Ostensive and without limits over the last few years, the presence of 20,000 prospectors in the Yanomami Indigenous Land has altered reality even in other traditional territories.
The mining activity has reverberated beyond the Yanomami territory and is responsible for conflicts and diseases in the land of Macuxis and Wapishanas.
The activity of miners in the Yanomami land, in Roraima, the largest in Brazil, was so intense, especially in 2021 and 2022, that the effects went beyond the limits of the territory.
Folha's team has been to the Boqueirão Indigenous Land, in the Alto Alegre region, and found that mining activity had impacted life in the community. In Boqueirão live 520 indigenous people, mainly from the Macuxi ethnic group, but there are also Wapishana families.
Groups of miners began to settle, with the acceptance of Macuxi families, who were co-opted for activities related to mining. This fueled disagreements within the community.
Furthermore, the exploitation of gold and cassiterite has killed the Uraricoera River in such a way that the damage has reached the stretch used by the Macuxis and Wapishana for fishing. The water is muddy and the fish are gone.
The mining activity has also brought malaria to Boqueirão. There were frequent daily tests and no positive results. Now, there are 45 active cases.
Translated by Cassy Dias