In the midst of political and economic turmoil in this South American country, some of the world’s most scenic and biodiverse public lands are at risk. By Kim O’Connell
Two thousand hectares of Yapacana National Park’s surface is being subjected to gold mining activity, a case of extreme ecocide. The impact on its ecosystems manifests itself not only on the surface area that has been directly destroyed but also as the radial and expansive effects caused by the more than 2,000 miners currently occupying the national park. This makes Yapacana the national park that, without a doubt, has suffered the highest level of destruction.
Thanks to cooperation with Radiant Earth Foundation, SOSOrinoco got access to and analysis of recent (2018) open data from the European Union Sentinel 2 satellites and access and analysis of high resolution images of Yapacana National Park, courtesy of satellite image ©2018 DigitalGlobe, a Maxar company, that reveal the accelerated pace of devastation and deforestation due to illegal mining inside the park.