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Major environmental crimes Major environmental crimes
The economic scale of environmental crime is substantial - especially on illegal logging and fisheries - and probably just as large as or well exceed global ODA (Official Development Assistance) of around USD 135 billion.
19 Jun 2014 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, GRID Arendal
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Environmental crime network Environmental crime network
The opportunities ecosystems provide for future development are threatened by serious and increasingly sophisticated transnational organized environmental crime. This includes illegal logging, poaching and trafficking of a wide range of animals, illegal fisheries, illegal mining and dumping of toxic waste. It is a rapidly rising threat to the environment, to revenues from natural resources, to state security and to sustainable development. Combin...
19 Jun 2014 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, GRID Arendal
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Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) Artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM)
Mercury residues from mining and industrial processing, as well as mercury in waste, have resulted in a large number of contaminated sites all over the world. Polluted soil can contain as much as 400 grammes of mercury per hectare, as measured at a Venezuelan gold mining site (Garcia-Sanchez et al., 2006). Most mercury contamination sites are concentrated in the industrial areas of North America, Europe and Asia; and in sub-Saharan Africa and Sou...
11 Oct 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Global mercury supply Global mercury supply
Artisanal and small-scale Gold Mining (ASGM) is the largest sector of demand for mercury, using it to separate the metal from the ore. Though mercury mining and by-products were very high in the eighties, since then, mining practices have reduced and recycling is on the rise.
11 Oct 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Global annual mercury mining production Global annual mercury mining production
Global annual mercury production was at its peak in 1971 and has since significantly decreased. In 2005, UNEP estimated global annual mercury demand at be- tween 3,000 and 3,900 tonnes (UNEP, 2006). Demand has fallen significantly in the last 50 years, from 9,000 tonnes a year in the 1960s to 7,000 in the 1980s and 4,000 a decade later (UNEP, 2006). A growing understanding of the risks posed by the toxicity of mercury, the increasing availability...
11 Oct 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Illegal Logging and the Congo Conflict Illegal Logging and the Congo Conflict
Illegal logging directly fuels many conflicts as timber is a resource available for conflict profiteers or to finance arms sales. Without public order, militants, guerillas or military units impose taxes on logging companies or charcoal producers, issue false export permits and control border points. They frequently demand the removal of all vehicle check points and public patrolling of resource-rich areas as part of the peace conditions followin...
27 Sep 2012 - by GRID-Arendal
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South Eastern Europe to Central Asia: political transition and environmental risks South Eastern Europe to Central Asia: political transition and environmental risks
The graphic maps out the areas that are at risk, or already contaminated from nuclear industry after the break-up of the former Soviet Union. Nuclear power has unresolved problems of waste disposal. Waste remains dangerous for thousands of human generations and can be converted to plutonium, a component of nuclear weapons. The mining of nuclear fuel, containing U-235 and U-238, can pollute groundwater with both heavy metals and traces of radioact...
11 Feb 2006 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Balkans: hazardous industrial sites, water pollution and mining hot spots Balkans: hazardous industrial sites, water pollution and mining hot spots
The environmental legacy associated with extraction industries is all too familiar. Badly operated or abandoned mining sites have already caused severe pollution, some with impacts spilling across national boundaries: heavy metal spills from Baia Borsa tailings in Romania; the cyanide spill from Baia Mare in Romania; heavy metal spills from Sasa tailings in Macedonia; and various releases at Majdanpek and Veliki Majdan in Serbia, and Mojkovac in ...
30 Nov 2007 - by UNEP/DEWA/GRID-Europe
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Industrial sites in Kosovo Industrial sites in Kosovo
In Kosovo mining itself promises to create 35 000 jobs. A large part of this plan is associated with the exploitation of lignite (a type of coal), which is supposed to be used exclusively for electricity generation. On the basis of existing demand for electricity in Kosovo, the known deposits would produce sufficient energy for about 1 000 years.
30 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, Stephane Kluser, Matthias Beilstein, Ieva Rucevska, Cecile Marin, Otto Simonett
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The Bor copper mines The Bor copper mines
Southeast Europe, as we have seen, has a long history of mining base and precious metals, reaching back to the fifth century BC at least. In Serbia, for example, archaeological exploration of the Bor site suggests that copper mining started in prehistoric times.
30 Nov 2007 - by Unknown
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Overview of the Rosia Montana planned mining facilities (Romania) Overview of the Rosia Montana planned mining facilities (Romania)
The Rosia Montana gold and silver mining project in Romania's Apuseni Mountains has been in and out of the environmental headlines in recent years. It is a fascinating case of the new market economy trying to conduct a dirty old industrial activity in a completely new and much cleaner way – at least in Romania.
30 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, Stephane Kluser, Matthias Beilstein, Ieva Rucevska, Cecile Marin, Otto Simonett
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Output from copper mines in Serbia 1990-2005, compared to Western Europe Output from copper mines in Serbia 1990-2005, compared to Western Europe
Between 1944 and 1991, the mining, processing, and downstream exploitation of base metals established the Balkans as a major European source of copper, lead, zinc and a global producer of chromite. Mining was one of the flagship industrial sectors, influencing the area more largely than in simply economic terms.
30 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, Stephane Kluser, Matthias Beilstein, Ieva Rucevska, Cecile Marin, Otto Simonett
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Gold production of the Ok Tedi mine Gold production of the Ok Tedi mine
The Ok Tedi mine is located high in the rain forest covered Star Mountains of Papua New Guinea. Prior to 1981 the local Wopkaimin people lived a subsistence existence in one of the most isolated places on earth. That was before the 10 000 strong town of Tabubil suddenly appeared in the middle of their community. The Ok Tedi mine was built on the world’s largest gold and copper deposit (gold ore capping the main copper deposit).
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Mining effects on rainfall drainage Mining effects on rainfall drainage
The Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) is the number one environmental problem facing the mining industry. AMD occurs when sulphide-bearing minerals in rock are exposed to air and water, changing the sulphide to sulphuric acid. It can devastate aquatic habitats, is difficult to treat with existing technology, and once started, can continue for centuries (Roman mine sites in Great Britain continue to generate acid drainage 2000 years after mining ceased)....
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Waste generation scheme Waste generation scheme
The graphic gives a general illustration of a waste generation & management scheme. Using car production as a example, the associated text includes references as follows: Raw Materials: Mining of minerals: copper, iron, lead, zinc, and aluminum (generating waste in the neighborhood of the mines), etc. Production: During the final assembly: paints, coatings, lubricants and fluids (generating excess materials – a specific type of waste) Distributi...
14 Sep 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Ok Tedi mine Ok Tedi mine
The Ok Tedi mine is located high in the rain forest covered Star Mountains of Papua New Guinea. Prior to 1981 the local Wopkaimin people lived a subsistence existence in one of the most isolated places on earth. That was before the 10 000 strong town of Tabubil suddenly appeared in the middle of their community. The Ok Tedi mine was built on the world’s largest gold and copper deposit (gold ore capping the main copper deposit).
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Ore production and waste generation at Ok Tedi Mine Ore production and waste generation at Ok Tedi Mine
The Ok Tedi mine is located high in the rain forest covered Star Mountains of Papua New Guinea. Prior to 1981 the local Wopkaimin people lived a subsistence existence in one of the most isolated places on earth. That was before the 10 000 strong town of Tabubil suddenly appeared in the middle of their community. The Ok Tedi mine was built on the world’s largest gold and copper deposit (gold ore capping the main copper deposit). From the very begi...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Radioactive, chemical and biological hazards in Central Asia Radioactive, chemical and biological hazards in Central Asia
The Soviet development model for Central Asia was based on building large-scale irrigation schemes enabling the region to become a major cotton producer and expanding the mining and processing industry. Industrial operations in the region paid little attention to the environment and public health, resulting in the accumulation of pollutants in the local environment. Today, not only active industrial facilities constitute a threat to environment, ...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Mining waste rock Mining waste rock
Regardless of the type of raw material, its extraction always comes with an environmental cost. Most mining leaves a lasting and damaging environmental footprint. For example, during the extraction of common metals like copper, lead or zinc from the earth both metal-bearing rock, called ore, and “overburden”, the dirt and rock that covers the ore are removed. At a typical copper mine around 125 tonnes of ore are excavated to produce just one ton...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Human activities leading to coastal degradation Human activities leading to coastal degradation
Physical alteration and destruction of habitats are now considered one of the most important threats to coastal [and marine] areas. This graphic shows the extent to which twelve different human activities cause environmental degradation in estuaries, inter-tidal wetlands and the open ocean. The activities include the drainage of coastal ecosystems; the construction of dykes, dams and seawalls and the mining of wetlands.
17 May 2005 - by Delphine Digout, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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