Turkey Cancels Environmental Permits For SSR Mining’s Copler Mine, Detains Company Director

A massive landslide at Anagold Madencilik’s Copler gold mine in Turkey’s Erzincan province has left nine workers trapped under rubble, sparking a search and rescue operation that has been ongoing for six days. Cengiz Demirci, a director of Anagold’s parent company, SSR Mining’s (TSX: SSRM), has also been detained, along with eight other mine employees, six of whom have been arrested in connection with the incident.

Adding to the gravity of the situation, Turkey’s Environment Ministry has revoked Anagold’s environmental permit and license, raising concerns about the environmental impact of the disaster. Experts have warned of potential hazards due to cyanide in the soil, a byproduct of gold extraction, with fears of contamination reaching the nearby Euphrates River.

This is not the first environmental incident at the Copler mine. In 2020, the mine was shut down following a cyanide leak into the Euphrates, leading to its reopening only after fines were imposed and cleanup operations were completed.

The repercussions of the landslide have extended beyond the mine itself, with shares of SSR Mining dropping over 50% in the aftermath of the disaster. This financial fallout underscores investor concerns about the company’s future prospects and potential liabilities.

In the latest operating results, the Copler mine contributed 35.5% of the company’s total gold production for Q3 2023.

Turkey’s history of poor mine safety further compounds the seriousness of the situation, with past incidents including the deaths of 41 workers in a 2022 coal mine explosion and 301 fatalities in the 2014 Soma coal mine disaster.

SSR Mining last traded at $6.60 on the TSX.

Information for this briefing was found via the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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