Communication Exercise: Save Roșia Montană vs. RMGC and What Will Come Next

I wrote about the communication exercise of both “fighters” here on the blog, 4 times before: 1, 2, 3, 4. There is not much to say, I am under the impression that this is the last stretch until the final outcome. I think that what will follow after is as important as the result of the two. That is,

1. Save Roșia Montană obtains approval to stop the mining project. It will definitely be a highly celebrated victory by all activists and supporters of the conservation of resources, heritage and nature. What is important is that such a decision will give a major impetus to all environmental activists, and the current and future governments will be confronted with new protests against them or the corporations / investors involved in heritage or environmentally sensitive projects. This potential victory will be considered as a spearhead by non-profit organisations, they will gain courage, much more than before. In general, the civic voice of an important segment of the population, I am talking about the 25-40 segment in particular, will have more courage to speak publicly, to subscribe with more bravery and strength to NGO initiatives.

2. The mining project receives final approval. In this case, the Pandora’s box will most likely open, giving much freer rein to other controversial resource exploitation projects with major environmental implications, from forest exploitation to the adoption / legalisation of hazardous substances. The victory of RMGC will probably lead at first to massive protests, in situ and through the media, but the blazing factor generated in this way among NGOs and activists is not to be neglected.

Communication standstill. The current moment, from a communication point of view, is especially favourable for those from Save Roșia Montană given the current conditions, including here the request to introduce the site on the UNESCO list. RMGC has little comeback, any usable public message has been virtually exhausted. Stock prices and gold have become delicate topics. Information and publicity campaigns would no longer be of any use, they would simply be money thrown out the window, they would have no ideas to propose, especially when SRM demands no less than the safeguarding of the site through UNESCO.

On the other hand, in the case of a favourable response for RMGC, the Government and the institutions involved will have to justify and communicate the decision. Hard and complicated to manage.

I believe that we are standing in front of a crucial political decision, which, whatever it may be, would significantly change the way and intensity of civil society’s engagement in community life and the approach of the state and corporations to them and to environmentally sensitive exploitation projects. Possibly, one of the most important political decisions in Romania after the writing of the Constitution.