The impact of small-scale mining activities on the environment: Examples from Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben and Otjinene select="/dri:document/dri:meta/dri:pageMeta/dri:metadata[@element='title']/node()"/>

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dc.contributor.author Chirchir, Isabella
dc.date.accessioned 2018-05-26T15:15:21Z
dc.date.available 2018-05-26T15:15:21Z
dc.date.issued 2017
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11070/2268
dc.description A mini thesis submitted in partial fulfilemnt of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Applied Geology en_US
dc.description.abstract This study explored the impact of small-scale mining activities on the environment in two regions in Namibia: Erongo (examples: Uis, Neu Schwaben, Xoboxobos) and Omaheke (example: Otjinene). Limited research is done on the activities of small-scale mining in Namibia which results in unavailability of data. Although recent studies reveal that about 5 000 to 10 000 Namibians work as small-scale miners, information about mining activities in Namibia remain a rare commodity. Small-scale miners mostly concentrate on commodities that are easily accessible and do not use mechanised equipment, i.e. tin, tantalum, calcrete and semi-precious stones (tourmaline, aquamarine, topaz, amethyst, garnet, rose and smoky quartz). This study was done through field observations, groundwater analysis and interviews/ questionnaires in order to determine the impact of small-scale mining activities on the environment. Groundwater was analysed for pH, oxidation-reduction-potential and conductivity to evaluate the quality of water. In addition, the study determined the possible environmental impact of small-scale mining activities on the lithosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere. Data from GROWAS Database was used to supplement the primary data. On the atmosphere, the dust generated by small-scale mining activities was found to be very minimal and thus, only affecting the miners through dust inhalation. This study did not find any evidence of identified impact on the hydrosphere (groundwater) close to the mining sites. The groundwater quality in Neu Schwaben and Uis were excellent based on the analysis done in the field on two boreholes close to the mining sites. The groundwater quality in Neu Schwaben and Otjinene were excellent, but unacceptable for Uis area based on the results from GROWAS database. No boreholes were found in Xoboxobos area. The impact of small scale mining activities at the four sites with regard to the lithosphere was land degradation. Neu Schwaben was the most affected amongst all the four sites observed. Small-scale miners indicated that SSM activities have a positive socio-economic impact through poverty alleviation and employment creation. Although the activities of small-scale miners have a positive impact on the lives of the miners and their families, the same have a negative impact on the environment. The study recommends the government to take an active role in providing mining equipment, training on mining safety, education of small-scale miners on the environment and land rehabilitation. The study further recommends awareness campaigns for small-scale miners in order to ensure that the impact on the environment remains minimal. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher University of Namibia en_US
dc.subject Mining activities en_US
dc.subject Environment en_US
dc.title The impact of small-scale mining activities on the environment: Examples from Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben and Otjinene en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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