in 2015, when the Supreme Court rejected the appeal submitted to them.
Winter Mine is the first project of this field, which will be launched for more than two decades.