According to our calculation, the six (mining) locations where the project is being implemented have reduced the use of mercury by 23 tons and produced 3.3 tons of mercury-free gold.
Jakarta (ANTARA) – The Environment and Forestry Ministry succeeded in reducing the use of mercury by 23 tons at six small-scale gold mines, Director General of Toxic and Hazardous Waste Management at the ministry Rosa Vivien Ratnawati stated.
Ratnawati noted here on Wednesday that the achievement was realized through the implementation of the Global Opportunities for Long-Term Development Integrated Sound Management of Mercury in Indonesia’s Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining (GOLD-ISMIA) Project.
The project was implemented by the ministry in collaboration with the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) as well as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the director general remarked.
“According to our calculation, the six (mining) locations where the project is being implemented have reduced the use of mercury by 23 tons and produced 3.3 tons of mercury-free gold,” she noted during the dissemination of information on the results of the GOLD-ISMIA Project.
It demonstrates to both international and domestic parties that Indonesia has fulfilled its obligations properly as a member of the Minamata Convention on Mercury that aims to decrease the utilization of the chemical element.
Through the collaboration, which is also assisted by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), Indonesia has been able to strengthen the central and regional government policies to achieve the targets of the National Action Plan on Mercury Reduction and Elimination.
Furthermore, the government has succeeded in facilitating the permit issuance of People’s Mining Areas and People’s Mining License as well as assisting the miners to obtain financing and establish mercury-free gold processing facilities.
The GOLD-ISMIA Project had also helped BRIN to provide alternative technology to replace the utilization of mercury in mining.
Ratnawati stated that the GOLD-ISMIA Project has also become a pilot for ministries and agencies as well as local governments to expedite the legalization of artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM).
She emphasized that the legalization of people’s ASGM is a must before providing any technological assistance to small-scale miners to ensure that their business is not illegal.
The GOLD-ISMIA Project is being implemented for five years since 2018 to 2023 in the districts of Kulon Progo in Yogyakarta Province, West Lombok in West Nusa Tenggara Province, and North Minahasa in North Sulawesi Province.
In addition, the project has been implemented in South Halmahera District, North Maluku Province; North Gorontalo District, Gorontalo Province; as well as Kuantan Singingi District, Riau Province.