Freshwater Action Network
– grassroots influencing on water and sanitation

Landmark legal decision halts gold mining in Costa Rica

Celebrations outside Costa Rican court after gold mining concession halted

What a great day! After a long and difficult campaign, community groups in Costa Rica today celebrate an environmental victory. They have just won a legal case against gold mining in Costa Rica. Outside I can hear the celebrations as more and more people take to the streets of San Jose this evening to rejoice. The Administrative Court of Costa Rica has overturned the previous governments decision to grant a concession to Infinito Gold Ltd to mine in a protected and vulnerable ecosystem, using mercury & cyanide to blast open the rocks looking for the estimated 1.2 million ounces of gold. 

In a dramatic ruling, the judges of the administrative court have also called for Oscar Arias, the former president of Costa Rica, and recipient of a Nobel Peace Prize to be prosecuted for alleged criminal activities relating to the granting of this concession in 2008.  The judges are sending out a clear signal regarding accountability and rule of law that is very welcome. 

FANCA Costa Rica are involved in this campaign, supporting members, affected community groups, with technical and legal advice and helping coordinate a comprehensive advocacy strategy which worked simultaneously on legal, political and public dimensions to great effect.  I am very pleased to be in San Jose today to share the celebrations.  


Congrats from Greece!

Your victory is an inspiration for all of us that are fighting against gold mining - here in Greece and around the world!!!


Maria Kadoglou


gold mine olympiada

Maria -- I just got word of a permit that is being given to the europeans to mine in Olympiada.  Are you following this story?  Surely the people will not allow this to happen!!!  Do you have any info you can share on this?  Chrysoula 


Congratulations ! this shows the strength of civil society campaign to preserve and protect not only natural resources but also the indigenous knowledge system of community. My heartiest congratulations to FAN and FANCA member organisations for such a grand victory.

Neelkanth Mishra

FANSA GTF coordinator

Great News

What a major victory to get a Court to open closed doors and go back to basics .  It is very surprising that this was achieved and another small building block in the worlds new stance on accountability, bribery,corruption, environmental ignorance and destruction of ecosystems.

Hopefully this sort of result will stimulate many more results like it all over the world. It also gives renewed heart to the groups (often volunteers or charities) that fight to make such things happen.

Sent by   Dr Morley. Barbados.


this is tremendous news! I am celebrating here in Ethiopia with our African partners!


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