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27/4/ · April 27, pm. MONTALEGRE, Portugal — Lisbon is set to cancel a contentious lithium mining project in the northern Montalegre region, Portugal’s environment minister told . 23/6/ · Lithium mining faces huge resistance in Portugal and Spain Lithium mines are now planned in Spain and Portugal, home to the bloc’s largest reserves. But local resistance is growing. The Mina do Barroso Lithium Project is located in northern Portugal approximately km northeast of the City of Porto and the industrial port of Leixões. Having taken an initial 75% stake in the Project in May , Savannah has subsequently become its sole owner and expanded the Project, adding the adjacent, 3 block, ‘Aldeia’ Mining Lease. The lithium mine near Covas do Barroso in northern Portugal. Locals fear extraction will damage sustainable tourism and organic agriculture businesses in the region © AFP via Getty ImagesEstimated Reading Time: 5 mins.
Armando Pinto, leader of the association, said Thursday that the goal is „to draw attention to what is happening in the county,“ where, in addition to the contract already signed between Lusorecursos Portugal Lithium and the State, for exploration in the parish of Morgade, there are still „eight more requests for prospecting. According to the Ecologist Party Os Verdes, the Directorate of Energy and Geology DGEG confirmed the „intention of the company Lusorecursos Portugal Lithium to make new prospecting work in the area intended for the Romano mine, before the Environmental Impact Assessment EIA , under a provision in the exploration contract“.
He continued: „Most of the parishes are already receiving requests for prospecting. This is worrying“. The protest is scheduled for the town square, from where participants will leave for the fair area, taking the opportunity to hand out leaflets and alert the many expected visitors and emigrants, who are now returning to their homeland, to the consequences of mining.
Residents in the villages of Morgade, Rebordelo and Carvalhais oppose the project, listing concerns about the size of the mine and environmental consequences on health and agriculture. Lusorecursos reported that on January 6th it handed over the Environmental Impact Study EIA to the Portuguese Environment Agency for the lithium mine in Montalegre, which confirms the open mine, up to a depth of about meters, then passing to a tunnel.
Last week, 15 civic movements opposing the prospecting and exploitation of lithium and other minerals launched a national manifesto „vehemently“ repudiating the mining plan that the government intends to develop in nine areas of the country. Interest in Portuguese lithium aroused in , when 30 new requests for prospecting and research on this metal were received, driven by the increase in global demand due to the use of electric car batteries.
Since then, several environmental associations, councils and the population have spoken out against the prospecting and exploitation of lithium, with the government arguing, on the other hand, that this resource is essential for energy transition. Please note that The Portugal News may use selected comments in the printed edition of the newspaper.
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Meawhile, the village of Covas do Barroso is at the centre of another struggle, pitting London-based mining company Savannah Resources against the community. But this has been a process redolent with allegations of corruption and sharp practices click here — and locals suspect this latest development could just be a blind.
Who was responsible for wanting to destroy the beautiful borough of Montalegre and at what cost? Does this mean the PJ judicial police will now stop investigating these possible crimes? This story comes at a moment when government talk about lithium has been subdued to say the least. Whatever the case, focus now is on what exactly is meant to be happening with the Montalegre project — which no-one locally is prepared to accept.
At first sight, nothing really distinguishes this hamlet from the thousands of other villages found across Southern Europe, where a massive rural exodus has resulted in quiet empty streets that are only awakened by the occasional sound of tractors or the voices of elderly residents chatting on benches. But in the mountains surrounding Covas do Barroso lie the largest estimated deposits of lithium in Western Europe.
This rare metal, used for decades in electronics, pharmaceuticals and ceramics, is now intensely sought after because of its unique properties that make it indispensable for the rechargeable batteries found in the booming industry of electric vehicles. It is also an important component of many digital devices and systems that help store the energy produced by renewables, like wind and solar.
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At a public meeting in Covas do Barroso, the parish where it intends to press ahead with an open mine to extract spodumene, the mineral from which lithium is to be removed, the room was filled with permanent local residents and emigrants back for the summer holidays. If all goes well, he said, the company intends to start mining in late To prepare for the mine, the company plans to build an alternative road to reduce the impact on the population from the passage of machinery and trucks, Barros said.
He explained that the ore is to be transported to the port of Leixões, near Porto, from where it will be exported, in the initial phase, to China. UDCB was set up last year precisely to fight against the project and warn of the impacts arising from open-air mining. Gomes told journalists that the main concerns related to the size of the mine and its environmental impacts. He said that it only made sense to have this meeting now, in August, because this is when many emigrants return to their homeland.
Meanwhile, activists and citizens in the centre of the country will be taking part in an unprecedented air action in Seia against lithium exploitation in Portugal. Filmed from the air with drones, this visual message will be broadcast internationally to broaden the voices of those who are against lithium mining and other substances on their doorstep. This will have an impact not only on public health, but also on the local economy, agriculture and tourism, degrading a landscape already affected by forest fires and monocultures.
How can I subscribe to your online publication?? Best regards, Cary Elcome. There are enough open mines in Australia and South America to provide all the evidence of the long term damage and desolation these mines bring to the local environment. And contrary to these countries, with huge territories, where these mines are often situated very far from human life, Portugal’s landmass is totally integrated with is population.
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The EU is trying to set up an independent stream of crucial raw materials to ensure it’s not dependent on third countries. It imports almost all of its lithium — a key ingredient in the batteries used to power electric vehicles. The European Commission estimates that demand for lithium will grow 18 times by and 60 times by That’s set off a race to open mines in Europe, with projects being eyed in Finland, Spain, Serbia, the Czech Republic and Austria, as well as Portugal.
The Montalegre project’s concession license will be „rejected due to a lack of professionalism“ on the part of LusoRecursos, the company awarded a government exploration contract in , Matos Fernandes said. He said the company submitted a „clearly insufficient“ environmental impact study, and added that it won’t be long before „that license is completely canceled. Informed about the scheme’s impending cancellation, an incredulous LusoRecursos CEO Ricardo Pinheiro said his company would bring a „nice lawsuit in the courts.
The minister’s comments signal the end of one of Lisbon’s signature raw material schemes, just one week before the Portuguese presidency of the Council of the EU hosts a conference on green mining. It had been strongly opposed by locals for environmental concerns. The scheme involved leveling a mountainous, hectare site, with parts of the new project located just meters from residents‘ properties.
LusoRecursos claimed that up to 30 million tons of lithium petalite could be extracted from the site and potentially used to make everything from e-vehicle batteries to storage infrastructure for renewable energy. The company’s bid to survey the area was greenlit over a decade ago, but the idea only started to move in , when the government signed a contract giving LusoRecursos exploration rights.
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The Mina do Barroso Lithium Project is located in northern Portugal approximately km northeast of the City of Porto and the industrial port of Leixões. Based on results received to date, Savannah believes Mina do Barroso is the closest European analogue to the successful Australian hard-rock lithium surface mine developments, which produce highly sought-after lithium spodumene concentrates for international markets.
When Savannah acquired its initial interest in the Project in May , there was no mineral resource estimate on the Project. Since that time, the company has completed over 31,m of resource-focused drilling and rapidly delineated a JORC Code compliant resource of 27Mt containing ,t of Li 2 O at an average grade of 1. Drilling to date across the multiple orebodies identified on the Mina do Barroso Project. Many of the orebodies on the Project remain open to further resource expansion in multiple directions, and much of the wider Project area remains relatively underexplored to date.
Hence Savannah believes that there is significant potential for further resource definition. Some of this additional potential is represented by the supplementary Exploration Targets which have been estimated for three of the current five orebodies. Furthermore, it should be noted that despite the increase in the JORC Resource estimate, these Exploration Targets have also increased significantly in tonnage over time to reach a range of Mt as at May While the Exploration Target is conceptual in nature, Savannah believes it gives some indication of the potential lithium inventory that may be defined at the Mina do Barroso Project over the longer term.
In turn, this could support extensions to the life of the Project once production is established. The Scoping Study published in June highlighted the robust economic features and investment appeal of the Mina do Barroso Project. Based on the then resource of c. Based on the positive results of the Scoping Study the decision was taken to complete a Definitive Feasibility Study on the Project which is currently underway.
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Many locals are determined to halt the development, fearing the mine will scar the landscape, pollute water and disrupt the sustainable farming on which the local economy depends. Scores of prospecting licenses are being applied for and an international licensing tender for lithium exploration is due to be launched early this year. The rush for mining rights, however, has sparked anti-lithium demonstrations, petitions, social media campaigns and heated parliamentary debates.
At issue is not only the future of local communities but also a belief among many campaigners that electric vehicles are not the best way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Fifteen requests for lithium prospection in the area were submitted last year. During the past decade, investments in organic farming and small-scale sustainable tourism have helped revive local communities in the rural interior of northern Portugal, a region only just beginning to recover from devastating forest fires in Many residents fear lithium exploration will disrupt this progress.
Archer believes otherwise. Archer estimates that over the year life of the mine, it will eliminate close to million tons of carbon dioxide emissions by reducing the need to ship lithium from China, Australia and Latin America and by supplying a vital material for electric vehicles. He also believes the mine could revitalize a small community in one of the poorest regions of Western Europe.
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14/5/ · This is not a problem affecting Portugal or lithium mining exclusively. Medium and large-scale mines have profound negative impacts for human beings and non-human nature, mostly in the areas nearby mining sites, but also far from them. 3/2/ · Lithium mining rush in Portugal brings environmental worries for local residents. Viseu District in Portugal contains the largest deposits of lithium in Europe. Sold at €25, per ton, this prized commodity is in high demand from a huge number of high tech centrosibp.ested Reading Time: 2 mins.
A creative, uniting and beautiful response to the devastating consequences of open cast mining for Lithium in Portugal. A big street protest against the Lithium mines in Portugal. In addition, there are proposals for fracking for oil and gas which are being disputed by environmentalists in other parts of the country. The Awakened Forest projects runs rewilding trainings, immersive ecoexperiences, tree-plantings etc in the Portuguese countryside.
These extractive industries are environmentally disastrous. Scientific evidence shows that large scale extractive industries such as open cast mining and fracking contaminate the water, deplete groundwater tables and destroy local ecosystems. In order to put this pressing issue of regeneration on the inter national agenda, the group and allied activists gathered to create a large, collective, visual art piece that communicates the message to protect, defend and conserve Nature and all life on the planet, which was shared with a large network of media outlets and NGOs.
We demand from authorities to provide information and transparency about the negative environmental and social impact of these operations, which is currently lacking. The above objectives were achieved when hundreds of people including speakers and campaigners on the highest point in Portugal to make a beautiful art piece together which was filmed and photographed and disseminated throughout Portugal and the world through mainstream, alternative and social media.
The media coverage was unprecedented and all of the objectives for the day were met and exceeded:.