Oxfam Launches Market Campaign Against Gold

According to Oxfam America, Earthworks/Mineral Policy Center and Oxfam America have collaborated on the launch of “No Dirty Gold, a consumer campaign intended to shake up the gold industry and change the way gold is mined, bought and sold. The two organizations have targeted the US gold jewelry market for the major consumer campaign, because gold mining is arguably the dirtiest industry operating in the US and in many parts of the world. “Right now, purchasers of gold jewelry and high-tech products have no alternative but to buy products that contain dirty gold, said Keith Slack, Senior Policy Advisor with Oxfam America. Adds Payal Sampat, International Campaign Director with Earthworks, “We’re asking consumers to consider the real cost of gold and we’re enlisting their help to put an end to mining practices that endanger people and ecosystems.” Gold mining is being targeted as an industry ripe for reform through consumer pressure because of the extensively documented human and environmental costs of gold mining. Most consumers don’t realize that in developing countries gold mining is associated with protests, human rights abuses, and even imprisonment, along with environmental devastation. The production of a single 18 Karat gold ring weighing less than an ounce generates at least 20 tons of mine waste. Metals mining employs less than one-tenth of one percent of the global workforce but consumes 7 to 10 percent of the world’s energy. Additionally, Earthworks and Oxfam are releasing a report today, called “Dirty Metals: Mining, Communities and the Environment, which details the massive pollution and, in many cases, human rights abuses that have become hallmarks of gold and metals mining in countries such as Peru, Indonesia, Ghana and in parts of the United States. The report and a fact sheet on gold mining can be downloaded from www.nodirtygold.org. “Our people have suffered beatings, imprisonment, and murder for standing up for our community rights against multinational mining companies, said Daniel Owusu-Koranteng, a mining activist from the Tarkwa district of Ghana where 30,000 people were displaced by gold mining operations between 1990 and 1998. “We want buyers of gold to support our rights and demand that mining companies adhere to higher ethical standards.”
weblink: No Dirty Gold Campaign Websitefrom: Oxfam Americain detail XlnkS649 XlnkC18E5

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