Agosto 1, 2017

#MineríaBienHecha takes over the Plaza de Bolívar in Bogotá

Over 500 people, including Cerrejón employees, contractors, and friends of mining as well as general public actively participated in the Cascos a la Plaza call for assembly by the Colombian Mining Association (ACM), which took place today in the Plaza de Bolívar in Bogotá.

An emotion-filled gathering in the Plaza de Bolívar in Bogotá brought together representatives from different parts of the industry that are committed to undertaking #Mineríabienhecha (responsible mining). Cerrejón participated in this first massive public assembly of people convinced this sector is an opportunity to build co-existence and development in our regions.
Representatives from the mining authorities were also present, including the interim Minister of Mines and Energy, Carlos Andrés Cante, and the president of the ANM, Silvana Habid. The gathering was called by the Colombian Mining Association to raise the visibility of thousands of workers and their families who are direct and indirect beneficiaries of mining. These people are a part of this industry or recipients of its benefits, and they proudly wear the emblem identifying them as miners.
This assembly aims to raise the awareness of those not yet aware of the projects that have positioned Colombia as the fourth-largest country in global coal exports. This industry demands the highest labour and operational standards by the authorities, clients, shareholders, oversight bodies, and the regions of operation. The standing premises are stewardship and preservation of the environment as well as respect for human rights.
Juan Carlos Consuegra, vice president (and acting president) of Cerrejón’s Human Resources and Services, reiterated this commitment, stating, “Formal mining in Colombia, mining that is properly done, legal and responsible, allows the development of public policies, the use of resources, and the generation of favourable dynamics to contribute to the goals to reduce social gaps in Colombia.
This type of mining allows the promotion and implementation of measures that strengthen the harmonious co-existence of these objectives, the application of high international standards, and an understanding of the social, cultural, and environmental realities of every corner where it occurs.” Consuegra added, “In the case of Cerrejón, a company with over 12,000 collaborators, we are proud of the good practices we have followed since the start of our operations. The design of the port infrastructure, for instance, is in accordance with the highest international standards, including a direct-loading system since 1985.
Furthermore, our Land Reclamation Program began over 25 years ago when it was not a legal requirement in Colombia; today, over 3,600 hectares have been reclaimed. We are also proud of our company’s open policy towards all those interested in learning more about our operations.” Cerrejón welcomes more than 14,000 visitors a year, including students, tourists, journalists, and professionals from different fields and with different interests.
In addition to a sizable group of Cerrejón associates, the Cascos a la Plaza event included a performance by the Cerrejón Symphonic Orchestra. This group comprises a total of 80 children and youths from communities neighbouring our operations. These students are part of a beginner’s music program in which nearly 800 children aged 6 to 17 have participated. It began in 2007 with the aim of contributing to the overall development of the children of La Guajira.
Music is a fundamental part of this region’s culture, and this project promotes skills-creation focused on their own traditions. Nicolás Lubbo, a worker at the company and story teller, and Hiraldo Ceferino Suárez, a Cerrejón employee since the 1980s, participated in the activities at the Plaza de Bolívar with professional pride, performing songs and telling stories about responsible mining.
At Cerrejón, we are convinced that mining is a huge opportunity for Colombia’s development as it has the geological potential, the reserves, and the human resources to be a mining country. By using this potential legally and undertaking responsible mining (#MineríaBienHecha), we can create greater contributions and well-being for the country and its individual regions.