‘River of Gold’ documents another threat to the Amazon: illegal gold mining

By: Sr. Rose Pacatte

As I write this review of the documentary film “River of Gold” the Amazon rainforest continues to burn. The fires of 2019 are reportedlyhuman in origin. They were most likely set to clear the land for grazing of beef for U.S. markets and beyond, and raising soybeans as crops and corn for feed.

But losing tens of thousands of acres of the rainforest per day is not the only threat to the Amazon River, the rainforest as a whole, or the nine countries that share it and the tributaries and headwaters of the river. Illegal and unregulated gold mining that destroys the rainforest and pollutes rivers and groundwater with mercury is a threat that is also driven by markets and greed. 

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