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Extractive Industries

Mercury Pollution and Artisanal Gold Mining in Alto Cauca, Colombia: Woman's Perception of Health and Environmental Impacts

Citation:

Vélez-Torres, Irene, Diana C. Vanegas, Eric S. McLamore, and Diana Hurtado. 2018. "Mercury Pollution and Artisanal Gold Mining in Alto Cauca, Colombia: Woman's Perception of Health and Environmental Impacts." The Journal of Environment and Development 27 (4): 415-44.

Authors: Irene Vélez-Torres, Diana C. Vanegas, Eric S. McLamore, Diana Hurtado

Abstract:

This article discusses the results of a pilot research strategy for monitoring environmental hazards derived from the use of mercury in artisanal gold mining in the Alto Cauca region, Colombia. During 2016 and 2017, a transdisciplinary approach was established to inquire on the health, environment, and territorial problems originated from artisanal mining. In this article, we specifically focus on how this particular issue affects women in the area. We establish a closed-loop approach for integrating social action research with analytical sciences/engineering to understand risks associated with Hg2+ levels in artisanal and small-scale gold mining in the Cauca department. We develop a platform known as closed-loop integration of social action and analytical chemistry research.

Keywords: contamination, Afro-descendants, sensors, cartography, CLISAR, artisanal gold mining (AGM)

Topics: Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Health Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Colombia

Year: 2018

Masculinities and Hydropower in India: A Feminist Political Ecology Perspective

Citation:

Shrestha, Gitta, Deepa Joshi, and Floriane Clement. 2019. "Masculinities and Hydropower in India: A Feminist Political Ecology Perspective." International Journal of the Commons 13 (1): 130-52.

Authors: Gitta Shrestha, Deepa Joshi, Floriane Clement

Abstract:

Mainstreaming gender in water governance through “how to do gender” toolkits has long been a development focus. It has been widely argued that such toolkits simplify the complex, nuanced realities of inequalities by gender in relation to water and fail to pay attention to the fact that the proposed users of such gender-water toolkits, i.e. mostly male water sector professionals, lack the skills, motivation and/or incentives to apply these toolkits in their everyday work. We adopt a feminist political ecology lens to analyse some of the barriers to reduce social inequalities in the management of global commons such as international rivers. Our findings highlight the leap of faith made in the belief that gender toolkits, as they exist, will filter through layers of a predominantly masculine institutional culture to enable change in ground realities of complex inequalities by gender. Analysing the everyday workings of two hydropower development organisations in India, we show how organisational structures demonstrate a blatant culture of masculinity. These two organisations, like many others, are sites where hierarchies and inequalities based on gender are produced, performed and reproduced. This performance of masculinity promotes and rewards a culture of technical pride in re-shaping nature, abiding by and maintaining hierarchy and demonstrating physical strength and emotional hardiness. In such a setting, paying attention to vulnerabilities, inequalities and disparities are incompatible objectives.

Keywords: feminist political ecology, gender, global commons, hydropower, masculinities, India

Topics: Development, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Political Economies Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2019

Do Women Have a Right to Mine?

Citation:

Lahiri-Dutt, Kuntala. 2019. "Do Women Have a Right to Mine?" Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 31 (1): 1-23. 

Author: Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt

Abstract:

FRENCH ABSTRACT: 
Dans le présent article, l’auteure soutient que l’approche fondée sur les droits, telle qu’appliquée dans le contexte minier, s’appuie sur une interprétation limitée du concept des femmes. Les femmes sont généralement pensées comme étant en dehors du secteur minier et comme des victimes de l’oppression patriarcale. Une vision aussi incomplète du genre va à l’encontre d’une perspective féministe qui est nécessairement holistique, tout comme elle est éclectique dans son traitement des problématiques touchant les femmes. Pour justifier cet argument, l’auteure discute des résultats de recherches-actions menées dans des mines de charbon en Indonésie et en Inde orientale. Elle démontre comment l’approche fondée sur les droits, lorsqu’elle s’appuie sur une conception incomplète du genre, aliène la figure de la femme qui, bien que travaillant comme citoyenne économique à l’intérieur du secteur minier, généralement tout au bas de l’échelle, n’en est pas moins asservie.
 
ENGLISH ABSTRACT: 
This article argues that the rights-based approach, as applied in the context of mining, is based on a limited interpretation of women; women are construed as being located outside of the mining industry and as victims of patriarchal oppression. Such an incomplete focus on gender is contrary to a feminist perspective that is necessarily holistic as well as eclectic in its treatment of women’s issues. To substantiate the argument, this article offers examples of action research from coal-mining contexts in Indonesia and eastern India to show that the rights-based approach, when conceived partially, alienates the figure of the woman who labours as an economic citizen within the mining industry, usually at the very bottom of its structural hierarchy, and who is usually no less subjugated.

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Livelihoods, Rights, Women's Rights

Year: 2019

Transformed Territories of Gendered Care Work in Ecuador’s Petroleum Circuit

Citation:

Cielo, Cristina, and Nancy Carrión Sarzosa. 2018. "Transformed Territories of Gendered Care Work in Ecuador's Petroleum Circuit." Conservation and Society 16 (1): 8-20.

Authors: Cristina Cielo, Nancy Carrión Sarzosa

Abstract:

This article explores the transformation of indigenous women’s care work in the Ecuadorian Amazon, as their communities are increasingly integrated into petroleum industry activities. Care work activities–not only for social reproduction, but also to sustain cycles of fertility, growth and waste interdependent with nature–constitute affective ecologies. In development sites of Ecuador’s petroleum circuit, such activities are domesticated and devalued, and the territories produced by women’s care work are progressively delimited. Once aimed at social and natural reproduction, their care practices now focus on household and familial reproduction. This article is based on two years of ethnographic and qualitative research in indigenous communities of the Amazonian provinces of Sucumbíos and Pastaza. We bring feminist economic approaches to the study of affective ecologies to show how fundamental changes in inhabitants’ historically shaped relationships to, and conservation of, nature both depend on and produce gendered ecological and socioeconomic relations.

Keywords: care work, petroleum, gender, territories, indigenous communities, Ecuador, Amazon

Topics: Economies, Environment, Extractive Industries, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Gender Analysis, Livelihoods Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Ecuador

Year: 2018

Resources and Resourcefulness: Gender, Human Rights and Resilience in Artisanal Mining Towns of Eastern Congo

Citation:

Perks, Rachel, Jocelyn Kelly, Stacie Constantian, and Phuong Pham. 2018. "Resources and Resourcefulness: Gender, Human Rights and Resilience in Artisanal Mining Towns of Eastern Congo." In Between the Plough and the Pick: Informal, Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining in the Contemporary World, edited by Kuntala Lahiri-Dutt, 209-32. Action, ACT: ANU Press.

Authors: Rachel Perks, Jocelyn Kelly, Stacie Contsantian, Phuong Pham

Annotation:

Summary: 
"Few things evoke reactions as passionate as issues surrounding gender, conflict and mining in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). At once reviled by international advocacy organisations and celebrated by local communities, mining is viewed as both the scourge and the saviour of a region wrecked by decades of violence. Studies have reported on human rights as well as on the status of women in the DRC, and although some examine the link between mining and sex-based violence, little research explores the gender dimensions of artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM). The research in this chapter was framed by questions such as: Do men and women face similar difficulties when seeking to gain employment in mining? Are they afforded similar opportunities once they have secured access into ASM? What are the most prevalent social, economic and health impacts experienced by individuals. Are these impacts gendered? A human rights–based approach informed the range of issues examined, such as gender, militarisation of the extraction process and free and equal participation in political, judicial and economic systems. By speaking with a wide variety of actors who live and work within these communities, we attempted to identify issues that are common to mining-affected areas. The experiences of both women and men were examined, but a particular focus remained on understanding women’s experiences in mining towns. Hence, the research was ultimately guided by the hypothesis that by understanding issues related to safety, security and economic opportunities for women, significant gains in both economic and social development in the eastern DRC could be achieved" (Perks et al. 2018, 209-10). 

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Gender Analysis, Rights, Human Rights Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2018

Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece

Citation:

Sjöstedt Landén, Angelika, and Marianna Fotaki. 2018. "Gender and Struggles for Equality in Mining Resistance Movements: Performing Critique against Neoliberal Capitalism in Sweden and Greece." Social Inclusion 6 (4): 25-35.

Authors: Angelika Sjöstedt Landén, Marianna Fotaki

Abstract:

This article explores the intersections of gender and centre–periphery relations and calls for theoretical and political involvement in gendered struggles against colonial and capitalist forces across different national contexts. The article raises questions about the possibility of resisting inequality and exploitation arising from capitalist expansion and extraction of natural resources in Sweden and Greece, outside of urban contexts. It does so by highlighting women’s role in protest movements in peripheral places and questioning power relations between centre and periphery. The article also argues that making visible women’s struggles and contributions to protest movements brings about vital knowledge for realizing democratic worlds that do not thrive on the destruction of natural resources and the institutionalization of inequalities.

Keywords: activism, capitalism, extractivism, gender, Greece, mining, neoliberalism, protest, women, sweden

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, intersectionality Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Greece, Sweden

Year: 2018

Ensuring Women Follow the Money: Gender Barriers in Extractive Industry Revenue Accountability in the Dominican Republic and Zambia

Citation:

Jayasinghe, Namalie, and Maria Ezpeleta. 2019. "Ensuring Women Follow the Money: Gender Barriers in Extractive Industry Revenue Accountability in the Dominican Republic and Zambia." The Extractive Industries and Society, April 15, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.exis.2019.04.003

Authors: Namalie Jasyasinghe, Maria Ezpeleta

Abstract:

Social accountability initiatives (SAIs) can be important to help push for oil, gas, and mining revenues to go to communities impacted by extractive industries (EI). Local investments in targeted services and programs can improve development outcomes and address negative impacts caused by EI. Ensuring that women and women’s rights organizations (WROs) are part of SAIs is likewise crucial, without which investments financed by EI revenues may not reflect the needs and interests of women, missing an opportunity to advance women’s rights and gender equality. This article shares preliminary results from a project that involves: (1) research exploring a women’s rights approach to SAIs on EI revenue transparency; and (2) program activities intended to foster joint agenda-setting between WROs and EI revenue transparency civil society organizations (EITCSOs) that distinctly focus on advancing women’s rights. Initial findings suggest that addressing structural barriers to women’s participation, such as socio-cultural norms, women’s lack of ownership of land and resources, gender-insensitive consultation processes, inaccessibility of information, and women’s lack of awareness of their rights, in SAIs related to EI revenue transparency could improve women’s agency. Through this project, WROs and EITCSOs are building advocacy agendas that respond to these barriers to promote women’s rights.

Keywords: gender, women's rights organizations, social accountability, revenue, extractive industries, Dominican Republic, Zambia, transparency

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Discourses, International Organizations, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, East Africa, Americas, Caribbean countries Countries: Dominican Republic, Zambia

Year: 2019

Female Faces in Informal ‘Spaces’: Women and Artisanal and Small-scale Mining in Sub-Saharan Africa

Citation:

Hilson, Gavin, Abigail Hilson, Agatha Siwale, and Roy Maconachie. 2018. "Female Faces in Informal 'Spaces': Women and Artisanal and Small-scale Mining in Sub-Saharan Africa." Africa Journal of Management 4 (3): 306-46.

Authors: Gavin Hilson, Abigail Hilson, Agatha Siwale, Roy Maconachie

Abstract:

This paper critically examines how women employed in artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) – low-tech mineral extraction and processing – in sub-Saharan Africa could be affected by moves made to formalize and support their activities under the Africa Mining Vision (AMV), ‘Africa’s own response to tackling the paradox of great mineral wealth existing side by side with pervasive poverty’. One of the main goals of the AMV is Boosting Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining, which requires signatories to devise strategies for ‘Harnessing the potential of small scale mining to improve rural livelihoods and integration into the rural and national economy’. Moves being made to achieve this, however, could have an adverse impact on many of the women working in ASM in sub-Saharan Africa. Findings from the literature and research being undertaken by the authors in Sierra Leone and Zambia suggest that whilst most women engaged in ASM in the region work informally and, as a result, face very challenging circumstances daily, many have adapted to their surroundings and now earn far more money than they would from any other income-earning activity. Governments must study these dynamics before taking action under the auspices of the AMV to formalize and support women in ASM.

Keywords: artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM), Sub-Saharan Africa, informal sector, women, poverty

Topics: Economies, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Governance, Livelihoods Regions: Africa

Year: 2018

Remasculinization and Mobilities in a Reindustrializing Community in Northern Norway

Citation:

Valestrand, Halldis. 2018. "Remasculinization and Mobilities in a Reindustrializing Community in Northern Norway." Gender, Place & Culture 25 (8): 1121-37.

Author: Halldis Valestrand

Abstract:

In this article I explore how certain aspects of mobility, especially commuting, became predominant in the construction of a dominant ‘place-story’ in a municipality in Northern Norway (Nord-Norge), and claim that this stepped up a remasculinization process in the community. This former male-dominated mining community had undergone an extensive economic and social restructuration process since the 1990s, which had resulted in a much more varied job market, but equally importantly a strengthened situation for women, occasionally phrased as a feminization of the municipality. From 2009, a reindustrialization process mainly based on natural resources was underway, but according to private business interests, its further growth and development was dependent on attracting skilled labour, which was a new situation in a region that had struggled to keep its inhabitant numbers. A place-story was emerging in which increased work-related commuting evidently disturbed the local conception of this community as a stable place. By looking closer at the background to how this story came about, and the circumstances in which it was constructed, I focus on both a controversial commuting issue and other work-related mobilities that did not seem to cause the same attention. My conclusion is that the commuter issue reinforced a remasculinization process in the community.

Keywords: reindustrialization, remasculinization, mining town, place-stories, work-related mobilities

Topics: Development, Economies, Extractive Industries, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Infrastructure, Transportation, Livelihoods Regions: Europe, Nordic states, Northern Europe Countries: Norway

Year: 2018

Women’s Status and Carbon Dioxide Emissions: A Quantitative Cross-National Analysis

Citation:

Ergas, Christina, and Richard York. 2012. “Women’s Status and Carbon Dioxide Emissions: A Quantitative Cross-National Analysis.” Social Science Research 41 (4): 965–76.

Authors: Christina Ergas, Richard York

Abstract:

Global climate change is one of the most severe problems facing societies around the world. Very few assessments of the social forces that influence greenhouse gas emissions have examined gender inequality. Empirical research suggests that women are more likely than men to support environmental protection. Various strands of feminist theory suggest that this is due to women’s traditional roles as caregivers, subsistence food producers, water and fuelwood collectors, and reproducers of human life. Other theorists argue that women’s status and environmental protection are linked because the exploitation of women and the exploitation of nature are interconnected processes. For these theoretical and empirical reasons, we hypothesize that in societies with greater gender equality there will be relatively lower impacts on the environment, controlling for other factors. We test this hypothesis using quantitative analysis of cross-national data, focusing on the connection between women’s political status and CO2 emissions per capita. We find that CO2 emissions per capita are lower in nations where women have higher political status, controlling for GDP per capita, urbanization, industrialization, militarization, world-system position, foreign direct investment, the age dependency ratio, and level of democracy. This finding suggests that efforts to improve gender equality around the world may work synergistically with efforts to curtail global climate change and environmental degradation more generally.

Keywords: gender and environment, women's status, carbon dioxide emissions

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Extractive Industries, Feminisms, Gender, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Political Participation

Year: 2012

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