Gold mining in Ghana has gained unprecedented worldwide recognition. The mining sector has played a key role in the socio- economic development of the country. Despite these gains, gold mining has over the years contributed to ad-verse problems that have affected livelihoods of rural dwellers. In order to eke out a living, local communities need to construct livelihoods by espousing livelihoods strategies/ coping mechanisms. Through a case study of Newmont Ghana’s Ahafo South mining project this research paper tries to explore the impact of mining (both large scale and artisanal) on the livelihoods of local communities and the coping mechanisms/livelihood strategies adopted to minimize adverse impacts. To achieve this, the study drew on both the sustainable livelihoods framework and the concept of land tenure to critically analyze the specific research questions on impact of mining, emerging livelihood strategies/outcomes and mining politics. Findings from the study indicate that, gold mining presents a paradox: generally, the national economy benefits in terms of royalties, revenues and taxes which are used for overall developmental projects whereas at the local level, communities are saddled with adverse social and environmental problems which have deprived them of their main source of livelihood: land and natural resources. This necessitated the emergence of alternative livelihood strategies; diversification into off- farm income earning activities such as artisanal mining and migration to close by villages to seek for farm lands as a survival strategy. However, politics has been identified as a key driver of mining issues at the local level. This demonstrates the power dynamics of who gets what, when and how at the local level as the more powerful actors have an edge over the weaker actors.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Mining, Mining Concessions, Newmont Ghana, Livelihoods, Livelihood strategies and outcomes, Local Communities
Thesis Advisor Buscher, Bram
Persistent URL
Series Environment and Sustainable Development (ESD)
Yaro, Irene Jemilatu. (2010, December 17). The Impact of Mining on Livelihoods of Local Communities : A Case Study of Newmont Ahafo South Mining Pro-ject of Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana. Environment and Sustainable Development (ESD). Retrieved from