Bloomberg has a devastating in-depth look at the impact of gold mining in a small town in Colombia called Segovia where "almost 100 shops refine the gold that prospectors bring down from the foothills of the Andes Mountains":
With the price of gold reaching a record last year, Segovia is a boomtown in the 19th century style, with casinos and brothels squeezed between mining businesses along its main streets. It’s also likely one of the most poisonous towns in the world. That’s because the cheapest, easiest way for miners to refine gold is to mix it with a potentially lethal agent: mercury, aka quicksilver.
Continue reading Gold Boom Spreading Mercury as 15 Million Miners Exposed.