Regional Coordinator for Latin America and the Caribbean
Program Associate for Latin America
With over 16,000 Peruvians dying each year from pollution-related diseases, pollution has a huge health cost in Peru. Mercury from gold mining is responsible for many of these deaths. Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) is a traditional livelihood in Peru, providing much needed income for many impoverished communities. Currently, the prevailing method of ASGM in the country involves using large amounts of mercury to extract gold. These activities result in the release of tons of mercury each year, causing significant air, soil, and water contamination and severe health impacts on local communities. Without intervention and remediation, mercury contamination will continue to poison generations of Peruvians.
Since 2017, Pure Earth has been working with CINCIA, a local research center that develops ways to restore degraded land in the Peruvian Amazon. Using CINCIA’s cutting-edge methodology, Pure Earth has been working hand-in-hand with formalized gold miners to reforest their degraded mining concession and fulfill mine closure requirements.
Blog Posts and Press Coverage
- A Mining Association in the Amazon Learns the Art of Mercury-Free Gold (2022)
- An Amazonian Mining Community Fulfilling Its Obligation to the Rainforest (2020)
- Mercury Falling, The Chemical Engineer (March 11th, 2019)
- Models of Hope: Rainforest Reforestation Brings Degraded Mining Sites Back to Life (2019)
- Restoring Rainforest Stripped by Mining (2018)
- Transforming the Chichiqueros Gold Mining Community in Peru’s Rainforest (2017)
- Emerging From a State of Emergency (2016)
- Teaching Artisanal Gold Miners to Extract Gold Without Mercury (2016)
- Lake Titicaca Cleanup— Bolivia and Peru Pledge $500 million (2016)
- A Path of Gold and Destruction (2015)
- Doe Run Peru— A Solution in Sight (2012)