Monday, October 18, 2021


Gold and silver prospecting licence places Leitrim ‘below siege’

Group leaders in Co Leitrim say they really feel “below siege” after studying that the Minister for the Setting, Local…

By Staff , in Silver , at October 18, 2021


Group leaders in Co Leitrim say they really feel “below siege” after studying that the Minister for the Setting, Local weather and Communications Eamon Ryan intends to grant a prospecting licence for gold and silver in a part of the county which had beforehand been focused for fracking.

Jamie Murphy, chairman of foyer group Love Leitrim, mentioned many locals who had been concerned in a profitable six-year marketing campaign to ban fracking had been unaware that they had been now going through a risk “from one other carbon-heavy extractive business” .

The Minister not too long ago printed discover of his intention to grant a prospecting licence to Omagh-based firm Flintridge Sources for 47 named townlands in two separate areas, near Manorhamilton. In response to the division, objections might be submitted as much as November sixth.

Members of Love Leitrim say the timeframe is just too quick given the problem of informing and mobilising folks throughout a pandemic.

Leitrim farmer Eddie Mitchell, who was additionally concerned within the marketing campaign in opposition to fracking, a technique of shale fuel extraction, mentioned it was “barely plausible that the Authorities would attempt to impose one other heavy extractive business into north Leitrim with out correctly informing the general public”.

Political determination

A discover printed not too long ago within the Leitrim Observer newspaper suggested that the general public had 30 days to submit objections to the Geoscience Regulation Workplace (GSRO). Mr Mitchell mentioned he was not reassured by a declaration within the discover {that a} prospecting licence permits the holder to probe for mineral deposits however to not mine, and that any permitted exercise can be “non-invasive” and have “minimal environmental influence”.


A choice to grant a prospecting licence was a key political determination, he mentioned.

“A mineral prospecting licence is the choice that underlines all future authorisations. It’s the tip of political oversight and the start of regulation, as soon as that call is made. It confirms extraction rights on licence holders over no matter minerals are discovered. That is what mining firms use as the premise to get funding.”

He mentioned that whereas many individuals had been solely studying concerning the Minister’s intention “no one will enable gold mining in Leitrim and not using a battle. We should always be capable to count on extra from Eamon Ryan.”

Mr Murphy mentioned it made no sense for the Authorities to difficulty a prospecting licence “in the midst of a local weather and biodiversity emergency”.

“This can be a very worrying time for the neighborhood for a lot of causes,” he mentioned. “The mining course of could be very carbon-heavy and never appropriate with constructing a sustainable future or with efforts to be carbon-neutral.”

‘Cease this business’

Urging folks in Leitrim to contact politicians to stipulate their fears, Mr Murphy mentioned: “We do have a window of alternative to cease this business from gaining a foothold. Our name to the Minister and the Authorities is to not difficulty this licence.” He mentioned there have been actual fears concerning the influence of mining on the panorama and on water provides and air.

A spokesman for the Division of Setting, Local weather and Communications mentioned a prospecting licence didn’t confer any proper to mine.

“Mining requires extra licences and permissions together with planning permission from the related Native Authority and an Built-in Air pollution Management Licence from the Environmental Safety Company, ” he mentioned. “Each of those permissions present for public session.”

The spokesman mentioned that, over the previous 70 years, the division had issued many 1000’s of prospecting licences “of which solely a small quantity have in the end led to mining operations”.

The division mentioned that Flintridge Sources sought to probe for gold, silver and base metals inside north Co Leitrim in an space the place its sister firm, Omagh Minerals Ltd, had beforehand held licences from March 2014 to October 2020. The division mentioned it was unaware of any complaints from the general public in respect of Omagh Minerals’ actions .

A employees member at Flintridge Sources in Omagh referred all media queries to Mario Stifano, the chief government of its father or mother firm Galantas Gold in Toronto. It had not responded to a request for remark at time of publication.



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