Solutions for ASM in protected areas and critical ecosystems.

ASM and the Environment

Solutions for ASM in protected areas and critical ecosystems.

Artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) is occurring in or impacting a wide range of critical ecosystems, including arctic landscapes, tropical rainforests, and coral reefs. ELL recognizes the risks that ASM poses to our natural environment and aims to reduce the ecological and social damage caused by ASM, whilst building on ASM’s economic, development potential.  We help our clients seek win-win solutions to turn the conservation – development trade-off posed by ASM in biodiversity hotspots into an opportunity for enhancing local and global resilience.

We work with funders, conservationists, development agencies, governments, and interested businesses to better understand the challenges of ASM in protected areas and critical ecosystems and to seek solutions to address these challenges.  We leverage our mapping capabilities and build on a scientific foundation of knowledge, participatory methods and rights-based approaches to properly understand the issues and develop appropriate management responses. This can include: policy approaches such as eviction, negotiated access, and de-gazettement strategies; technical approaches including introduction of  responsible mining techniques and frugal rehabilitation/reclamation; market-based  supply chain strategies and incentives; and alternative or integrated livelihoods development.

We started this journey by partnering with the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) to launch the ASM-PACE Programme in 2010.  Over the course of three years, we researched the challenges and potential solutions, including developing a Global Solutions Study and a Methodological Toolkit, as well as conducting our own field research in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Gabon, Liberia, and Madagascar. We are now working with a broader network of experts and organisations to effect meaningful change in a range of countries across the world.  We have partnered with and/or carried out work on behalf of conservation organisations such as Fauna and Flora International (FFI), the African Biodiversity Collaborative Group, and the Arcus Foundation.  We support this area of development in collaboration with WWF and other conservation organisations and through our own projects and activities.

For more information on the ASM-PACE Programme, its funders, findings and activities, please visit our website dedicated to this issue Asm-Pace