Mining of gold in the Tapanahony area without the use of mercury (TRI/01/04)
Mining of gold in the Tapanahony area without the use of mercury (TRI/01/04)
At the Toso and Sela creeks, tributaries of the Tapanahony river in eastern Suriname, gold is being mined on a large scale, in a environment-unfriendly way, with the aid of quicksilver (mercury). The quicksilver is used in order to bind gold selectively (chemical bond) so that the gold can easily be separated from all other material.
When this method is used however, the dangerous substance (quicksilver) finally ends up in the environment (ground, creeks, rivers, atmosphere). Because of this manner of gold mining, the health of the gold diggers and of the maroon community which lives in that area, is very seriously affected. Most maroon villages in that area are situated downstream of the gold mining locations. The local community which fully depends on the creek and river water for its use of water (potable water also), has no other choice than to drink the water which is contaminated with quicksilver. The fish and animals drink this polluted water as well so that the chance of quicksilver poisoning is constantly becoming bigger when the people eat the fish and animals. Since the Godo-holo Foundation is worried about the perilous quicksilver poisoning that threatens the people and since it learned that there are ways to mine gold without quicksilver, it has decided together with the dignitaries and other inhabitants of the area, to hire an expert who has to examine the application of a quicksilver-free manner of gold mining. This in order to stop the ascertained threat of quicksilver poisoning.
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Project Snapshot

Stichting Godo-holo
Area Of Work:
International Waters
Grant Amount:
US$ 2,000.00
Co-Financing Cash:
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 2,000.00
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed
Project Characteristics and Results
Notable Community Participation
Community members will be mobilised to support follow-on pilot project
Capacity - Building Component
Community-members, including gold-diggers, will be trained in mercury-free method of gold mining
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Grantee Contact

R. Abaisa


Kropkoolstraat # 80
Paramaribo , Paramaribo ,

SGP Country office contact

Mr. Eric Wijngaarde
597-420030 ext. 238


UNDP Sub-office Paramaribo, Gongrijpstraat 25
Paramaribo, Latin America