Sunday, January 3, 2010

A Mining Accident in Annaro

The lore in Eve Online continues to be written by both CCP and the players themselves every day. Currently SCOPE, the largest NPC news agency in New Eden, is reporting on a mining accident in Annaro, a system controlled by the Caldari State. Eve Online is a dark, dangerous place and CCP seems to delight in making players face moral dilemmas, both in game play and in the backstory. I'll have to find the RSS feed for these stories, but for now let me get everyone caught up to date. But before I do, I think I need to give a description of the four factions in Eve Online for those of you who don't play the game.

The Caldari State - Founded on the tenets of patriotism and hard work that carried its ancestors through hardships on an inhospitable homeworld, the Caldari State is today a corporate dictatorship, led by rulers who are determined to see it return to the meritocratic ideals of old. Ruthless and efficient in the boardroom as well as on the battlefield, the Caldari are living emblems of strength, persistence, and dignity.

The Amarr Empire - The Amarrians rule a vast Empire, the largest and oldest of the four empires. Ruled by a mighty Empress, this vast theocratic society is supported by a broad foundation of Minmatar slave labor. Amarrian citizens tend to be highly educated and fervent individuals, and as a culture adheres to the basic tenet that what others call slavery is in fact one step on a spiritual path towards fully embracing their faith. As a result, the Empire remains the most stable and militarily powerful nation-state in New Eden, despite several setbacks in recent history.

The Minmatar - Of the four major races of New Eden, none has endured more turmoil than the Minmatar. Once a thriving tribal civilization, the Minmatar were enslaved by the Amarr Empire for more than 700 years until a massive rebellion freed most, but not all, of those held in servitude. Modeling their recovery after the Federation's success, the Minmatar Republic was born. But despite rising to prominence on the world stage, more than one third of the present-day population remains enslaved. The Minmatar people today are resilient, ingenious, and hard-working. Many of them believe that democracy, though serving them well at first, will never restore what was taken from them so long ago. Instead, they long for a government truly reflective of their tribal culture, and remain deeply attached to their enslaved kindred. They will forever resent the Amarrians, and yearn for the days before their accursed ships ever reached their home skies.

The Gallente Federation - Champions of liberty and fierce guardians of the human spirit, the Gallente Federation is the only true democracy in New Eden. Some of the most progressive leaders, scientists, and businessmen of the era have emerged from its diverse peoples. Pioneers of artificial intelligence, the Federation once relied almost entirely on drone fleets to defend its beliefs and borders. But the limitations of this technology and the lack of a human element—both in terms of a military strategy, and as a means of spreading influence— eventually reached a critical point. Today, Gallentean starships are manned by some of the bravest men and women of New Eden.

Here is the story so far...

Mining Accident in Annaro System Traps 200 Miners
reported by: ISD Threff Geldarran | 2009.12.29 17:51:24

Annaro -An asteroid in the Annaro system lost stability and collapsed on a team of nearly two hundred miners at a CBD Corporation mining facility. Thirty two miners are confirmed dead and the rest remain trapped below the surface. A dozen or more are reported to have serious injuries.

Evvlynne Deermin, spokesperson for CBD, explained the current situation in a press conference shortly after the accident. "We're holding out a lot of hope for the safe return of our miners. However, the situation is difficult. The asteroid is highly unstable, and the crew has limited oxygen."

Deermin would not comment when asked about the events leading up to the accident. One anonymous source near the scene claimed it started with a single misplaced explosive, causing a chain reaction of tunnel collapses in the hollowed-out asteroid. CBD Corporation is reported to be consulting urgently with their partner, Deep Core Mining.

Deep Core Mining 'Reluctant' to Commit Rescue Team, Ducia Foundry Offers Assistance

reported by: ISD Threff Geldarran | 2009.12.30 22:08:18

Annaro - Deep Core Mining has stated that it is reluctant to commit a rescue team to an asteroid in the Annaro system, where nearly 200 CBD Corporation miners remain trapped. According to reports, six of the asteroid's eight backup oxygen tanks were destroyed in the accident, and estimations by officials predict that the miners have a little less than six days of breathable air.

"While we feel deeply for the workers and their families," said a spokesman for Deep Core Mining's Astro-surveying division, "we are reluctant to send a team to the surface because of the extreme volatility of the asteroid. We're currently working with CBD to re-map the internals and weak points of the asteroid, and we have not found a way to drill to the trapped miners without causing a total collapse."

In an unusual development, a Ducia Foundry astro-surveying team has pledged assistance and believe they can extract the miners without any loss of life. However, a third of the Ducia team are slaves and have been denied access due to Caldari anti-slavery laws. Steen Greimala, director of the Amarr team, said, "We're here to help. Our team is highly skilled, but we understand the cultural differences and laws that make it difficult to accept our help. Our offer will remain open."

System police commander Garr Diymir told reporters, "The reason the Amarr team has offered a rescue plan is that the only people sent to the surface will be slaves. As much as we want to see the workers get out alive, we have no intention of allowing innocent people to be forcefully sacrificed. I'm confident that a Caldari organization will step forward with a legal solution soon."

CBD Corporation Under Pressure to Organize Legal Mine Rescue Operation

reported by: ISD Threff Geldarran | 2010.01.01 18:18:10

Annaro - CBD Corporation is under pressure to organize a legal rescue of trapped miners in the Annaro system. Numerous mining and surveying organizations have sent experts to analyze the situation, with only Amarr mining corporation Ducia Foundry offering a rescue team. However, this team is being refused access to the system because of its use of slaves.

Steen Greimala, director of the Ducia Foundry team, commented, "I would like to attempt this rescue because I see it as an opportunity for my team to use their skills to aid our Caldari friends. Our slaves, who we call the 'surface team,' are vital to our work and could not be replaced by simple volunteers "

Garr Diymir of the Annaro police said, "We've been in contact with the Ducia Foundry team leaders, but unfortunately they are not going to be able to help without violating Caldari law. Even if we make an exception, the asteroid is unstable and I'm told their rescue efforts could cause a further collapse and the death of both the miners and the rescuers."

Caldari law expert Dimm Margo explained, "Making an exception to the law in this case could set a dangerous precedent that would make it acceptable to break the law whenever we feel Caldari lives are in danger."

The miners remain in communication with the surface and have reported that three more workers have died in the last 24 hours from injuries sustained during the accident. The total number of stranded workers is now believed to be 176, with estimated air supplies at four days.

Debate Over Use of Slaves in Caldari Mine Rescue Continues

reported by: ISD Threff Geldarran | 2010.01.03 07:39:30

Annaro - Caldari law experts, police, and the families of buried miners continue to debate the possibility of allowing an Amarr team, many of whom are slaves, to attempt a rescue of almost two hundred miners at the collapsed CBD Corporation asteroid mine in the Annaro system.

In an interview today, Steen Greimala, director of the Ducia Foundry team, said, "At this point we've got all the data we're going to get about the situation. The longer we wait, the more difficult the extraction will be."

Amarrian Holder Aszhar Freimala, owner of a manufacturing firm and a customer of both CBD and Ducia Foundry, commented to reporters, "It's a shame that their distaste for one aspect of our culture would cause the Caldari to sacrifice their own people." Freimala is reported by sources at CBD Corporation to have been in private talks with CBD and members of Caldari law enforcement at CBD's Sell Division Retail Center in Annaro.

Several hundred family members of the trapped miners have organized a petition asking police to "look the other way," and are attempting to raise money to offer as payment to Ducia Foundry for the release of the slaves, despite the illegality of doing so. "I oppose slavery as much as any Caldari, but letting our children grow up without their fathers is not going to put an end to it," said a representative for the group. Time continues to run out for the trapped miners, with air supplies now estimated at three days.
In the interests of full disclosure, I have two Eve Online accounts and the main characters on both accounts are Minmatar, so I'm a bit partial to the Minmatar. I have an idea how this is going to turn out, but I'll be reading the news as I log in every day to find out if I'm right.

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