This study explored the impact of small-scale mining activities on the environment in two
regions in Namibia: Erongo (examples: Uis, Neu Schwaben, Xoboxobos) and Omaheke
(example: Otjinene). Limited research is done on the activities of small-scale mining in
Namibia which results in unavailability of data. Although recent studies reveal that about 5
000 to 10 000 Namibians work as small-scale miners, information about mining activities in
Namibia remain a rare commodity. Small-scale miners mostly concentrate on commodities
that are easily accessible and do not use mechanised equipment, i.e. tin, tantalum, calcrete
and semi-precious stones (tourmaline, aquamarine, topaz, amethyst, garnet, rose and smoky
This study was done through field observations, groundwater analysis and interviews/
questionnaires in order to determine the impact of small-scale mining activities on the
environment. Groundwater was analysed for pH, oxidation-reduction-potential and
conductivity to evaluate the quality of water. In addition, the study determined the possible
environmental impact of small-scale mining activities on the lithosphere, hydrosphere and
atmosphere. Data from GROWAS Database was used to supplement the primary data.
On the atmosphere, the dust generated by small-scale mining activities was found to be very
minimal and thus, only affecting the miners through dust inhalation. This study did not find
any evidence of identified impact on the hydrosphere (groundwater) close to the mining sites.
The groundwater quality in Neu Schwaben and Uis were excellent based on the analysis done
in the field on two boreholes close to the mining sites. The groundwater quality in Neu
Schwaben and Otjinene were excellent, but unacceptable for Uis area based on the results
from GROWAS database. No boreholes were found in Xoboxobos area. The impact of smallii
scale mining activities at the four sites with regard to the lithosphere was land degradation.
Neu Schwaben was the most affected amongst all the four sites observed.
Small-scale miners indicated that SSM activities have a positive socio-economic impact
through poverty alleviation and employment creation. Although the activities of small-scale
miners have a positive impact on the lives of the miners and their families, the same have a
negative impact on the environment. The study recommends the government to take an active
role in providing mining equipment, training on mining safety, education of small-scale
miners on the environment and land rehabilitation. The study further recommends awareness
campaigns for small-scale miners in order to ensure that the impact on the environment
SSA, R (2021). The Impact Of Small-Scale Mining Activities On The Environment: Examples From Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben And Otjinene.. Afribary.com: Retrieved May 13, 2021, from https://afribary.com/works/the-impact-of-small-scale-mining-activities-on-the-environment-examples-from-uis-xoboxobos-neu-schwaben-and-otjinene-1
Research, SSA. "The Impact Of Small-Scale Mining Activities On The Environment: Examples From Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben And Otjinene." Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 28 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/the-impact-of-small-scale-mining-activities-on-the-environment-examples-from-uis-xoboxobos-neu-schwaben-and-otjinene-1 . Accessed 13 May. 2021.
Research, SSA. "The Impact Of Small-Scale Mining Activities On The Environment: Examples From Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben And Otjinene.". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 28 Apr. 2021. Web. 13 May. 2021. < https://afribary.com/works/the-impact-of-small-scale-mining-activities-on-the-environment-examples-from-uis-xoboxobos-neu-schwaben-and-otjinene-1 >.
Research, SSA. "The Impact Of Small-Scale Mining Activities On The Environment: Examples From Uis, Xoboxobos, Neu Schwaben And Otjinene." Afribary.com (2021). Accessed May 13, 2021. https://afribary.com/works/the-impact-of-small-scale-mining-activities-on-the-environment-examples-from-uis-xoboxobos-neu-schwaben-and-otjinene-1