Illegal gold mining crisis

Thanks to Ingle & Rhode, I've become aware of a recent report from Reuters which suggests that the soaring price of gold has created a new gold rush that is spreading to the world's remotest corners and leading to a highly dangerous rise in illegal mining and destabilising remote ethnic communities.

Gold prices have trebled over the last five years. As a result, mining corporations have found it worth moving into remote and sometimes unstable parts of the world. Sometimes, this attracts them into a previously unexplored area and leads to them encroaching onto the territory of artisanal miners, while at other times local people are attracted by the activity of the big company.

The result can be violent confrontations between mine security and illegal miners. Moreover, since illegal mining is unregulated, it is often carried out in extremely dangerous conditions - fatalities are not uncommon. At least six illegal miners, aged between 14 and 20, died at AngloGold Ashanti’s Obuasi mine in Ghana in the last month, officials have said.

Published: 04-08-2008

Published By: Rosie


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