Minister seeks legislation on mining chemicals in Sudan
Sudan's Minister of Minerals made a plea for the use of safe chemicals in mining operations, and to ensure the regulation of traditional mining in accordance with international standards.
Minister Mohamed Ahmed El Karori called on the Sudanese Parliament to enact legislation, and benefit from the experience of leading countries that use cyanide in the gold extraction process.
Popular actions against the use of toxic substances in gold mining sites in northern Sudan and in South and North Kordofan, have been growing stronger. Cyanidation is the most commonly used technique for extracting gold from low-grade ore, but because of its highly toxic nature of cyanide the process is controversial and banned in a number of countries.
El Karori addressed a workshop on Monday, titled 'Alternatives to mercury and cyanide treatment in the mining process'. He said that Sudan's was able to produce seven tons of gold during the first quarter of this year. There are 361 registered mining companies; all of them use cyanide, Karori said.
The workshop concluded that legislation should be enacted to implement a national plan for the reduction of the use of mercury in the mining process, and seeking safe alternatives.
Yesterday the ministry and the Belarusian Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection signed a joint agreement on minerals investment and development. The five areas of cooperation include investments, environmental studies, laboratory development, legislative cooperation in the field and the introduction of new technologies.
During the cooperation environmental and technical studies would be developed to treat the waste in the conventional mining sector, said the Director-General of Geological Research Authority of Sudan.
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