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Centre for Environmental Rights – Advancing Environmental Rights in South Africa

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Environmental justice by advocating for better environmental laws and improved implementation of laws.

The environmental and socio-economic impact of mining on communities

The detrimental environmental impacts of mining on communities are both direct and indirect. Mining can lead to the loss of natural resources on which communities rely for their livelihoods and well-being, including water resources, agricultural land and important biodiversity. The pollution of the air, soil and water caused by mining furthermore results in pernicious impacts on the health of communities and the socio-demographic changes brought by mining can lead to social conflict. The industrialisation of a landscape through mining can also result in an impact on the psychological well-being of especially rural communities. Indirect impacts may include food insecurity and climate change impacts.

Visit the Mining and Environmental Justice Community Network of South Africa‘s page.

The videos below are illustrative of the struggles of mining-affected communities: