No mining taking place in agreed Cockpit Country 'boundary', says Government
The Government is seeking to assure the public that no mining activity is taking place within the proposed protected area of the environmentally sensitive Cockpit Country.
Multiple boundaries have been proposed for the vast protected area and last year Mining Minister Phillip Paulwell reiterated that mining will not be permitted until official borders are determined.
However, yesterday, lobby group, Jamaica Environment Trust (JET) claimed that bauxite company, Noranda, has been deploying equipment and building roads to haul material within the Bryan Castle area, near Stewart Town in Trelawny.
However, State Minister in the Mining Ministry, Julian Robinson says his checks have revealed no mining activities are taking place within boundaries agreed between the government and Noranda.
Meanwhile, he says a meeting is to be held today between the ministry of Land, Water, Environment and Climate Change, and the Mining Ministry to kick-start a process to resolve the boundary issue.
For almost a decade a process has been underway to have the boundaries of the protected Cockpit Country determined.
The Cockpit Country Stakeholders Group has proposed a border that includes the area in Trelawny where Noranda is now carrying out activities.
The Cockpit Country is the source of 40 per cent of Jamaica's freshwater and home to many endemic species.