At the open-pit gold mine Essakane, located in the province of Oudalan in the north-east and owned by Canadian firm International African Mining Gold Corporation, a strike was organised by the trade union Syndicat National des Travailleurs des Mines et Carrières du Burkina from December 13–16, 2011. Moreover, mining areas rank among the poorest in the country and the cost of living in these mining locations is significantly higher than in other rural areas. Sankara articulated this point succinctly, when he told the first International SILVA Conference for the Protection of the Trees and Forests in Paris: “We are not against progress, but we do not want progress that is anarchic and criminally neglects the rights of others.”. In Burkina Faso, subsistence agriculture based on cereal growing (sorghum, millet, maize and rice) is the predominant regional activity, employing 80% of the population. The courageously protesters said: “While the ministers in charge of the mines are happy to dine with the mining bosses, they never have as much as 30 minutes to talk to the local people. At the open-pit gold mine Essakane, located in the province of Oudalan in the north-east and owned by Canadian firm International African Mining Gold Corporation, a strike was organised by the trade union Syndicat National des Travailleurs des Mines et Carrières du Burkina from December 13–16, 2011. At the Tarpako mine, operated by Canadian company High River Gold, the establishment of extractivism meant the expropriation of peasant land; destruction of traditional gold mining, the main activity of the villagers; the emergence of a water crisis; rise in the cost of living; and intense monitoring by private security guards. On top of this, an eco-socialist economy would also reconstitute the transnational regime of capital accumulation. Mining greatly accelerated in 2018 when exploration and exploitation permits for industrial mining were issued for almost half of the surface of the country. 4PM ACT, NSW, TAS & VIC Yanis Iqbal is a student and freelance writer based in Aligarh, India and can be contacted at [email protected] Four young demonstrators died on the spot and a fifth on the way to the hospital. In Burkina Faso, an eco-socialist struggle needs to be waged against the “anarchic” growth of capitalism that is decimating the entire country in pursuit of profit. Our side is — and always will be — that of the 99%. Furthermore, mining companies and artisanal miners use water resources unsustainably for the production of gold. In 2010, the revenue from gold exploitation represented 63.8% of total export revenues and 7.7% of GDP. To build an alternative to contemporary mining practices, an eco-socialist approach needs to be adopted, whereby strong environmental controls can be implemented and ecological damage prevented. We no longer have access to all that nature had given us.”. Through state regulation, the entry of private capital was greatly hindered. During 2007–14, Burkina Faso experienced a gold rush and jumped from sixteenth- to fourth-largest gold producer on the African continent. In response, the traditional gold miners, deprived of their livelihood, organised themselves in an association called Nabons-Wende to defend their interests. “The mine lacks respect for our village, when arresting and imprisoning our youth.”. Furthermore, in 2012, earnings from the exploitation of gold rose substantially from CFA440 billion to CFA806 billion. Featuring Bunurong man Bruce Pascoe, award-winning Australian writer and editor, author of Dark Emu: Black Seeds: Agriculture or Accident? In place of corporatocracies, an eco-socialist approach would support the democratic ownership of resources and the elimination of the profit-maximising objective. Agro-Extractivism: The Agrarian Question of the 21st Century. ], IN CONVERSATION WITH BRUCE PASCOE: The Climate Emergency & Indigenous Land Practice, SATURDAY 5 DECEMBER ♦ 4PM ACT, NSW, TAS & VIC ♦ 3:30PM SA ♦ 3PM Qld ♦ 2:30PM NT ♦ 1PM WA. (Optional) Enter your postcode for local activist event updates. Correspondingly, farming is the most affected by mining activities, reducing food production and increasing food insecurity. In response, the company hired security guards who forcefully seized the artisanal miners’ extracted stone; physically assaulted people to check if they were carrying gold; and intimidated the artisanal miners to sell the gold they had extracted to SOMIKA below the market price. While talking about people displaced by extractivist operations, one NGO stated: “Their fields have been taken away. While extractive imperialism is negatively impacting Burkina Faso, artisanal mining also has its drawbacks.