Surging prices for raw materials from our earth should bring in much needed revenue which poorer countries can invest in development. But all too often citizens don’t benefit as much as they should from extractive industries like mining and logging. Their governments allow the profits to end up in the pockets of big international companies or a few well off locals. The rush for more raw materials and money often sparks conflicts and sets back development gains.
Caritas members work for economic and social justice by monitoring both governments and companies. Caritas also speaks out against the global structures which trap people in cycles of poverty. We campaign for proper respect and accountability on the part of governments and companies for what happens to people and their natural environment. We work with local communities to provide them with safeguards to their health, water, soil and forests and to make the voice of civil society a strong one.
Caritas updates on extractive industries
Many in Hela believe they will see their traditional way of life gone forever but will not receive their fair share of the profits. Suspicion that others are getting a better deal is rife. People fear corruption or favouritism. Tension is high, optimism low.
Read a report on the issues around unsustainable mining in Colombia prepared by ABColombia, an advocacy group which includes Caritas member organisations Sciaf, Trócaire and Cafod.
Our very own Fr. Edwin Gariguez, executive secretary of the National Secretariat for Social Action-Justice and Peace (NASSA is Caritas Philippines) and a prominent activist against mining in his country, has been awarded the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize.