Monday, November 30, 2009

A message for the people of Canada: Support “Bill C-300” and let us live our lives in health and peace!

A message for the people of Canada: Support “Bill C-300” and let us live our lives in health and peace!

By Sergio U. Dani, from Göttingen, Germany, November 30, 2009

If you are a Canadian woman or man, you should know that 2 out of 3 extractive companies operating in the world are based in Canada. The reason for this astonishing concentration of mining, oil and gas companies in Canada can be hinted at in a recent report released by three Canadian gold mining companies [1]: “the international competitiveness of Canadian mining companies working in developing countries in a manner unique to Canada”.

Indeed, many Canadian companies receive taxpayer dollars of Canadian governmental investment. They also receive political and diplomatic support from the Canadian government to operate around the world, and they pretend to operate legally. Truth is, many of these companies operate massive environmental damages, displacement of local people from their homes as well as rapes and even murder. Did you know all that? Have you ever allowed your government and Canadian companies to operate like this, financed by the taxes you pay?

I must tell you that Canadian gold mining corporations manage to thrive and to operate illegally in developing countries by making "facilitation payments" that favor local governments while hurting human rights, people's health and the environment [2]. An illustrative example of such practices is provided by Kinross Gold Corporation, which facilitates corruption and sets the stage for a true genocide in Paracatu, Brazil, whereas pretending to be legal [3,4]. Kinross claims that it operates under strictly legal terms in Brazil. This is overtly not true, and Kinross has been sued in several civil actions proposed by the Brazilian State and Federal Public Ministries, the Acangau Foundation and private persons, too. Robbing and polluting drinking water, polluting soils and the atmosphere, expelling native people from their legally protected territories, hiding or manipulating information and killing people is simply against the Brazilian law. It is also immoral, inhumane and bad for mankind. Thus it is also bad for you, my Canadian brother or sister.

Whereas some of the liabilities for these crimes and errors are left for taxpayers to pay again, some are left for humankind to pay forever. An imperceptible though dangerous toxin called arsenic is being released to the biosphere by mining operations, particularly gold mining operations. Gold mines pose the highest concerns worldwide because arsenic is most abundant in gold ores.

I have recently authored a study in the journal Medical Hypotheses in which I review the hazards of arsenic release from gold mines worldwide, including Kinross' Paracatu gold mine [5]. This study has won immediate media coverage [6,7]. I have estimated that thousands of gold mines worldwide have the potential to release 10-100 kg of arsenic per each human being presently living on planet Earth. Whereas 100 milligrams of arsenic suffice to acutely kill an adult man, much lesser amounts – in the part per billion range – are enough to chronically kill or cause serious health and economical distresses to billions of people, eroding family and country economies worldwide.

There is vast scientific evidence that arsenic released by human activities is mobilized in many environmental compartments in the course of years, centuries and millennia. Chronic exposure to environmental arsenic has been implicated as a cause or predisposing factor for each of the top ten causes of death in the world, including vascular diseases, various forms of cancer, diabetes and immunological diseases. Unfortunately, environmental remediation of arsenic is economically unfeasible.

Therefore, some mining operations are worse than crimes, they are huge errors that must be avoided because they are bad for all of us. This is why you Canadian should support Bill C-300 and legislation of the same kind. Let us live our lives in health and peace!

References and notes:

[1] Barrick Gold Corporation, Kinross Gold Corporation and Goldcorp Inc. (2009) Submission to the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development. Bill C-300. An Act respecting Corporate Accountability for the Activities of Mining, Oil or Gas in Developing Countries. Retrieved from, November 28, 2009.

[2] Dani SU. How can Canadian companies operate illegal mining worldwide? Accessible at:

[3] Dani SU. Kinross Gold Corporation: a history of bad management, facilitated corruption and mass murder. Accessible at

[4] Dani SU. Canadian Kinross Gold Corporation operates corruption plots and a true genocide in Brazil Accessible at

[5] Dani SU. Gold, coal and oil. Medical Hypotheses doi:10.1016/j.mehy.2009.09.047



Related material:

. A short documentary film on Canadian MP John McKay's Private Member's Bill C-300 and some of the MPs who support it. Accessible at:

. Full text of Bill C-300 available at:

. Lawsuit exposes Canada’s toxic tailings secret: Groups say feds flouting law, hiding mining pollution from public. Accessible at:

. Mining Day on the Hill - What you should know about mining and Canadian mining companies. Accessible at:

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