Small scale and artisanal miners compliance to Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) requirements surged by over 50 percent following the softening of the guidelines implemented by the government this year.

Five months since the initiative to cushion small scale miners against the long process to obtain environmental impact assessment licences was effected, the level of compliance has surged significantly according to statistics by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA).

The high cost on environmental consultations hitting close to $5 000, had previously spooked miners forcing many to operate outside the formal system.

Authorities are confident that as more miners comply and become formalised this will boost the production yield for gold next year.

Environmental experts believe that monitoring the compliance will be critical to sustain the strides achieved in the industry.

A formalised small scale and artisanal mining sector will maintain the robust performance of the sector which outpaced large corporations in gold production this year after raking in 21 tonnes against 7 tonnes by large scale miners.