MEDIA RELEASE 28/03/2018
The environmental group Coromandel Watchdog of Hauraki today expressed concern and disappointment at the announcement by Oceana Gold that they are applying for a consent to keep mining under the town and homes of Waihi.
“This latest proposal from Oceana Gold is light on detail, but sounds like another ten years of blasting and vibration under the town which will increase the risks of further potential subsidence in the Martha pit. They want to mine underneath the pit and under yet more homes in the Eastern Waihi, despite the impact on homes, and on property values – not to mention the impacts on the people living in these homes” said Coromandel Watchdog spokesperson Augusta Macassey-Pickard.
Mrs Macassey-Pickard said that people living in Waihi have been watching the Martha Pit, which was supposed to have become a recreational lake, crumbling despite assurances that that would not happen.
“Now Oceana are planning to mine under the pit and will no doubt be telling the community that there are no risks; Watchdog is very concerned about this – there are a range of risks that Oceana are aware of, many of these were raised during the initial consent to mine under homes. Other than the obvious environmental impacts, Watchdog is greatly concerned about the social impact of this proposal – particularly the impact on mental health of those whose homes will be in the mine zone. The Mayor of Hauraki (and Oceana themselves) only talk about unsustainable mining jobs, but what about all the other people trapped in this town, as mining extends further and further underneath their homes? The uncertainty about subsidence and blast effects can be as damaging as the effects themselves, and there is a lot more than just Oceana in the Town.”