Bristol Bay – which golden promise will tarnish first?

When it comes to the whole Bristol Bay gold mine debate, I may be in a minority.

It’s not Anglo American CEO Cynthia Carroll’s promise that catches my eye, you see.

Now given its content – “We won’t dig a gold mine where we’re not welcome” – you may think it should. How much more unequivocal could Ms Carroll have been, you might ask? Just how tight a corner is she supposed to paint herself into?

Well, you must remember, I’m from the land whose politicians promised us a vote on whether we surrender our sovereignty to a United States of Europe. That, too, seemed pretty short on wiggle room at the time.

And guess what?

No, the commitment I’m keeping a wary eye on is that from the 50 leading jewellers that have pledged not to use gold from the Pebble Mine.

Let’s say that same mine becomes as real as Pebble Beach and we’re five years further on. How many of those 50 will still be holding the line, I wonder, and how many will have buried their pledge beneath a thousand platitudes about “the need to deliver shareholder value”?

Maybe it’s just the Audrey Hepburn connection but I still want to think good things about Tiffany’s…

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