Mining Policy and Subnational Tensions: A New Stage in The Cycle of Environmental Conflict in Twenty-First Century Argentina

Jimena Pesquero Bordón, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina:

This case study analyzes processes of contentious action in rejection of so-called “mega-mining” deployed on a subnational scale in Argentina from 2019-2021. These processes respond to a new stage in the cycle of social conflict over environmental issues in twenty-first century Argentina. This stage is configured through citizen resistance in different provinces with repertoires of convergent struggle, particularly against state mining policy. This renewed policy promoted by the national government in coordination with provincial governments and transnational corporations takes place in a context of socio-economic, environmental and health crises exacerbated by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on a technocratic vision of society-nature articulations that clash with aspects of the current environmental legal system in Argentina, this model generates multiterritorial tensions (political, social, and cultural) in diverse subnational areas. The objective of the article is to understand the transformations of the actor dynamics around state mining policy in this context, including diverse and complex civil-social and political-institutional strategies.

Download a pdf of the complete article here.