Identification and characterization of Peruvian native bacterial strains as bioremediation of Hgpolluted water and soils due to Artisanal and Small-Scale Gold Mining in the Secocha Annex, Arequipa!


The water and soils pollution due to mercury emissions from mining industries represents a serious environmental problem and continuous risk to human health. Among the 25 regions of Peru, three are responsible for more than 70 percent of the official gold production, La Libertad (29.6%), Cajamarca (25.9%) and Arequipa (15%). However, illegal mining in some Peruvian regions has been increasing. Secocha annex located in the Mariano Nicolás Valcárcel district in the Camaná province, Arequipa, has seen a tremendous boost activity due to the poor legislation on the use and type of land, which has caused informal settlements dedicated to mining. With gold reserves of narrow high-grade veins, where the width range of the vein is from 1 and 10 cm and its grades vary between 10 and 30 g/ton, this zone suffers the consequences of gold overexploitation and environmental mercury pollution.