Big Bank Acts to Protect Oceans from Mine Waste
Citigroup is no longer financing mining projects that dump mine waste into the ocean. The move comes in response to pressure from the Ditch Ocean Dumping campaign, which calls on financial institutions to divest from any
project or company that employs the practice. “Banks and financial institutions must actively take steps to ensure that they are not bankrolling the destruction of our oceans,” says campaign coordinator Ellen Moore of Earthworks. Mine waste can contain up to three dozen dangerous chemicals, including arsenic, lead, mercury and cyanide. These metals accumulate in fish, and ultimately, the wildlife and people that eat them. The pollution contaminates drinking water, decimates ecosystems and destroys fisheries. While the outdated practice has been phased out in many parts of the world, new mining proposals in Papua New Guinea and Norway signal that such dumping is being ramped up, not phased out.
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This article appears in the November 2018 issue of Natural Awakenings.