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Illegal gold mines in the Philippines. The Philippines has the largest copper gold deposits in the world and is the fifth most mineral rich country for gold, nickel, copper and chromite. For a few months back, the Philippine government has taken steps to put an end to the mines that, according to environmental minister Gina Lopez, pose a threat to the environment. Already 23 of the 41 major mines have been forced to permanently shut down and even thousands of small-scale mines working without official permission have been ordered to close, a decision that affects 1.2 million Filipinos working in the mining industry. For the smaller mines, the government’s decision has had devastating consequences. So instead of closing down the business, many of the smaller mines have chosen to move farther into the jungle and still carry on their business, but now illegally and in the dark.

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