Thursday, August 08, 2019

The Canadian Mountain Killers

In Turkey, twenty miles southeast of the ruins of Troy, sits the once beautiful mountain of Ida. Turkish fir has grown on this mountain since the days of Helen of Troy and for centuries those forests have been populated by deer, wild boar and jackal.

That is they did until the Canadian company Alamos Gold decided to dig for gold. Local environmentalists claim that the company has cut down 195,000 trees in preparation to mine the mountain in order to extract gold. This is four times the number of trees the company claimed it would remove in its 'environmental' report. Thanks to Greenpeace we can actually see the destruction caused by Alamos Gold using before and after satellite imagery of the mountain.

Greenpeace's Kaz Dağları interactive map ('Kaz' is the locals name for Mount Ida) includes satellite imagery from February and August of this year. If you swipe between the two sets of imagery you can clearly see the destruction caused by the land clearance in preparation for the Alamos mine. You can also clearly see why the locals are very upset.

Earlier this week 5,000 protesters gathered near the site of the planned mine. Dogu Biga, a subsidiary of Alamos Gold, claims that only 13,400 trees have been cut down in preparation for the mine and that the company will replant trees after they have finished mining for gold. They also deny the protesters' claims that cyanide will be used in the mines.

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