Digging the Earth and Killing the Future
Mineral extraction is wreaking havoc upon the earth and causing irreparable damage.
Raping our Mother
A new report by the Gaia Foundation, with support from several groups, including Friends of the Earth International, Grain, Oilwatch and Navdanya (India), draws attention to the devastating impact land grabbing and mineral extraction is having upon the earth's ecosystem. The report, titled Opening Pandora's Box - A New Wave of Landgrabbing for the Extractive Industries and the Devastating Impact on Earth, reveals that the amount of increase in world mineral extraction over the past ten years is staggering. All over Latin America, Asia and Africa, rivers and ecosystems are being poisoned and despoiled. Millions of acres are being ruined by mining activities, and each new wave of extraction requires unimaginable amounts of water to extract the minerals from their source.
The thirst for these minerals is a threat to the very basic necessities of life: clean air, water, fertile soils and food. Moreover, the landgrabbing and extractive methods employed are trampling the rights of farmers and indigenous communities all over the third world. Of course, these problems are being completely ignored by the industrial and economic powers that profit from these activities.
The report reveals that over the last decade, iron ore production has increased by 180%, cobalt by 165%, lithium by 125%, and coal by 44%. If governmental concessions such as selling land dirt cheap and giving enormous tax breaks continue, this massive acceleration in landgrabbing and extraction will continue unabated.
The reports authors write "We live on a beautiful and wondrous planet - the only one we know of in our cosmos. She suddenly feels very small and vulnerable in the face of the momentum of destruction we have unleashed on her, through our conscious and unconscious actions."
Preview photo from thinkstock.com