Nature Review of Blood of Extraction

Blood of Extraction
Canadian Imperialism in Latin America

By Todd Gordon and Jeffery R. Webber  

Despite its honed reputation as an ethical global actor, Canada has a dirty secret. It is the corporate home to two-thirds of the world’s mining companies, part of a rapacious industry with an abominable environmental and human-rights record. Mining consumes vast quantities of water, contaminating watersheds and land with acids and heavy metals. Yet Canadian foreign policy champions the extractive industry, notably in Latin America, as this piercing indictment shows.

Indigenous communities and environmental activists across the region have resisted — even routing some projects — but face extreme brutality. Since 2009 alone, dozens of activists protesting against Canadian mining have been killed by police, paramilitary forces and private security firms, part of an ongoing slaughter (see go.nature.com/2vtbjf7). The authors mined thousands of Access to Information pages, exposing how Canada has effectively abetted this nexus of violence and official collusion.

This eye-opening volume should pressure Canada to clean up its lax securities laws and imperialistic foreign policy — and push us all to rethink the unspeakable price of mineral extraction.

— Nature 548, 28–30 (03 August 2017)

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