Back to Publications

Development Agreements With Community Groups

Juan Carlos Urquidi, Proceedings of 46th Annual Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institute (2000)

This paper is an attempt to outline the legal implications and contractual consequences for mining companies when developing agreements with community groups throughout most of the Latin American countries and particularly focused in Chile. Agreements with community groups may be mandatory whenever there is a legal need to submit a mining project or activity to environmental impact assessment for evaluation and qualification due to the expected magnitude and significance of its environmental impacts.

These agreements might be classified in two different categories, namely, those that pursue the legal protection of fundamental collective valuessuch as elimination of risks to human health, protection of tourist sites, protection of flora and fauna, landscape considerations, archaeological research and findings, and of course the environmental value of certain areas of the national territoryand those [5-3] that are essential to grant full legal protection to third parties' private property and individual patrimony.

Bearing in mind the fact that during the past decade almost all South American nations enacted their own new set of environmental laws and regulations, which in general terms contemplate the right for any community organized group to opine and eventually object and oppose to the construction and start-up of new mining or industrial projects, or even t