Colombia’s profitable gold sector is fraught with illegal mining, threatening the country’s efforts to establish peace after decades of conflict.
Final Report: Colombia Artisanal Gold Mining – Environmental Impact Reduction Activity.
Project Report | May 31, 2021
This final report summarizes the approaches, achievements, and lessons learned from USAID’s Colombia Artisanal Gold Mining – Environmental Impact Reduction Activity (Oro Legal).
Oro Legal was a bold response to the governance and environmental challenges posed by artisanal and small gold mining (ASGM) in Colombia. Between September 2015 and April 2021, Oro Legal improved the social, economic, and environmental performance of ASGM operators through legalization and formalization and mitigated the environmental liabilities from past illegal mining. This final report examines how the activity supported livelihood alternatives for subsistence miners and those with no pathway to legalization. The strategy rested on close collaboration with government, communities, and mining companies and by negotiating the activity’s role as an “honest broker” to support responsible mining where technically, financially, and legally feasible.