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How to get gold in Mongolia: black diggers

Many gold mining companies will alter the natural landscape of Mongolia. The extraction of gold disappear hundreds of rivers and lakes, and the Mongolia slowly turning into a desert.

In addition to the official production companies from Russia, Japan, China (from 23 countries), the main problem are the “black diggers”. They are called “ninjas” because of their appearance: they wear behind green metal pots, which are similar to heroes of the popular cartoon about the ninja turtles. Pictures of David gray, Reuters.

First, this “underground” activity in Mongolia was engaged in migrant workers from China, but after some time of this “economic niches” they were replaced by the Mongols themselves. Traditional Mongolian tent:

According to various estimates environmentalists, more than 100 thousand people in Mongolia are engaged in illegal gold mining. Photo: old Russian van production on someone’s yard:

Basically, they are former shepherds who long ago gave up traditional occupation, have sold all their cattle and went into “black diggers” — have engaged in illegal gold mining.

Here they are, digging pits to the South-West of Ulan Bator:

“Black diggers” with their families following formal gold mining companies, digging in the dumps on the sites of former industrial razrabotki manually wash gold:

Here, adults are engaged in this criminal business, and children not enrolled in school:

Why Mongolia is turning to desert . Because gold mining in the upper reaches of the rivers here disappear hundreds of lakes and ponds. For example, in 2007, a Chinese firm incorrectly designed hydroelectric power station, resulting in the dam completely blocked the river. Later on hundreds of miles below this dam the river was completely dried up. In Mongolia had already disappeared around 950 small rivers.

Standard working place of “black digger”:

Recently in Mongolia, the cases of birth of children with various pathologies. This is attributed to the fact that industrial companies in the gold mining used toxic substances such as mercury, potassium cyanide, etc. Following on the heels of “black diggers” dig for these poisoned areas.

During the screes people often die.

“Black diggers” are always behind such green metal basins:

Because of this, they are called “ninja” in honor of the TMNT cartoon of the same name.

In river valleys, where it is possible to conduct illegal production, formed a huge settlement. Families with children are crawling along rivers and streams, digging in the ground.

In these settlements has its own “infrastructure” — Commerce, the service (repairs, hairdressing), entertainment, usually associated with alcohol.

Mined gold along with the dirt is filled in such cages:

Overall, the production is not the most technological:

Determination of the purity of the gold at the plant North of Ulan Bator:

Picking up crumbs under the official gold miners, “black diggers” in Mongolia is mined, according to various estimates, up to 5-6 tonnes of gold per year.

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