Latin America has some of the world’s dirtiest and most dangerous extractive industries, such as mining, logging, and mega-dams. These extractive industries often impact the most on rural and indigenous communities, with severe negative consequences on local livelihoods and community cohesion. There is also a gendered dimension to the impacts of extractivism, with women more affected than men, as they are so often responsible for care-giving in families and communities. Many of these extractive projects are driven by multinational corporations based in the Global North, with much of the material extracted also destined for consumption by Global North populations. Join us for a short course exploring these issues, organised by the Department of Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies at UCC and the Latin America Solidarity Centre.
Join us for a talk with Jakeline Romero Epiayu, an indigenous Wayúu woman and human rights defender from La Guajira, Colombia. The region is home to the Cerrejón mine - Latin America's largest open-cast coal mine, covering 690 square kilometers. It is owned by three of the largest mining companies in the world, and is causing untold environmental and social damages to the region and its people - 35 indigenous communities have been displaced by the mine. Jakeline is a member of local organisation Fuerza de Mujeres Wayúu (Wayúu Women's Force) which works visibilise the violations of human and ethnic rights in La Guajira, and to strengthen the rights of women and indigenous communities in the region. The Coordinator of the Latin America Solidarity Centre, Sian Cowman, will also speak to us about the direct connections between Ireland and the mining taking place in La Guajira.
Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies Department
By Jakeline Romero Epiayu (Member of Wayúu Women's Force, La Guajira, Colombia)