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The Curse of the Gold: Discourses Surrounding the Project of the Largest Pit-mine in Europe

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In 1996, a Canadian company started geological explorations in the Rosia Montana area in the Romanian Carpathians. Two years later it formed a joint-venture with a Romanian state company to exploit what is believed to be Europe´s largest gold reserves. However, as of June 2011 extraction has not started yet and it may never start due to the opposition of numerous NGO´s that have pointed out the environmental, social and economic unsustainability of this mining project. This situation is highly unusual for a country that is hungry for foreign investment especially since up until very recently the state had supported any project promising to revitalize its mining sector. This paper will investigate the changes in the discourses surrounding this mining project taking into consideration the effects of globalization and the effects of Romania´s EU membership after 2007.

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Issue: Volume 5, Issue 2, 2011