True World Intelligence News (TWIN)

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BBC: How mercury poisons gold miners and enters the food chain

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About 15% of the world’s gold is produced by artisanal and small-scale miners, most of whom use mercury to extract it from the earth. In Indonesia, the industry supports some three million people – but the miners risk poisoning themselves, their children and the land.

Fahrul Raji, a man in his early 30s, is not feeling well. At the health centre in Kereng Pangi, a town in Central Kalimantan surrounded by goldfields, he explains his symptoms.

“I often have a headache, and I am weak. I have a bitter taste in my mouth.”

Mercury is a neuro-toxin,” Bose-O’Reilly explains. “It affects the cerebellum,
which is the part of the brain that helps you move properly, and co-ordinate
your movements. Mercury also harms the kidneys and other organs, but the
neurological damage it does is irreversible.”


Written by voiceoftruthusa

September 18, 2013 at 4:25 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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