Protecting Rautalampi's exceptional nature and the rights of the local community against multinational mining companies
Rautalampi is located in the providence of Northern Savonia (62°37′20″N, 026°50′00″E), Finland. Rautalampi is known for the Southern Konnevesi national park and the Rautalampi water route - the largest free-flowing and unregulated Finnish inland waterway.
The mining giant Rio Tinto is searching for copper and nickel in the Rautalampi area despite the opposition of the local community. Unfortunately, the current mining law in Finland does not protect nature or the rights of local residents.
This website is maintained by a group of Rautalampi residents and friends of Rautalampi. We wish to maintain the clean waters and diverse nature for the future generations.
The unique and vulnerable nature of Rautalampi
Rautalampi waterway is one of the most valuable freshwater ecosystems in Finland. It consists of several large lakes with excellent water quality and unregulated, free-flowing rapids, which are protected by the Finnish law for rapid waters. It is inhabited by many rare freshwater-dependent species, including the endangered anadromous salmon and freshwater forms of Brown trout, Salmo trutta. It is also a significant nesting and resting area for aquatic birds. There are undisturbed forests and rocky areas all along its rivers and lakes.
Southern Konnevesi National Park
Southern Konnevesi National Park was established in 2014, and it has fast become one of the most popular nature destinations in central Finland. The prestigious Konnevesi Lake with its wide-open waters, mazes of islands and rugged cliffs is located in the national park. The population of ospreys, Pandion haliaetus is the most dense of central Finland, and the osprey is actually the symbol for the national park.
Rio Tinto in Rautalampi
The second-largest mining company in the world, Anglo-Australian Rio Tinto, has done prospecting analyses in the Rautalampi area in the past few years. The company has decided to proceed to ore finding ignoring the local opposition.
The ore exploration areas are located:
- 50 meters for the Southern Konnevesi National Park
- at the historically valuable Saahkari-Myhinpää scenic road
- at many valuable rocky areas
- along the Rautalampi waterway close to multiple lakes (Konnevesi, Hankavesi, Myhinjärvi, Vahvanen, Korppinen)
- around important water table areas
- less than 2 kilometres from the Rautalampi village centre
These are not suitable places to even consider mining activity!
We demand that Rio Tinto withdraws from ore exploration and stops their plans to establish mining in the area!
Rio Tinto has repeatedly claimed that they listen and respect the local communities, but in reality they repeatedly continue to act against their claims. Rio Tinto applied for a mining permit in the Rautalampi area in March 2021, only one day after the municipal council had unanimously decided to not approve mining in the area.
We want the Finnish mining law to be changed to include the right for the municipal council to prohibit mining and to better take into consideration other livelihoods and protection of the nature.
We demand that Rio Tinto withdraws from ore exploration and stops their plans to establish mining in the area. Our intention is to maintain the ecological and cultural values also for the future generations and ensure that the local communities are heard related to how the local land is used.