Property Rights and Artisanal Diamond Development, Africa
Artisanal miners labor under archaic and difficult working conditions and live in extreme poverty, often receiving less than 9 percent of the retail price of the stones they extract. Diamond extraction causes severe environmental degradation. The Property Rights and Artisanal Diamond Development Project (PRADD II)—a joint U.S. Agency for International Development and European Union initiative—helps governments to implement diamond mining best practices in Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea. It also promotes good governance at the international level through the Kimberley Process, an international mechanism that prevents rough diamonds from fueling conflict.
PRADD II aims to increase the number of alluvial diamonds entering into the formal chain of custody, while improving the benefits accruing to diamond mining communities. The program is a follow-on to work implemented in Central African Republic, Guinea, and Liberia from 2008 to 2013.
Tetra Tech is basing its approach on the premise that secure property rights create positive incentives for miners to be good stewards of the land. When an artisanal miner’s rights to prospect and dig for diamonds are formalized and secure, he is more likely to sell through legal channels, enabling the government to track the origin of diamonds and prevent them from fueling conflict.
Under PRADD II, Tetra Tech is:
- Strengthening the diamond value chain by designing alternative systems of financing, equipment procurement, and marketing
- Introducing complementary livelihoods, including rejuvenating exhausted mining sites into spaces for productive agricultural activities
- Encouraging women and rural populations to adopt alternative livelihoods in an effort to mitigate the environmental damages of artisanal mining while also providing income and food security
- Helping African governments to improve diamond mining policy, legislation, and administrative regulations; for example, in 2013 the project produced the Washington Declaration Diagnostic Framework, which helps diamond-producing states translate international best mining practices into action
- Using communication tools to mobilize civil society groups and change the views and behavior of artisanal miners and decision makers in regard to diamond production and commercialization
- Encouraging a diamond economy that will be a powerful tool for development and an artisanal mining industry that could contribute to national economies and the well-being of local communities and miners
- Introducing the policy and knowledge base needed to help the diamond economy contribute to local communities in new ways
Read our success story on Strengthening Women's Property Rights in Tortiya through Mining Site Rehabilitation.
View the following video to learn more about PRADD II.