Chile’s Pascua Lama: Where Water Is Worth More than Gold

  • Juliet Pinto
  • Paola Prado
  • J. Alejandro Tirado-Alcaraz
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Media and Environmental Communication book series (PSMEC)


In recent years, the expansion of mega-mining projects in remote regions of South America has politicized and internationalized conflicts over water, and given rise to regional coalitions of local farmers and indigenous communities who protest the socio-environmental threat posed by the use of water in mining projects such as the one at Pascua Lama. Further, the polluting nature of the chemical processes at Pascua Lama pose contamination hazards to watersheds, rivers and other water sources. Most of the news coverage took one of two predominant approaches: reports either presented the threat that the gold mine represented to the watershed as “business as usual,” or the narrative took on melodramatic tones with a focus on the social or political conflict that ensued. Journalistic norms and routines inherent in this dynamic have been found to contribute to an overexposure of official and elite sources.


Moral Responsibility Indigenous Community News Article News Story News Report 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juliet Pinto
    • 1
  • Paola Prado
    • 2
  • J. Alejandro Tirado-Alcaraz
    • 3
  1. 1.Journalism and Mass CommunicationFlorida International UniversityNorth MiamiUSA
  2. 2.Communication DeptRoger Williams UniversityBristolUSA
  3. 3.Dept. Politics & International RelationsRoger Williams UniversityBristolUSA

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