The anti-mining protest by over 3,000 villagers in Namkham, northern Shan State, on September 5, 2014, highlights the lack of protection against damaging mining, and the urgent need for a moratorium on resource extraction in ethnic areas until there isgenuine political reform and peace in Burma.
Since 2012, six companies have been mining silica inthe hills south-east of Namkham for export to
China. Large amounts of mining waste have been dumped in the Nam Siri Stream, which nine villages rely on for farming as well as domestic use. Thishas polluted and clogged the stream, causing it to overflow into nearby fields, destroying crops, irrigation channels and weirs. At least 100 acres of fields have been destroyed so far.