Title

Napa Gold Rush: Perceptions of Environmental and Social Change

Date of Publication

2022 12:00 AM

Security Theme

Illegal Mining

Keywords

Illegal Mining, illegal mining, Ecuadorian Amazon

Description

In Tena Canton, Napo Province, Ecuador, hundreds of foreign independent illegal gold miners descended onto the rural Yutzupino community, less than ten miles from the provincial capital of Tena, with over hundred-fifty excavators classifiers, and ounces of mercury. In less than a year, from October 2021 - February 2022, these miners excavated and deforested over 500 acres of primary forest and Jatunyacu River beaches and islands. These illegal gold miners were able to take advantage of the precarious economic condition that several Latin American nations have experienced as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic. The gold miners also benefitted from Ecuadorian national policies, and international financial institutions' guidance that promoted sectors like mining as part of the recovery of the Ecuadorian economy. Furthermore, Illegal gold miners were likely financed by organized crime groups, wealthy local elites, and corrupt government officials.

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Jan 1st, 12:00 AM

Napa Gold Rush: Perceptions of Environmental and Social Change

In Tena Canton, Napo Province, Ecuador, hundreds of foreign independent illegal gold miners descended onto the rural Yutzupino community, less than ten miles from the provincial capital of Tena, with over hundred-fifty excavators classifiers, and ounces of mercury. In less than a year, from October 2021 - February 2022, these miners excavated and deforested over 500 acres of primary forest and Jatunyacu River beaches and islands. These illegal gold miners were able to take advantage of the precarious economic condition that several Latin American nations have experienced as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic. The gold miners also benefitted from Ecuadorian national policies, and international financial institutions' guidance that promoted sectors like mining as part of the recovery of the Ecuadorian economy. Furthermore, Illegal gold miners were likely financed by organized crime groups, wealthy local elites, and corrupt government officials.