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Colombia: Constitutional Court suspends Cerrejon’s permit to divert stream over lack of consultations with local indigenous groups; incl. company statement

Following legal mechanisms used by Wayuu indigenous groups and Afro descendant leaders in La Guajira, the decision by the Constitutional Court rules that until it verifies that FPIC was carried out respecting the fundamental right to prior consent, Cerrejon coal (joint venture BHP Billiton, Glencore and Anglo American) cannot continue its works to deviate the Bruno stream.  Locals allege it will impact their water sources in the most desert zone of the country.

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Article
21 August 2017

“Cerrejón respects the ruling of the constitutional court on the La Puente PIT Project”

Author: Cerrejo coal

August 11 of 2017

The Constitutional Court has decided to postpone the start of mining activity towards the natural course of Bruno Creek for a period of three months. In that time, a ruling will be issued on the application for the protection of constitutional rights (tutela) in which the communities of La Horqueta, Paradero, and Gran Parada are requesting a prior consultation regarding the partial modification engineering works of said creek in association with the expansion of the La Puente Pit…Cerrejón respects the court's decision and we will not work in the mining area towards the natural course until a definitive ruling is issued…We have presented the project and led visits to the site to over 15,000 people, including communities, authorities, employees, contractors, members of NGOs, journalists, and opinion leaders...

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Article
17 May 2016

“Judicial activism, the de facto regulator of Colombian mining”

Author: Global Risk insights

May 17, 2016

The Colombian Constitutional Court recently banned oil, gas, and mining activities in certain areas of high altitude ecosystems known as paramos.  This decision highlights how judicial activism serves as the pivot of the regulatory framework for the mining industry in Colombia…In March, the Colombian high court ruled that stipulations of the “National Development Plan 2014-2018” promoted by the government were unconstitutional, as they would allow environmental damages to favour economic exploitation in legally protected paramos…In 2014, the court suspended licences to operate on indigenous communities’ territory in northern Colombia, and imposed limits on the American company Drummond to prevent environmental damage in the bay of Santa Marta…Analysts anticipate costly legal claims against the Colombian government from foreign mining companies affected by the court’s decision…

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