1. Economy

Impact of gold mining on Natural Areas

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Threatened Natural Areas:

In addition to officially protected areas, the mining industry has a long history of threatening natural areas.


Nearly three-quarters of active mines and exploration sites overlap with areas that are categorized as having a high conservation cost. Mining poses the greatest threat to biodiversity and “frontier woodland,” which are large tracts of relatively undisturbed forest.


The highlighted mine sites below show the country's environmental degradation caused by mining all around the sector:


Indonesia's Grasberg Mine:

Lorentz National Park, the largest blanketed area in Southeast Asia, is located in the Indonesian province of West Papua, which is located in the western half of the island of New Guinea.


In 1999, this 2.5 million-hectare area, roughly the size of Vermont, was designated as a World Heritage Site and a National Park. However, Freeport-McMoRan Copper and Gold, Inc. had begun pursuing gold veins through nearby formations as early as 1973.


In the end, this operation led to the discovery of the park's richest gold and copper lode, close to the boundary. Grasberg, the open-pit mine that resulted, is operated by its subsidiary, PT Freeport Indonesia. It already possesses the following:


infected the coastal estuary, the Arafura Sea, and probably the Lorentz National Park. It also caused neighbourhood fighting and moves. It dumped 100,000 tons of toxic mine tailings into the Ajikwa river every afternoon, causing a deadly landslide. The Grasberg mine is now visible from the outside. It will have dug a 230-square-kilometre hole in the wooded area and produced over three billion tonnes of tailings by the time it closes in 30 years.


Ghana's Akyem Mine:

In 2007, Newmont opened the Akyem mine in Ghana after a contentious conflict with community protests. The largest open-pit mine in Ghana, this one could uproot 183 acres of dense forests.


Over the past forty years, a significant amount of the forest land in Ghana has been cleared. Only about 11% of the original woodland cover remains. Eighty-three bird species benefit from this biodiversity hotspot, as well as threatened and endangered species like the Pohle's fruit bat, Zenker's fruit bat, and Pel's flying squirrel. Additionally, Ghana's forest reserves are extremely important for the protection of numerous endangered and rare plant species. The Akyem mine was opposed by many network participants due to its potential to contaminate freshwater and destroy forests, both of which they depend on. It is anticipated that the mine will begin operations in 2013.


US: Pebble Mine

The Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay, Alaska, has the potential to become the largest mine in North America if it reaches its full potential. Over the course of its operation, the mine will consume more than three billion tons of waste and cover a land area of more than 39 square kilometres.


The organization proposes taking in more than 70 million gallons (or 265 million liters) of water per day, which is nearly three times as much as the city of Anchorage uses of water. The Bristol Bay watershed is home to the world's largest sockeye salmon run and the world's largest commercial sockeye salmon fishery.116 In addition to being essential to the subsistence way of life of Alaska Native people, salmon, caribou, moose, and the various other fish and wildlife sources in the Bristol Bay watershed are important economic drivers in the kingdom.


A powerful and diverse group opposes the Pebble Project and the associated development. The Alaska Wilderness Recreation and Tourism Association, Alaska's senior US senator Ted Stevens, and a number of tribal governments of the state have all passed resolutions in support of the project.119 Commercial salmon fishing agencies, the best Alaska searching and fishing inns, fishing and conservation businesses, and the Alaska Inter-Tribal Council have also expressed competition.


The Parks Are Mined:

The purpose of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention is to identify and safeguard regions worldwide whose cultural and herbal costs are “terrific cost to humanity.” The inclusion on the list necessitates increased protection for special regions whose cultural or natural significance extends far beyond local or national borders. Unfortunately, mining companies have even encroached into these areas, as distinct in our Dirty Metals record. The following are just a few of the unusual areas that have been invaded by gold mining groups:


Volcanoes of Kamatchhka, Russia Central Suriname NAture Reserve, Suriname Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda Kahuzi-Biega National Park, Congo Okapi Wildlife Reserve, DRC Southeast Atlantic Forest Reserve, Brazil Sangay National Park, Ecuador Huascaran National Park, Peru


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