Gold rush sparked by global financial crisis devastates Amazon

This aerial photo from Sept. 13, 2013 shows tailings produced by informal mining in Peru’s Madre de Dios region.

The ravaging of the Peruvian Amazon by a wave of illegal gold mining is twice as bad as researchers had thought.

That is according to a new study using groundbreaking technology that’s discovered thousands of previously undetected small mines in the Madre de Dios region of Peru, near the Bolivian border, a global biodiversity hotspot.

Thanks to its stunning wildlife, the region is home to various nature and indigenous reserves and dozens of thriving jungle lodges that welcome tourists from around the world.

Yet it’s also experienced widespread devastation since the 2008 global financial crisis saw gold prices rocket. Thousands of miners have flooded into the region, dredging riverbeds and carving up vast tracts of the forest floor in remotes areas beyond the reach of the authorities.

Read the full story here.

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About jensera

Jennifer Harrington is a Toronto-based illustrator, writer and graphic designer. She illustrated the best-selling children’s book series 'A Moose in a Maple Tree,' which includes the titles 'A Moose in a Maple Tree,' 'The Night Before a Canadian Christmas' and 'Canadian Jingle Bells.' She is also the owner of JSH Graphics, a boutique graphic design agency that specializes in print and web advertising. With her latest project, Eco Books 4 Kids, Jennifer has partnered with illustrator Michael Arnott to create a series of ecologically-themed ebooks for children. Her next book, 'Spirit Bear,' is due for release in the Summer of 2013. Jennifer offers two different school presentations for her 'Moose in a Maple Tree' collection, an illustration demonstration and a Christmas concert series, which can be booked at www.amooseinamapletree.com. She will be taking bookings for school readings of 'Spirit Bear' beginning in October 2013.

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