Batouri is located in the East region of Cameroon; geologically the area is made up of Pan African granitoids, which are the host rocks of gold mineralization. Batouri gold deposits have long been subjected to artisanal mining activities carried out by the indigenes for livelihood. Majority of the mining population (45%) is made up by youths (15-30 years), followed by the adults (35%) within the age range 46-60 years old. Adults within the age range 31-45 years constitute only about 5% of the mining population. Female artisans constitute 35% out of the total mining population and are involved in all the stages. The artisanal gold mining has caused damage on the environment which directly or indirectly affects the population. The standard of living of the miners in Batouri is still very poor giving rise to high rate of school drop outs, high rate of prostitution, poor hygienic conditions and health challenges. Artisanal gold mining is also very destructive to the environment causing severe deforestation; land degradation; destruction of the forest ecosystem. From these findings, it is recommended that the government re-enforce committees that will do a daily follow up of mining activities; train artisans on doing sustainable mining.
Key words: Batouri, socio-economic, environmental impact, artisanal gold mining.
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