The Underworld of Mercury Smuggling

Terry Soloman

Gold Member
May 28, 2010
19,397
29,985
White Plains, New York
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Detector(s) used
Nokta Makro Legend// Pulsedive// Minelab GPZ 7000// Vanquish 540// Minelab Pro Find 35// Dune Kraken Sandscoop// Grave Digger Tools Tombstone shovel & Sidekick digger// Bunk's Hermit Pick
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
Mercury is crucial to small-scale gold mining in South America but increasing scrutiny of its health and environmental impact in the Amazon is leading to its prohibition throughout the continent.This investigation delves into the underworld of mercury, following its path from Guyana to neighboring Suriname, exploring the health and environmental consequences, and what the prohibition of mercury would mean for the livelihoods of miners and communities across the Amazon.

 

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gold tramp

Bronze Member
Dec 30, 2012
1,379
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I have the same problem gold is so fine, it's near impossible to table off pure product, you have to either leach or amalgamations with Hg. Mercury is the cheapest way out..
If I couldn't use the stuff anymore I'd be out of the hardrock buissness...
Gt...
 

DizzyDigger

Gold Member
Dec 9, 2012
5,766
11,404
Concrete, WA
Detector(s) used
Nokta FoRs Gold, a Gold Cube, 2 Keene Sluices and Lord only knows how many pans....not to mention a load of other gear my wife still doesn't know about!
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
I have the same problem gold is so fine, it's near impossible to table off pure product, you have to either leach or amalgamations with Hg. Mercury is the cheapest way out..
If I couldn't use the stuff anymore I'd be out of the hardrock business...
Gt...

Herb, I think the big difference is that you're using it safely,
and down there in the 3rd world countries they may not know
how dangerous it can be, plus they leave too much of it in the
rivers.
 

gold tramp

Bronze Member
Dec 30, 2012
1,379
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Amalgam plate is probably the most wastefull method of recovery, imagine how much fine gold they don't get..

It's mining Mike somebody's got to do it, us bottom feeders get a lot of flak for our mining n milling techniques.
I'm sure they know it's bad but when you gotta buy groceries, and mining the only job in town, you gotta getter done..
Gt ..
 

Hard Prospector

Hero Member
Aug 29, 2012
974
1,385
SO CAL
Detector(s) used
SDC2300, Gold Monster, Sierra Gold Trac, GB2, the Falcon......and just as many drywashers
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
I've seen Herb's set up, legit and impressive for sure. They need to find a place for him on Discovery's Gold Rush series.
 

OwenT

Hero Member
Feb 11, 2015
572
857
Moses Lake WA & Provo UT
Primary Interest:
Prospecting
I've been watching a lot of Vice's little news documentaries. They do a great job I think and have a lot of interesting stories, especially about the developing world.

On the topic of mercury, do shaker tables compete with amalgamation for the super fine stuff? I saw a video of the guy from Baker Mining and Metals who I think makes equipment here in Washington go to Africa to help people use a shaker table to process their ore instead of mercury. Maybe making the equipment more available would help the contamination problem, however I also see they use it extensively in their wash plant, not only as a final cleanup tool.
 

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