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Kumtor: another view

Written by on Friday, 22 March 2013
Kyrgyzstan, Photoblog

Editor’s note: Photos by Begimai Sataeva

Recently, a surprising place in nature Kumtor media coverage only from a negative point of view. From a political point of view about this place says a lot. If you look at it from the point of view of a tourist open completely different species.

In the south-eastern Kyrgyzstan, on the heights of the Tien Shan, near the glacier is a unique gold mine – Kumtor. On arrival at the Kumtor not accustomed to hard for people to breathe, stay accompanied by constant dizziness, because Kumtor is located at over 4000 meters above sea level. All year round field sweeps snow. Round, every day, you can see flocks ranging over argali. Hungry wolves often eat at the office of Kumtor. Depth of the wells and the extent technology is enormous.

This can be seen in the following pictures:

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  • At much lower geographical level, and a little closer to ground level, are the giant tractors used by oil companies to shave off the top layer of soil and tar sands in Canada; these huge beasts of machines strip-mine for tar sand a large region of Alberta. (The tar sands operation in Canada is said to be the territorial size of Florida, USA.) After the tar sands are processed, using much electrical energy and hot water, designed to separate the oil from the sand, the oil is pumped to the US market (for cars, transport, etc). I recommend viewing of the documentary film ‘Dirty Oil’ (2010) directed by Leslie Iwerks to see these giant tractors in operation and for a greater understanding about the impact of strip-mining in general upon indigenous communities and the natural environment.


    Schwartz Reply:

    Thanks for the film recommendation! Personally, I find this issue more and more intriguing. Are you familiar with the Bankwatch report (as well as the rejoinders against it)?


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