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From the executive summary:

The Ortiz Gold mine, proposed by Santa Fe Gold approximately 25 miles south of Santa Fe, New Mexico for a nine year operational life, epitomizes the public risk, private reward nature of modern large scale mining.

Based on the best available information compiled by Santa Fe Gold and previous studies, and by comparing the proposal to a similar deposit mined five miles away, Public Risk, Private Reward: An analysis of the Ortiz Gold Mine proposal reveals that:

  • The mine would be extremely wasteful
  • The mine would consume large amounts of scarce groundwater
  • The mine, and its wastes, could leach acidic water and heavy metals in perpetuity
  • Santa Fe Gold is on very shaky financial ground, to the point where it's very reasonable to question its ability to operate responsibly