Rio Minerals get prospecting nod

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It has been confirmed that a Canadian firm, Rio Minerals, is to be granted more than 100 prospecting licences for Inishowen.

Yesterday Sinn Fein’s Padraig MacLochlainn said he has submitted a parliamentary question seeking clarification on two issues - if they disover precious minerals what percentage will go to the Irish State, and what is the likely environmental impact of such mining?

Fianna Fail’s Charlie McConalogue pointed out that in the past many prospecting licences had been sought but few, if any, had ever been followed up.

The Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources confirmed he intends to grant prospecting licences in 29 townland in East Inishowen and over 80 in West Inishowen

The Journal learned yesterday that eight objections have been lodged against this grant prospecting licences in Inishowen to Rio Minerals - though only four of those are understood to be within the deadline

It is understood the Government intends to award the company prospecting licences for silver,gold and mercury exploration.

Maps showing the areas are available at Buncrana Garda Station and the Donegal County Council Offices, Carndonagh.

Rio Minerals is based in Vancouver.

The government points out that no actual mining licence has been issued.