Canadian mining kills, but at the planet’s largest mining conference in Toronto this weekend, the industry will spin fantastical tales for investors that ignore the suffering of the communities bearing the brunt of its “successes.”
It’s been called the Superbowl or the Oscars of the resource extraction industry. And between workshops, cultural performances, the annual awards ceremonies, prime ministerial visits and the trade show – 2016’s convention even had a shoe-shining station! – it seems like an exciting place to be.
The Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) convention, the largest mining and mineral industry conference and trade show in the world, happens every year in Toronto. This year’s 85th annual event takes place March 5 to 8 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, with some 25,000 people from more than 125 countries attending.
Promoters say the convention injects about $60 million annually into the Toronto economy. Tourism Toronto is a “Gold Plus” sponsor, alongside CIBC. “Platinum” sponsors Barrick Gold and Goldcorp, two of the industry’s biggest players, also happen to share a bad reputation for human rights violations and environmental damage abroad.
But the largely fantastical world of the PDAC convention exists far away from the reality of the communities bearing the brunt of these mining “successes.”
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