Blog Entry

Meridian Gold's Toxic History in the USA

Jamie Kneen

National Program Co-Lead

Mines owned or run by Meridian Gold have created serious toxic pollution in at least three locations in the United States. One of the largest emitters of atmospheric mercury in the US is the Jerritt Canyon Mine in Nevada, which was part-owned by Meridian until its recent sale. This mine emits more than 10 times the amount of mercury released by a typical US power plant. The tailings facility at Jerritt Canyon has been leaking since it was constructed in the 1980s.

Another Meridian-owned mine, Nevada's Paradise Peak, is marked by a lake with collapsing walls and water that is turning acidic. Notes Dr. Glenn Miller, board member of Great Basin Mine Watch in Nevada, USA, "the decision of the citizens of Esquel is prudent given the unreclaimed environmental damage that Meridian has left behind in Nevada. Meridian should not be permitted to open a mine in Argentina."

One of two pits at Meridian's Beartrack Mine in Salmon, Idaho, is showing signs of acid formation. The runoff from this and the rest of the mine may require extremely expensive, and perpetual, water treatment.