The New Conquistadors

The New Conquistadors

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John Ahni Schertow
June 23, 2012
 

The New Conquistadors, is a documentary produced through a collaboration between the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and the CBC News. It explores a battle between Canadian companies and local communities in Panama.

As Canadian mining companies seek to expand their presence in Central America, some Panama’s indigenous peoples and peasant farmers worry that the mining could lead to deforestation, polluted water supply and the displacement of local communities—including the Ngobe people, Panama’s largest indigenous group.

The plan to unearth billions of dollars worth of precious metals is a boon for these Panamanian communities, according to the mining companies; they bring jobs and economic development to the developing countries. But for the peasant farmers and indigenous peoples, the rewards aren’t worth sacrificing the environment.

For more information and background, visit the Pulitzer Center’s project page: Panama: The Canadian Conquistadors

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