Mineral Exploration

Spring 2017

Mineral Exploration is the official publication of the Association of Mineral Exploration British Columbia.

Issue link: http://digital.canadawide.com/i/789828

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Page 20 of 23

S pring 20 17 21 PHOTOS: KYLIE WILLIAMS around the world, with artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) as a key focus. "The work that we do starts with a request from a national government who have identified an area where they need help to support the sustainable development of their natural resources," says Stevens, explaining that governments need to understand the problem before they can develop useful policies to protect the environment and the people involved. "Mining engineers in Canada learn a lot of high-end technical information about how to build and operate a major modern mine, and that's important, but due to the type of mining, the ASM world requires a di¤erent technical skill set and an awareness of the complex social environment," says Stevens. Canadian geoscientists, engineers and other professionals are playing a key role in solving the global artisanal mining problem. Exploration companies – which have not traditionally invested in early-stage social programs and environmental monitoring – are realizing that solid community relationships and a wealth of baseline environmental data adds real value to an exploration project. A good first impression is invaluable, reduces the risk for potential investors down the line, and ensures new mines can be developed in socially and environmentally responsible ways that achieve prosperity for everyone. (far left) Local workers Anderson and Carlos Mejía carry drill rods past El Alacran to Cordoba Minerals drill sites; (left) Rudimentary mining and processing equipment at El Alacran artisanal gold mining operations in northern Colombia; (below left) Traditional miner José Diaz continues to operate aging processing equipment at El Alacran mine.

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