RENO, Nev. (AP) - Lawyers
for an environmental group and Native American tribes trying to block
another expansion at one of the biggest gold mines in North America say
the U.S. government -- in concert with the largest gold company in the
world -- is making an unprecedented attempt to skirt two of the nation's
fundamental laws protecting federal lands.
In a case that's been
bouncing back and forth between federal court in Reno and the 9th
Circuit Court of Appeals for nearly three years, the U.S. Bureau of Land
Management and Barrick Gold Corp.
have countered that the Great Basin Resource Watch and the Western
Shoshone are exaggerating the harm the mining operation will cause to
the groundwater beneath Nevada's Mt. Tenabo, and to the cultural and
religious beliefs of native people who regard the water as sacred.
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