Statement by Conservation International on Illegal Sapphire Mining in Madagascar
April 5, 2017
ARLINGTON, Va. (April 5, 2017) – Conservation International Senior Vice President and Managing Director of The Betty and Gordon Moore Center for Science Daniela Raik, Ph.D., made the following statement today on the sapphire mining crisis in Madagascar:
“Conservation International has worked in Madagascar for over 20 years, helping communities there protect nearly 400,000 acres of rainforest for the benefit of the people of Madagascar. The forest is home to approximately 325,000 people and provides services such as clean water, dependable food sources and sustainably harvested materials that millions of people depend on for their well-being. The illegal sapphire mining threatens these essential services by bringing deforestation and destruction and no meaningful benefit to the community. Much like other illegal activity elsewhere in the world, like the poaching of wildlife, this mining activity does not benefit the people Madagascar. They are only left with the destruction and depletion of their natural resources. Conservation International is committed to our work in this area and we are asking our partners in the government to step up their efforts to put an end to this illegal activity.”
About Conservation International
Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about Conservation International and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.