Prospecting licenses were yesterday granted by the Minister for the Environment to an Australian company to explore the potential for the mining of base metals, gold, silver and platinum across a wide area of East Mayo.
The Mayo Environmental Group, that successfully put a halt to gold mining on Croagh Patrick and in the Doolough Valley back in the late 80s/ early 90s, is concerned and shocked at this development, and are urging the communities around the Charlestown area to immediately react to the news that Oriel Selection Trust Ltd has secured prospecting licenses in their area.
Sean O’Malley is the Secretary of the Mayo Environmental Group, that more than three decades ago went to the Supreme Court to stop the blight of the gold mining process on areas of West Mayo, and he says that it amazes him that Minister Eamon Ryan who almost brought down the government recently over the sale and supply of turf, has now granted prospecting licenses to a company to determine the commercial potential of mining for gold or silver on a wide stretch of land across east Mayo.
The prospecting licenses for East Mayo were advertised on local papers in recent months, and Mr O’Malley, as the secretary to the Mayo Environmental Group, wrote to the Minister about the group’s concerns, but that was the single submission received on the matter.
This lunchtime Sean has been telling Midwest News Editor Teresa O’Malley more about what yesterday’s decision to grant prospecting licenses in East Mayo may mean to the local environment and landscape...
Maps and townland lists are available at https: www.gov.ie /en/publication/507ce-prospecting-licence -notices