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| 3/7/2011 12:00:00 AM

Angostura mine: Colombia tries to cash in on gold

March 7--Extracting gold can involve moving mountains. Some believe it's worth the cost.

Plans for a massive open-pit gold mine in the upper reaches of the Andes Mountains have sparked visions of El Dorado — and fears of environmental havoc.

Vancouver-based Greystar Resources estimates there may be 10 million troy ounces of gold in Angostura, a wind-swept patch of the Andes near the tree line some 10,000 feet high. Angostura is one of several Colombian gold projects that could soon begin production if they overcome environmental hurdles.

“Colombia is poised to do exactly what Chile did 20 years ago: use mining as a locomotive for economic growth,” Greystar President Steve Kesler said in an interview. “This area could become one of the most important gold-mining districts in the world.”

But opponents call the Angostura project, which has received funding from the World Bank, dangerous and illegal. They have organized street protests, created anti-Greystar Facebook pages and demanded public hearings.
 
Read more here.

Semana International delivers news about Colombia in English. Find more in our home.

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