Removal of barriers to the introduction of cleaner gold mining and extraction technologies
The Global Mercury Project (GMP) has been sponsored since August 2002 by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) as the Implementing Agency and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) as the Executing Agency. Locations for implementation of the GMP were selected on key trans-boundary river/lake basins in Brazil, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Sudan, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.
In Central Kalimantan, the gold town of Kereng Pangi was identified by the Government of Indonesia and UNIDO as a regional hotspot for mercury release. Around 5,000 people inhabit the surrounding goldfields in which artisanal miners produce over two tons of gold per annum. This small-scale, land-based mining activity has reduced the landscape of the study area to desert over an area of 200 square kilometers, through the removal of forests and topsoils.