In the final months of 2012, the Myanmar parliament approved the Letpadaung mine project and has been looking into the expansion of the copper mine. The deposit has 1.478 billion tons of copper and the project could be beneficial to the Myanmar economy. The expansion of the mine would affect more than 26 villages in the surrounding area.
However, in the months that followed, a large population of activistshas protested the expansion of the mine due to both the social and economic consequences of such expansion.
In regards to the people living there, the expansion of the project would mean losing their land: homes, farmland, schools, monasteries, (etc), which would result in the displacement of many people. In the same way, mining chemicals have been bad for the farmland as well as for the community, and have contaminated drinking water and crops, causing health problems to the people living nearby.
It is important for the Myanmar parliament to now ask whether or not the expansion of the Letpadaung project is worth both the short and long term interests of the people, the economy, and the environment.