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30 Nov 2015

Alina Dieste

Colombia: La Llanada gold mines certified as ethical & environmentally friendly by Fairmined

"Clean mining yields 'green gold' in Colombia"

Gold… mining can be a dirty, bloody business, but a village in Colombia has been rewarded for an ethical model - producing clean "green gold" which has seduced big international jewelers… The La Llanada operations were certified in October by Fairmined, an international body that certifies ethical mining practices. That opened the way for it to sell its gold to international companies… "It… is a sustainable model that benefits people as well as nature… If there is an international market that is much better for us, because the miners will be able to sell their gold at a better price."… The La Llanada mines have also been certified as an environmentally friendly operation, which avoids using toxic chemicals… [Through] a strongly community-based, small-scale production system, the locals here have avoided extortion and kidnappings by armed groups and competition from big firms… The Fairmined standard was developed by the Alliance for Responsible Mining… It sets environmental and labor norms and ensures that production benefits local communities.