Rising gold prices reveal rising dangers in mining operations | CET News

Rising gold prices reveal rising dangers in mining operations

2019 has been a golden year for rising gold prices in many countries, but not, unfortunately, for the most innocent of reasons.

The Yonhap News Agency reports that trade difficulties between the United States and China have led to “outstanding performance” from pure gold in Korea’s market—the retail price of one unit of gold in Korea rose over 20% since 2018. This increase in price has been mirrored in other major countries as well.

The Perth Mint Bullion Blog proposes “elevated geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, equity market volatility and the prospect of even lower interest rates in Australia in 2020 are some of the many factors encouraging investors to allocate a portion of their portfolio to the precious metal.” For example, the start of 2020 has seen American and Australian markets rally behind gold. Per troy ounce (a unit of measure for weighing precious metals), gold costs were $1,600 and $2,300 respectively. The demand for Australian gold produced by the Perth Mint was up 45% from November – December 2019, and German sales of their gold increased 170% from 2018.

Because of the nature of gold’s inherent financial safety, the precious metal is in demand more than ever, and that means more of it will need to be mined. However, more gold mining activity, especially with the ways it is practiced today—toxic cyanide and mercury are the primary means with which gold is recovered—might cause more harm than good.

Miners must delve deeper and more dangerously for deposits of gold-rich ore, and tailings dam accidents and containment failures will continue to pollute soil and water supplies and endanger those who live nearby. Pocketbooks might be full, but the health of the environment, miners, and communities will continue to suffer. If more gold needs to be mined, it makes sense to have that gold mined in the safest way possible.

The award-winning, non-toxic solution owned by Clean Mining, a part of the Clean Earth Technologies group, could go a long way in mitigating, and possibly eliminating entirely, the harmful effects of current gold mining methods by completely replacing cyanide and mercury in gold processing. This non-toxic, scalable solution has also been proven to be a genuine answer for the mercury epidemic present in artisanal and small-scale gold mining.

*Source: Yonhap News Agency, Perth Mint Bullion Blog

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