GEF Interventions in the Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining Sector

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) has a long history of investing in interventions to solve the environmental and health issues associated with the artisanal small-scale gold mining industry (ASGM). The signing of the Minamata Convention on Mercury in 2013 prompted an increased investment by GEF into the removal of mercury from human processes, including ASGM. GEF, which serves as a financial mechanism for several conventions including Minamata, began to invest in activities to help meet the goals of the Convention, such as creating inventories of mercury emissions in target countries, designing implementation plans and investing in technology to reduce and eliminate the use of mercury. In GEF-6, the planetGOLD Programme was formed, which is a $180 million, eight country initiative to strengthen institutions related to ASGM, promote investment opportunities and financial access for miners and introduce more efficient, mercury-free mining technologies. This evaluation assesses the entire GEF portfolio of ASGM initiatives, focusing on the sustainability of outcomes from completed projects and the relevance of the design of the planetGOLD Programme.