Suriname

In 2014 a fact finding mission was carried out in Suriname in cooperation with Grassalco a local company (www.grassalco.com/).The aim was to get an idea on what type of small-scale gold mining was carried out and how a mercury-free gold extraction could be implemented. There is genuine small-scale mining, but most of the operations involve heavy machinery in large pits. Mercury is used to extract the gold. The ore is deeply weathered and can be dug up with excavators. One outstanding observation was made. In more than one mine the miners manually sprinkled mercury over the ore before it was dug up or flushed up to the processing sites!

Grassalco could unfortunately not raise funding for a project introducing mercury-free gold extraction.

Miner sprinkling mercury through a piece of cloth over weathered gold ore

Miner sprinkling mercury through a piece of cloth over weathered gold ore