Cobalt Ore

In 2014, CPN began work focused on natural resource extraction and land use, issues of great importance to all of the global locations where CPN has been involved. Conflict and violence have been frequent as parties have struggled for control of the wealth offered by these resources, laborers have faced exploitation and danger, and environmental harm has occurred leading to greater social instability. CPN has attempted to map Catholic engagement on these issues. And in Fall 2015, CPN sponsored a colloquium to invite scholars and experts to craft a strategy for generating theological and ethical study of these issues through the lens of peacebuilding and Catholic Social Teaching. Based on the work of that colloquium, CPN is in the process of executing a long-term research plan to integrate existing research on extractives, relate it to the practices of the Catholic community, and consider it from a peacebuilding perspective. The initiative includes:



Group photo of SECAM meeting on natural resource conflict in Africa in front of Holy Spirit Cathedral, Accra, Ghana

"Conflicts in Africa in the Context of the Exploitation of Natural and Mining Resources"
March 8-10, 2024
Accra, Ghana


Peace Studies for Sustainable Development in Africa webinar series, "Mining and Catholic Peacebuilding: Beyond Conflict Minerals"
April 20, 2022

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The Kroc Cast: Peace Studies Conversations, "Peace Policy Spotlight: Catholic Peacebuidling and Mining"
February 14, 2022

David Cortright, Professor Emeritus of the Practice at the Kroc Institute and Editor of the Kroc Institute’s Peace Policy publication sits down to talk with authors from the latest issue. This issue features reflections drawn from the new book, Catholic Peacebuilding and Mining: Integral Peace, Development, and Ecology published by Routledge in January, 2022.

Guests include one of the co-editors of the book and the Assistant Director of the Catholic Peacebuilding Network, Caesar Montevecchio; Father Rigobert Minani, S.J., head of research for the Peace, Human Rights, Democracy, and Good Governance Department at the Centre d’Etude Pour l’Action Sociale in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and team leader for the Ecclesial Network of the Congo Basin Forest; and Katherine Marshall, Senior Fellow at Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs, and Executive Director of the World Faiths Development Dialogue.

You can read all articles from this issue at peacepolicy.nd.edu.

The Global Pathways Podcast with Ray Offenheiser, "Rethinking the role of the Extractive Industries with Peter Bryant of the Development Partner Institute"
February 14, 2020

Episode Five continues the discussion with the Catholic Peacebuilding Network on the extractive industries. Ray Offenheiser speaks with Peter Bryant – Chair and Co-Founder of the Development Partner Institute – and discusses how the Extractive Industries are rethinking their role in society.

The Global Pathways Podcast with Ray Offenheiser, "Activism in the Extractive Industries with Ian Gary of Oxfam America"
February 13, 2020

Ian Gary – Director of Power and Money at Oxfam America – talks with Ray Offenheiser and discusses the ethics and activism in the extractive industries. This episode is a recording of Offenheiser’s conversation with Gary as part of a two-part, live webinar hosted in partnership with the Catholic Peacebuilding Network.


Resources and Documents

Environment Extractives

Also visit the following sites for Church organizations specifically dedicated to working on issues of extractives in CPN partner areas.

Iglesias y Minería: Churches and Mining is an ecumenical group made up of lay groups, religious congregations, and bishops and pastors addressing issues around mining and justice.

REPAM: Red Ecclesia Amazonica, a cooperative commission of bishops' conferences in the Amazon basin that works on issues of environment and natural resources.

Ecclesial Network of the Congo Basin Forest: A cooperative of regional and national justice and peace commissions of the Symposium of the Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar.

Alyansa Tigil Mina: Composed of Non-Government Organizations, People’s Organizations, Church groups and academic institutions, Alyansa Tigil Mina is both an advocacy group and a people’s movement, working in solidarity to protect Filipino communities and natural resources that are threatened by large-scale mining operations.

Justice in Mining: A global network of Jesuit social centers and organizations working on socio-environmental justice in areas impacted by extractive-related conflict.