We’re thrilled to announce our involvement in the Artisanal Mining Grand Challenge: The Amazon. The initiative helps support innovators, researchers and entrepreneurs from all over the world to develop and implement solutions that address the environmental and social costs of Artisanal and Small-scale Mining (ASGM) in the Amazon.
Out of 121 applicants, thirteen teams were selected and awarded funding to trial their innovations in-situ as part of the Amazon CoLab’s six-month accelerator program. SEM’s DRAM Filtration was one of the selected innovations to be funded for further field testing and advancement to protect the people and ecosystems in the Amazon.
ASGM accounts for 600 tonnes of gold, or around 15-20% of newly mined gold production. However, artisanal mining is unfortunately associated with hazardous working conditions, poor social practices and poses threat to our environment. But the industry is an important source of livelihoods – second only to agriculture in many developing countries.
The ASGM challenge was launched to find innovative solutions to transform the future of mining in the Amazon. Our DRAM Filtration technology will be trialled and tested in the field, with help from other local participants, to provide comprehensive treatment of contaminated effluents from ASGM activities. The technology will also provide a sustainable solution to metal recovery, including mercury, silver, copper and lead, that requires no use of harsh chemicals, minimal power requirements and mitigates the release of excessive carbon emissions.
Our Lead Scientist, Dr Leigh Cassidy, recently travelled to Peru to join the Amazon CoLab induction event with other participants, where various networking, case studies and solutions were discussed.
Commenting on the experience, she added: “Seeing the effects of illegal mining first hand in Peru really puts into perspective the need for adaptation on traditional methods. Meeting the other participants was an invaluable experience, learning about their innovations, whilst also discussing DRAMs potential, it gives me hope that we can collectively make real in roads to mitigating any further damage to the Amazon’s biodiverse ecosystem.”
Read more on the story here.
If you are interested in learning more about DRAM Filtration, please contact us.