By electronic mail (staff please pass to addressees)
Executive Vice President
Dear Mr Reynolds,
Dear Mr Stock,
Some 5 years ago the environmentally unfriendly activities of foreign mining
companies in Slovakia was challenged by conservationists in Slovakia and worldwide and operations in the planned Slovak Karst
National Park were called off.
It has come to our attention that your company is planning mining operations
for gold and uranium in Slovakia. This small country is fortunate to still have large tracts of intact countryside which provide
breeding habitat to several important and endangered species. These include birds such as the Eastern Imperial Eagle, Lesser
Spotted Eagle, and Ural Owl. Other species threatened include the Black Stork, Black, Three-toed and White-backed Woodpeckers,
Capercaillie, Pygmy Owl, Hazel Grouse and other species of community concern according to European Union Specially Protected
Area (SPA) criteria. Your planned gold and uranium extraction will be detrimental
to some of these areas, and other important habitats of endangered flora and fauna, and are likely to infringe Slovak and
European Union legislation.
The lobby to have revised legislation passed which will enable mining operations
to ride roughshod over conservation, nature protection and local recreational requirements is not in the long-term interests
of the country and its population. All forms of short term economic gains, most of which will not benefit the country itself,
cannot be permitted to be made at the expense of the preservation of common European natural resources. For this reason we
are supporting the efforts of Slovak non-governmental organisations to prevent the law being passed as presently drafted.
We will also call the attention of the European Commission to planned mining activities to ensure that these are monitored
and that infringements against European legislation, in particular the Birds and Habitat Directives (79/409/EEC and 92/43/EEC),
On your website you state: "Local and regional governments have been supportive
of the project." Our information from the affected regions indicate the opposite. The Ministry of the Environment, and
the city councils of Kosice and Kremnica, are opposed to the proposed mining operations
because of the consequent loss of public recreational activities and serious habitat degradation for flora and fauna.
It is noticeable that you make no mention of environmental impact on your website; a sad and significant omission in this
day and age.
We urge you to respect European and Slovak environmental legislation and take
heed of conservation concerns for important endangered bird species.
We will also be expressing our concern to the respective Slovak ministries
and the European Commission.
(Name and address)