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Play now 25 mins

Peru's Gold Rush

Duration:
25 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 12 July 2012

Poor farmers are flocking to the Peruvian Amazon in the hope of striking it rich as gold miners.

They are being lured by the record prices gold has reached in the last few years.

But illegal mining is causing massive mercury pollution and depleting forests in one of the world's most bio-diverse regions.

For Assignment, Rob Walker heads into the rainforest to see whether the tough new measures the Peruvian government has introduced to control the miners are working.

Assignment producer: Alicia Trujillo

(Image: A nugget of gold)

  • Peru's gold rush pits illegal miners against government

    Peru's gold rush pits illegal miners against government

    "Since mining started with machines, the gold miners have made holes in the forest. So the animals have run and gone to other places. Our fear is that the forest will disappear"

    Read more on the BBC News website

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