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9/14/15

What we now know about the Barrick (ABX) spill at Veladero on Sunday is that...

...some 15,000 litres of water containing cyanide (Barrick's cute terminology was "cyanided solution") was spilled when one of its conduit pipelines ruptured. What's up for debate is where that cyanide went after it suddenly and unexpectedly left its intended pipe.

The locals swear blind the water reached and entered the local river, then on to the water supply. Their information sources are workers at the mine who daren't go on the record else get fired immediately, but they're on WhatsApp and Twitter telling people the reality. Sales of bottled water have rocketed in Jáchal. These are the same locals who were kept in the dark all day yesterday and only has their rumours confirmed late Sunday night after staging a demonstration outside the local municipality demanding answers.

The management at Barrick swear blind (in the press release they only bothered publishing in the Veladero region, no point in doing it in English for the world right guys?) that although the spill did happen, it was contained on site and not a drop of "cyanided solution" reached the local river.

This is of course the same company that swore blind for years on end it wasn't affecting any of the glaciers at Pascua Lama just a few clicks up the road form Veladero. Right up to the moment the Environmental Agencies closed the project down for doing just that. Bless 'em.