Free Market-Based Solutions for Sustainable Mining in Ghana: Tackling the Galamsey Challenge

In Ghana, illegal mining, often known as “galamsey,” has become a significant issue with detrimental impacts on the environment and general public health. Gold mining occurs in several parts of the world, formally or informally. Most individuals lack the capacity to undertake formalized mining hence artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) is largely undertaken especially in Ghana due to it being a small-scale, often unacknowledged, primitive, and informal kind of mining. Ordinarily, ASM is praised for its socioeconomic benefits and criticized for its environmental destruction.

The impact of mining on the environment led to the banned of ASM in 2017 by the government in Ghana which subsequently formed a security taskforce and inter-ministerial committee on illegal mining (IMCIM) to crack down on indigenes who defy the ban. The IMCIM was dissolved in 2021 following scandals that hit the committee and the involvement of political actors in illegal mining operations in Ghana. 

The YAFO Institute seeks a free market-based solution that can resolve the problem of illegal mining or galamsey while fostering an environment that is safe, healthy, and sustainable for mining operations. In order to promote responsible mining operations, the event will host Dr. Albert Kobina Mensah (Ph.D.) to discuss viable solutions from a more scientific perspective. The objective is to advance workable, practical solutions that may be put into place to lessen the detrimental effects of galamsey on the environment and nearby communities. 

The event will explore how market incentives, like a better regulatory mining environment, property rights, and technical advancements, may encourage sustainable mining practices. The ultimate goal is to open discourse and promote group action in order to transform Ghana’s mining sector into one that is more responsible and sustainable.

About Speaker

Dr. Albert Kobina Mensah (Ph.D) holds a B.Sc. degree from the University of Cape Coast in Ghana, an M.Sc. from the Kenyatta University in Kenya and holds a Ph.D. from the Ruhr University Bochum, Germany. Albert is an environmental soil scientist by profession. He has published more than 25 refereed scientific articles in these areas and has more than 30 selected media and feature articles on better society and public policy. Albert has served as a reviewer in journals such as the Science of The Total Environment, Ecological Engineering, Agronomy, Sustainability and Africa Geographical Reviews. He has taught in Germany in mining and environmental protection. He has experience in public policy advocacy and has spoken on several media platforms in Ghana on better society and artisanal and small-scale mining sustainability.

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This event is sponsored by YAFO University. Supporting partners include Gallop Sea Ltd, Liberty International, Divine Economy Theory, Kingscel, Institute for Liberty and Economic Education, and Atlas Network.

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