9th Circuit blocks mining on sacred Shoshone land
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday issued a preliminary injunction barring the Interior Department from approving the expansion of a gold mine on sacred Western Shoshone land in Nevada.

A group that includes the South Fork Band Council of Western Shoshone, the Timbisha Shoshone Tribe and the Western Shoshone Defense Project sued to stop Barrick Gold Corporation, a Canadian company, from expanding the Cortez gold mine. The tribe say the operation will harm Mount Tenabo.

The 9th Circuit agreed that the Bureau of Land Management failed to examine all of the environmental impacts of the expansion. But the court noted that the tribes, at the trial level, did not prove how their religious rights would be impaired by the mine.

Get the Story:
Nevada Tribes Win Halt to Barrick Gold Mine Expansion (Environment News Service 12/3)
US court blocks huge gold mine project in Nevada (The San Francisco Chronicle 12/3)

9th Circuit Decision:
South Fork Band Council of Western Shoshone of Nevada v. DOI (December 3, 2009)

Related Stories:
Mining company buys land for Western Shoshone (6/18)
9th Circuit to consider injunction for sacred site (6/8)
Western Shoshone tribes await Supreme Court action (05/04)
Judge won't block mine near Western Shoshone site (1/27)
Tribes ask Supreme Court to hear sacred site case (01/06)
Judge hears Western Shoshone suit against mine (12/02)
Western Shoshones sue Interior over gold mine (11/24)