Tambogrande Gold and Silver Mine

Manhattan Minerals

When Manhattan Minerals proposed an open pit gold mine in the town of Tambogrande, local residents came together and stopped the project. The San Lorenzo valley is a lush oasis in Peru’s barren desert coast. The area was transformed into an important agricultural centre with the installation of a World Bank-financed irrigation system. Area residents were concerned that the environmental risks associated with gold mining would threaten their thriving agricultural economy. The municipality held a popular referendum on the proposed project – the first referendum of its kind in the world. The vote, which was monitored by international observers, registered virtually unanimous opposition to the mine. The Tambogrande referendum, which played a vital part in halting the project, has since been replicated by other communities[1] threatened by mining projects.[2] 

[1] Esquel, Argentina; Sipacapa and Huehuetenango, Guatemala; Cerro de San Pedro, Mexico
[2] Christian Aid. Mining in Peru:Unearthing the Truth. February 2005.http://www.christianaid.org.uk/indepth/502peru/index.htm