Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill has said she shares the concerns of residents opposed to a goldmine in the Sperrins.
Mrs O’Neill met with the community of Greencastle last Thursday [Feb 18] to talk about the mine.
Following that meeting, she said she too is worried about the “potential negative impact” a gold processing plant could have on farmers, rural dwellers and also the environment.
Minister O’Neill said: “The community of Greencastle have been raising their concerns about plans by Dalradian Gold with my party colleague Declan McAleer MLA and I am pleased to have met with residents today to discuss those concerns further.
“Dalradian Gold began underground exploration for gold in County Tyrone in 2014 and has now outlined their intention to locate a mine and processing plant within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty just outside Greencastle.
“The Company has confirmed that it intends to use cyanide at its processing plant to separate the gold from ore. As Minister of Agriculture I share the concerns of local residents regarding the potential negative impact that this process will have on farmers, rural dwellers and our environment.”
Dalradian Gold - the company behind the mine - said its use of cyanide would be subject to environmental laws.
It also said it is currently undertaking a local consultation to gauge local opinion on the mine and address any concerns.