A rebuttal to COHA’s article “The Unfulfilled Promise of Informed Consent in Mining Projects”

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A rebuttal to Erika Quinteros’ article “The Unfulfilled Promise of Informed Consent in Mining Projects”

By Omar Jabara, Group Executive, Corporate Communications, Newmont Mining

To download a PDF version of this article, click here.

Dear COHA,

We appreciate the opportunity to respond to your article titled, “The Unfulfilled Promise of Informed Consent in Mining Projects”.

The piece stated, “Likewise, Carlos Santa Cruz, then the regional vice president of the American mining company Newmont, denied the communities surrounding the Conga project their right to prior consultation after years of conflict.”  To be clear, this statement was referring to the formal process known as Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). FPIC was specifically written and developed for the protection of indigenous persons (World Bank OP/BP 4.10 and IFC PS-7).

The Conga copper and gold project in the Cajamarca region in Peru was one of the most studied and reviewed natural resource development projects in Peru’s history. Between 2007 and 2012 more than 15,000 citizens from 30 hamlets in the La Encañada, Huasmín, Sorochuco and Celendín districts near the project participated in one or more of the public involvement opportunities related to the Conga Project’s Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Moreover, 4,000 local residents participated in the public meeting to socialize Conga’s Environmental and Social Impact Assessment. Conga’s community engagement team included 35 individuals who spent countless hours, on a daily basis, in and among the more than 30 neighboring communities,.

Stakeholder engagement continues with nearby residents, although on a more limited basis, as the Conga project is no longer part of Newmont’s business plan.

More information about the public involvement and community engagement effort surrounding development of the Conga project can be found in this fact sheet.

Omar Jabara
Group Executive, Corporate Communications
Newmont Mining