RMGC puts USD 70 million to support Rosia Montana archeological reconditioning, NGO slams effort

Newsroom 21/07/2011 | 14:11

The county direction for Culture and National Patrimony Alba has recently issued a certificate allowing for archeological discharge for a portion of Carnic mountain. This measure was taken after the National Archeological Commission approved the preventive report “Carnic Mountain, Rosia Montana, Romania – mining project Rosia Montana,” a necessary step towards initiating the mining project.  According to an agreement between Rosia Montana Gold Corporation RMCG and the Culture Ministry, the archeological sites in the area need to be secured before mining explorations begin. Kelemen Hunor, the minister of Culture and National Patrimony, brokered the action plan that includes revamping 41 historic monument buildings in the protected area, the revitalization of the historic center, the reconditioning of roman mining galleries and archeological research projects for 100 km work of mining galleries. This project is going to be financially supported by Rosia Montana Gold Corporation with USD 70 million, and supervised by a panel of experts who are going to monitor the process.

 

The non-profit organizations have opposing stances on this project

The independent group for monitoring the cultural patrimony of Rosia Montana(GIMPCRM) claims to be an independent body whose soles objective is to assess the cultural, archeological, historic and ethnological patrimony of Rosia Montana area. RMGC is offering the group logistic support.

This group published a statement shortly after the archeological exploitation permit was issued that praised Kelem Hunor’s plan to secure a large sum of money for maintaining the cultural footprint of Rosia Montana and slammed the opposing actors for making unfeasible discourses and plans. Consequently, this supervisory body of senior academic fellows considers that mining is the way only sustainable way to develop Rosia Montana.

ProRosia Montana, another NGO whose members want to see the mines reopen, greeted Kelem Hunor’s decision to ask RMGC USD 70 million for cultural patrimony conservation and noted that only financial gains from mining activities can ensure further architectural preservation.  Although this NGO has only 475 subscription members and 1700 upholders, they are trying to make their voice heard.

On the opposing side, Alburnus Maior, an NGO whose members refused relocation incentives from RMCG are angrily asking Kelem Hunor to step down, calling him a RMCG cheerleader. In response, they organized “Hunoriada”, a series of protests held in Bucharest and Cluj, demanding the minister’s resignation. This NGO argues that the exploitation of Carnic Mountain will lead to its removal from the Class A List of Historic Monuments designed by the National Institute for Historical Monuments, allowing mining activities to commence.

 

Ovidiu Posirca

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