Peruvian Environment Ministry to Evaluate Mining Projects

Peru’s Environment Ministry will help ease anti-mining protests by evaluating environmental impact studies for new projects to give them more legitimacy, President Ollanta Humala said.

Peru’s economy will expand 6 percent this year even amid social conflicts, Humala said today at a press conference in Lima. Project reviews were previously carried out by the Energy & Mines Ministry.

“This is something new and important because environmental policy is a main concern of this government,” Humala said. “This will provide greater credibility and legitimacy for environmental impact studies.”

Peru’s mining industry, the world’s third-largest copper and zinc producer, will invest $4 billion next year, 33 percent less than previously expected, as social unrest delays projects, according to the country’s National Society of Mining, Petroleum & Energy. Companies including Newmont Mining Corp., Southern Copper Corp., Zijin Mining Group Co. Ltd. and Bear Creek Mining Corp. postponed projects over the past year following environmental protests.