Spanish environmentalists demand mine closures

Reference image of Los Frailes mine in the Spanish province of Seville. Photo by Ecologistas En Acción.

Activist group Ecologists in Action and other organizations visited the European Parliament in Brussels and demanded the closure of all active mines in Spain.

Backed by left-wing MP Xabier Benito, the environmentalists organized a conference titled “Mining in Europe: the new extractive challenge.” At the forum, they said that mining activities, which in their view have been experiencing a boom in Spain for the past five years, endanger nature, cities and jobs.

Civil society representatives hailing from Cantabria, Aragón, Galicia, Ávila, Salamanca, Sevilla and Ciudad Real also attended the event. They said their communities are affected by lithium, tin, lead, tungsten, uranium, and copper operations.

At the meeting, the anti-mining advocates also addressed issues related to mining activities in Finland, where there’s an upswing in mining activities; France, which is reforming its mining code; and Portugal, a country they say is threatened by the reopening of old mines and the approval of new ones.