David Bote, Silveira House Officer.
The case in point is Mutoko district in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe, the main granite rock producing area in the country, where in community agency in mining, environmental conservation, and climate justice has been weak, and Silveira House sought to strengthen community agency. The project essentially targeted building and strengthening community advocacy capacity, and the establishment of an interactive platform between communities, local authorities , government agencies and mining companies . The interactive platform is geared towards establishment of reducing tensions, improve conflict management and to liaise on means about reducing harmful mining consequences.
In the process , several workshops were conducted and several structures set up. Afforestation activities involving the planting of trees in affected areas and raising awareness on climatic effects on the destroyed environment were done. Youths were also incorporated in key activities, particularly in terms of conscientising them about climate justice and the importance of safeguarding the environment.
One of the most enduring effects of mining is on the environment and the broader socio-economic activities of vulnerable communities. Despite many legal and policy
frameworks calling upon mining companies to operate within certain specifications, compliance levels especially in the context of Zimbabwe are poor. Mining operations
have largely destroyed biodiversity, caused excessive degradation of soils , water systems and ultimately livelihoods. Not only that mining activities have left communities more vulnerable to climatic disasters: particularly floods . The voice of communities in calling for mining companies to account for their harmful actions was hardly effective, and mining companies rarely took heed to the concerns of the surrounding communities.