Africa

Shinkolobwe in DR Congo

This mine was officially closed in 2004, because the horrible work conditions caused a tunnel to collapse and bury several miners to their deaths. But this was not the end of a long, sad story. To this day, illicit mining continues in Shinkolobwe. The iranian government tried to smuggle Uranium from here. The environmental situation is also pretty bad, with unprotected tailings and contaminated drinking water.

Golden Misabiko, president of the NGO ASADHO/Katanga, was put in jail in 2009 for releasing a report on the illicit mining activities in the area. He is free again, but the problem he went through hell for remains.

Unauthorized mining continues at the former Shinkolobwe uranium mine: artisanal miners are getting access to the mine site by bribing the guards. While the miners are after copper and cobalt, some ores also contain considerable concentrations of uranium. The product is exported in the form of copper and cobalt concentrates that still contain the uranium. The uranium can then easily be extracted in the unknown destination countries.

 

 

News & Activities on Shinkolobwe

Uranium Conference Tanzania 2013

Tanzania ConferenceFrom October 1 - October 6 2013, experts from around the world gathered in Dar Es Salaam and Bahi to inform the public on the dangers of Uranium Mining. The conference was organized by IPPNW, Uranium Network, LHRC, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, NaCUM and CESOPE.

 

Download conference program

The Uranium Info Brochure by the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung (contains articles by many of the conference participants)

 

News & Activities on the Tanzania conference

Kanyika Niobium Project

The Kanyika mine is a large niobium mine located in northern Malawi in the Northern Region. Kanyika represents one of the largest niobium reserves in Malawi having estimated reserves of 60 million tonnes of ore grading 0.29% niobium metal. [Wikipedia]

The mine is run by Globe Metals, plans to start operation in 2014 await the clearing of a bulk sample test in China, which should be completed in June 2014.

News & Activities on Kanyika Niobium Project

Arlit & Akokan in Niger

MineArlit1Arlit is a mining town in northern-central Niger. Akokan is a mining town in the Arlit Department. The Tuareg and Toubou people are local to the area.

Two large open pit mines and one underground mine are being operated here. For around thirty years, two mining companies have been extracting uranium deposits in the region of Arlit.

SOMAIR (Société des Mines de l'AIR), owned by AREVA-COGEMA (63%) and the state of Niger.

COMINAK (Compagnie Minière d'Akouta), run by AREVA-COGEMA (34%), the Nigerien state, and Japanese (OURD) and Spanish (ENUSA) companies.

The cities of Arlit and Akokan (total inhabitants 70.000 people!), have been created from nothing - on the face of a plain desert - to inhabit the mines workers. The drinking water is extracted from the ground by the mining companies. That is the same ground being polluted by the mines tailings.

 

News & Activities on Arlit

The Falea Mine Project in Mali

 Falea02Find a detailed description of Faleas problems and what you can do about them at falea21.free.fr!

 

 

 

 

 


News & Activities on the Falea Project

Dominion Reefs in South Africa

Dominionville03Occupying an area of approximately 14 000 hectares in the Witswatersand Basin of South Africa, Uranium One's Dominion Reefs site includes a shallow underground mine, a uranium processing operation and open pits where exploratory blasting is taking place.

Workers at Dominion Reefs have consistently raised their concerns about the poor health and safety conditions in the mine, unfair and discriminatory treatment and substandard wages.

In 2008, this mine was placed into care and maintenance by Uranium One, linked to the worldwide decline of uranium prices. In 2011, Shiva Uranium Ltd. announced that they would resume production "soon".

 

Valencia Mine in Namibia

Forsys Metals Corporation has laid off most of the workers at its Valencia Uranium Project in the Erongo Region with reports reaching The Namibian indicating that the company is now left with only four workers and seven managers. Like other uranium mines and projects in the country, the project has been negatively affected by the downturn in the international uranium markets after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan in March 2011 sent uranium prices tumbling down.


Valencia general manager Dag Kullmann said in an interview that at full capacity, the project had 30 workers but said since it has completed its exploration activities, it had decided to retain nine skilled workers including managers. He further said when funding becomes available, more exploration activities will be conducted and the development of the mine will only possibly take place when market conditions improve.

 

News & Activities on Valencia Mine

The Mkuju River Project at The Selous Game Reserve

Selous MkujuThe Selous Game Reserve, covering 50,000 square kilometres, is amongst the largest protected areas in Africa and is relatively undisturbed by human impact.

In 2012, the World Heritage Committee accepted a boundary change of the Selous Game Reserve to allow for uranium exploitation exactly south of the World Heritage Site, in the area of the Selous-Niassa-Wildlife Corridor.

On its June 2014 session, the World Heritage Committee ("WHC") put the Selous Game Reserve on the list of endangered World Heritage sites. We had reported repeatedly about the conflict uranium exploration and plans for uranium mining as well as other exploration activities in the area have caused.

 

Further background information

 

News & Activities on The Mkuju River Project

Trekkopje in Namibia

Trekkopje is a settlement in Namibia, 45 kilometres north-east of Swakopmund on the road to Usakos. The mining project in this region is currently on hold. Rumours already started in October that Areva planned to abandon the Trekkopje uranium mine project as part of a massive restructuring program that is to be set up in reaction to a drop in demand caused by the German nuclear phase-out and the Fukushima disaster.

 

News & Activities on Trekkopje

Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine

From the Öko-Institut-Report 2005: The company Langer Heinrich Uranium (Pty) Ltd. has, in 2004, proposed to establish and operate a uranium mine in the Namib desert, about 80 km East of the City of Swakopmund in Namibia and within the Namib-Naukluft National Park. Uranium mining and milling as well as the associated wastes from these processes cause several environmental impacts.

As part of the permitting process, LangerHeinrich Uranium (Pty) Ltd. has commissioned the company Softchem of South Africa to prepare an environmental assessm ent report for the planned project. The draft report was issued, written comments were received and the public participation meetings were held in October 2004. The final environmental assessment report was then issued in April 2005 [Softchem 2005]. According to the owner company Paladin Resources Ltd.1, in July 2005 the mining license for the Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine was granted by the Ministry of Mines and Energy.

 

News & Activities on Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine

Bahi region in Tanzania (Manyoni Project)

BahiSenke

Circa 50 km west of Tanzanian capital Dodoma, the Bahi village is surrounded by a flat lowland area. Water is led into this enclosed basin on- and off-surface through foothills of the East African Rift System.

Inhabitants count up to ten smaller and eight larger bodies of water leading into the basin during rain season. This leads to large-scale floods in the area. A lake occasionally forms at the basins center and stays for several years. After the water ebbs away, salt pans remain.

 

News & activities on the Bahi region

Rössing Uranium Mine in Namibia

The Rössing Uranium Mine is located in Namibia, ca. 60 kilometers inland from Swakopmund, in the mountain range near the River Khan. It has been a cause for environmental, human rights and health concerns for more than 30 years through unsafe working conditions, radioactive effluent and tailings. In the near vicinity is the village Arandis, where the workers and their families live.

 

News & Activities on Rössing Uranium Mine

Imouraren in Niger

This deposit has been discovered in 1966 by members of the French center for nuclear energy, Commissariat à l'énergie atomique. The development of Imouraren was pushed forward by a consortium of the CEA, the Office Nation des Ressources Minières (later SOPAMIN) and US-firm Conoco. Due to sinking Uranium prices, the project was let down in the 1980ies.

In 2006, French Uranium Group AREVA has continued the exploitation of the land, and has founded the Imouraren S.A. in 2009 with an investment sum of more than 1,9 billion Euro. Production begin is set for 2015.

 

News & Activities on Imouraren