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Environmental, Social and Health Impact Assessment (ESHIA) in Conflict-Affected DRC: ASM Specialist Study

Environmental, Social and Health Impact Assessment (ESHIA) in Conflict-Affected DRC: ASM Specialist Study


Client: Synergy Global Consulting Ltd.

Synergy Global Consulting commissioned Levin Sources to conduct a specialist artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) study for one of their clients which were in the process of developing a historic gold mine in the conflict-affected District of Ituri in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The project needed to consider the social and economic dynamics at play, the history of the region, and the current and potential conditions for conflict. It was part of the larger impact assessment and provided management options for the client.

Using fieldwork and secondary research, including statistical analysis of household census data, Levin Sources produced an ASM baseline of activities in the project area to take a strategic view on how the ASM sector was likely to impact the project and vice versa. This not only included an analysis of the history of ASM, including a history of ASM engagement by corporate mining entities but also the significance, scale, and scope of ASM, including geography, demography, and productivity. Levin Sources further assessed governance issues, levels of formality/legality, corruption, vested interests and the supply chain. Levin Sources also took an in-depth look at livelihoods, individual and household resiliency, income assessment, and viability of alternative livelihoods. Lastly, Levin Sources took into consideration the client’s compliance obligations, including voluntary standards to which it had committed.

The report gave the client the baseline data on the communities that could be affected as well as a situational analysis. Levin Sources developed a strategy to deal with the potential relocation of artisanal miners from within the concession, including alternative livelihood schemes and livelihoods restoration (i.e. resettling miners to other mine sites). The strategy included considering how to encourage and enable responsible mining practices at existing and new mining locations, including the applicability of national and international certification schemes for artisanal minerals.

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