New MAAP Report Shows Before and After Photos of Mining Raid in Venezuela

April 3, 2024

Last year,  in collaboration with the organization SOS Orinoco, we published an urgent report about illegal mining on top of a sacred tepui in the heart of Yapacana National Park in the Venezuelan Amazon (MAAP #169). These Tepuis are stunning table-top mountains found in northern South America and are considered sacred by indigenous groups of the region.

MAAP #169 documented 425 illegal mining data points (consisting of mining camps and machinery) on top of the tepui, indicating an organized and large-scale operation. Given the importance of this finding, the Washington Post published a high-profile article on the subject in December of 2022, further exposing the severity of the illegal mining on the tepui. In response, the Venezuelan government conducted a military operation against the illegal mining activity on the tepui.

Here, in MAAP #207, we show a series of very high-resolution satellite images taken during the raid (December 2022) versus one year later (January 2024). The images reveal that all illegal mining camps and equipment on top of the tepui have been dismantled.

While this removal of illegal mining activity from the tepui marks an important victory for Amazon conservation in Venezuela, we also show illegal mining continues in surrounding areas within and outside the Yapacana National Park.

Read the full report here.