Scouring the globe, Australian corporations and investors are expanding into new territories, both domestically and internationally, for new sources of “critical and strategic” minerals for the “green energy transition” to a zero carbon world. These minerals include lithium, copper, nickel, rare earth, and cobalt.
The Panguna mine in Bougainville that operated from 1971 to 1989 left a decade of civil war in its entrails, environmental destruction and social upheaval.
As a part of a mega energy-infrastructure project, a large-scale open pit copper mine has been proposed by Pan Aust, a Chinese owned company listed in Australia, on a culturally and ecologically significant river region in Sepik in Papua New Guinea.
Australian-Canadian OceanaGold has received international attention for grave human rights and environmental concerns throughout the life its Dipidio copper-gold mine.
Since 2016, around seven million hectares of land in Ecuador has been sold by the government, under zero public scrutiny, to international mining companies keen to take advantage of the country’s promise of untapped reserves of copper and other base metals.