Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Gold does not glitter after all

The only gold item I have is my wedding ring, a symbolic gesture of love and commitment from my wife. Had the ring not been given to me, it would not have made any difference whatsoever. I would have still loved her all the same and so would she. The ring though has made a difference somewhere and like this small ring gold is making a difference and most of us are unaware about it. Today most of the gold is used for making jewellery, something that we can easily not buy and make a difference. The gold ring that I wear has created about 20 tons of hazardous waste, most of which was probably dumped into the local rivers. The reason why gold is so toxic is because to get gold from ore, mining companies use a process called heap leaching. Gold containing ore is piled up into a heap and cyanide is poured over it. The cyanide slowly drips through, extracting the gold on its way. Along with gold, the cyanide also dissolved toxic metals like cadmium, lead and mercury. The cyanide and toxic metal ends up in a big pool of runoff, and from this pool, gold is extracted. The leftover cyanide and heavy metal mixture is then dumped into the local river and the cyanide containing heap of ore is just left behind. You probably are aware about cyanide, which is a deadly poison. One gram can kill a human and one-millionth of a gram can kill fish. The Aurul gold smelting plant at Baia mare in Romania, was spilling a hundred tonnes of cyanide-rich slurry into the Tisza river. When the dam on the banks of the Tisza river failed a wave of death swept from Romania into Hungary and onwards to the Danube killing fish and wildlife. Gold has become a part of many civil ceremonies and sometimes is difficult to forego it. Probably in such instances, it is prudent to use owned or recycled gold. Every piece of gold jewellery we own is a symbol of death and destruction of earth. Gold import is today crippling our current account deficit and is weakening our economy. However, for decades gold has been silently smothering Mother Nature and irreversibly weakening her. For ideas about clean gold visit www.nodirtygold.org

1 comment:

  1. Aarina10:24 am

    Indian Current Account Deficit can be controlled in other ways, that truly isn't a good enough reason. However, the destruction it causes is reason enough not to buy gold. How about gold being the only hedge in an uncertain economy?