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Gold mining and mercury – a time bomb in Amazon rain forest

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Gold mining Amazon_037.jpg
Final stage of the hydraulic gold mining process known as “chupadeira system”. Worker uses a butane torch to burn off the remaining mercury, leaving a shiny lump of gold in the botton of the pan. No precations taken to avoid skin contact with the mercury or to guard against inhaling the toxic fumes released in the process. Agua Branca mining village, Para State, Amazon rain forest, Brazil.