tv Global 3000 PBS September 19, 2015 12:30am-1:01am PDT
host: hello and welcome to "global 3000." when you pick up your mobile phone to tweet, check your emails or even make the odd phone call, do you ever wonder what makes our phones so smart? the raw materials needed are often mined under slave like conditions. today we head to eastern congo to learn more. and here's what else is coming up. not for sale. how farmers in paraguay are fighting to keep their land. cold milk in a hot place. how to keep a cow happy in the desert. and, safe streets.
meet the outreach workers trying to reduce violence in baltimore. how many smart phones, tablets, and other gadgets have you gone through in recent years? each of them would have contained gold or coltan. mined in the democratic republic of the congo, they should have long made the country very rich by now. instead the wealth is often used to fuel local and regional conflicts. our reporters adrian kriesch and jan-phillipp scholz traveled to the region. they learned that u.n. attempts to end the exploitation of miners is proving an uphill struggle. reporter: delphe kashabira has spent the entire night underground looking for gold, from 6:00 in the evening until 7:00 in the morning. that's a normal working day for him. the gold rush drew him to this mine in the eastern congolese province of south kivu eight
years ago. delphe: of course it's dangerous. we do prop up the shaft, but stones still sometimes fall down from above. we also have to be very careful not to injure ourselves in the dark. and the further down you go, the harder it is to breathe. oxygen is in short supply. at times you really have to gasp for breath. reporter: kashabira and the other workers here practice what's called artisanal mining. the work with hand tools on a small scale. in the hard-to-reach mountains in the eastern democratic republic of the congo, almost half the mining of minerals is done this way. the problem, however, is that many of these mines are controlled by armed rebels. and that means the miners work under conditions that amount to slavery.
for a good three years, the united nations, in cooperation with international partners, has been sending inspectors to the mines. the idea: mines not controlled by militias are certified "conflict-free." that way, international companies can prove their minerals haven't helped finance rebel wars. the nyamurale mine is expected to get its certificate in the coming months. sheriff dialo: the process of certifying a mine site -- it takes long, the process. first we have to make sure there are no armed groups, that there's no uncontrolled element of the military. so this mine site, in march of 2013, there were a lot of military incursions. but i am work with the military in the region. this mine site was demilitarized in march of 2013. reporter: to date, however, that's true of very few of the estimated 2000 small mines in the eastern drc. and no one knows how many of them are controlled by rebel groups like the fdlr, the
democratic forces for the liberation of rwanda. that rebel group originally comes from the neighboring country of rwanda and is considered one of the most brutal militias in the region. a worker from an fdlr-controlled mine is willing to speak to us. >> the worst things are the murders and rapes. it's purely arbitrary. they take what they want when they want it. and they kill whenever they want to. reporter: later in the interview he also tells us that fdlr ringleaders had made him a foreman in the mine. he had to help them collect gold from the workers. it's hard to distinguish between victims and culprits, even for the un, which has tried in vain for 16 years to restore peace to the eastern drc. but one thing is clear: many of the profiteers are based abroad. we travel to the neighboring
country of uganda, which is where many of the illegal mineral deals are made. in the capital kampala, we meet someone who knows the business very well. she brings sellers and buyers together, customers who are willing to seal lucrative deals over the conflict commodities from the drc. >> some are serious businessmen who see an opportunity for quick money, because the resale of gold is very high once the gold is brought in. so others just want to do this once in a lifetime venture and go back to whatever business they're doing. then others are in the habit of buying and trading gold just like that. reporter: she says getting fake guarantees of origin for the gold and other mineral resources is rarely a problem and that, with the right contacts in the ministries and enough money for bribes, anything's possible. many of her customers come from asia and europe.
>> they are just doing business. some of them are caught in that kind of business. and they know congo is a failed state. you can't police them abroad. somebody's going to get hurt. where is this money going? whose gold is it? it's very hard, all these want to do business, and at the end of the day, congo has all the material they need for their business. reporter: the main criticism of the certification project is that it's unrealistic, that the rampant corruption in the region means even wrongly-certified resources make it onto the world market with official approval. in addition, critics say that in the eastern drc, only about a hundred mines have been certified conflict-free so far. they add that it makes things unnecessarily hard for workers in the many small mines that aren't on the international monitors' lists. mine worker delphe kashabira doesn't consider those reasons not to try. he says he's seen with his own eyes how certification can help him and his fellow miners.
delphe: mining has become more difficult here recently, because we have to dig deeper into the earth to find gold. but our working conditions have improved a lot. reporter: after the long working day, kashabira and his co-workers have to wash their stones. it's the moment of truth, because only now can they see if there's really gold in them. today wasn't an especially productive one for the workers. but at least here the foreman is no longer a rebel who will take their hard-earned gold away from them. host: paraguay is part of what some refer to as the south american soy belt, composed of monoculture farms stretching across several countries. now soy fields, much of this used to be forest. in paraguay it's subsistence
farmers who are largely paying the price for this large scale agriculture. exploited land and razed forests deprive them of the chance to make a living. many move to the city where they often end up impoverished. now an initiative is trying to help those who are determined to stay on their land. reporter: life on the side of a road, an hour's drive from asuncion, the capital of paraguay. those who end up here have no choice. they're indigenous families, forced from their homes which were located deep into the country's interior. >> we have no land. we have no land to go to. if we did, we could get away from here. reporter: agronomist miguel lovera is familiar with their
problems. until a few years ago he was head of the country's environment agency, senave. now he works for an ngo, called global forest coalition. miguel: this is like a refugee camp. they've lost their homes, their forest. that's why they live in these conditions. in the past, you very rarely saw native paraguayans who were undernourished. they got their food, their medicine, everything, from the forest. but without their forest, they've lost everything. reporter: in the past 50 years, 2/3 of the forestland in paraguay has been clear-cut. instead there are now huge soybean, maize and cotton fields, most of them owned by agricultural multinationals. the district of minga pora in the east of the country: 40% of
the farmers have left here. but jeronimo arevalos and his family don't want to give up their home. jeronimo: we're not opposed to large-scale agricultural production, but we are against the poisoning and disappearance of our communities. we're fighting to be able to create viable living conditions for our families. reporter: that's why the families have organized their own water supply. jeronimo: look at this, for example: water comes from over here, and over there, from another source. we channel these two sources together to generate power, and this machine pumps the water into a tank that holds 15000 liters. it fills up, for free.
it doesn't cost a thing and it's enough for 17 families. they can water their gardens and even cook with it, because it's clean and uncontaminated. reporter: clean water is a rarity in paraguay. many rivers are already polluted, although they're fed by a huge fresh-water reservoir, the guarani aquifer, deep under the earth. it's four times the size of italy. despite the fresh water from underground, the rivers aren't doing well. miguel: in the rivers around here, there's very little fauna, very few amphibians, very few frogs, because they're extremely sensitive to agrochemicals. lots of herbicides, insecticides and fungicides are used in agriculture here, and the situation is very bad for the
biodiversity. that is to say, what's left of it. reporter: in asuncion, the capital of paraguay: the global forest coalition also works with subsistence farmers. a national workshop is intended to motivate them to continue their fight against the sellout of their country. miguel: myth number one: all is lost. that's not true. your communities demonstrate that. yes, it's difficult, because we're trying to save our country and our natural environment. that's what you are working for every day. reporter: the international climate initiative supports more than just the environmental organizations and farmers in paraguay. it also supports communities in 19 other countries in their
efforts to protect the environment. miguel lovera is on his way to the arevalos family. he always has terere tea with him, the cold version of mate, an old tradition among indigenous guarani. lovera helps the families preserve their land and cultivate it ecologically. this time he's brought plants for the farmers. in guarani, the indigenous language, he explains what he's brought them -- carambolas, cherry trees, and macadamias. these plants are new here in paraguay's hinterlands. they're still unfamiliar to the farmers. but soon they could help them
increase their yields. the family's garden is cultivated entirely without fertilizer. instead, the farmers rely traditional knowledge. miguel: we have lots of different plants that are generally viewed as weeds, even though they're not harmful. they protect the soil, help preserve moisture and repel insects. and they're effective. reporter: jeronimo arevalos and his family have been able to make ends meet so far. he doesn't want to leave his land. miguel lovera considers him a role model. miguel: this is his place. that's not something you sell. you take care of it, make it better, nurture it. and that's what these people in the district of minga pora are doing.
host: here's a question for you: where can you find the world's biggest cowshed? not one person i've asked has guessed correctly. that could be because it's in saudi arabia, of all places. smack in the middle of the desert. and while the saudis can import the cows, their pastures are in far flung places like the u.s. that's where much of the feed comes from. here's a closer look at saudi arabia's answer to rising demand in dairy products. it's very modern and most of all requires one resource -- plenty of water. host: riyadh. concrete, steel, and glass adorn the capital of saudi arabia, one of the richest countries in the world. camels, the main means of transportation until a few decades ago, command deep respect.
nothing embodies saudi arabia as much as its dust-dry, blistering hot expanses. but there are exceptions. we're visiting al safi dairy farm, right in the middle of the desert. much as its dust-dry, blistering hot expanses. first we go into one of the seven milking units: water on the floor, water on the walls, water in the air. in saudi arabia, everything is a bit larger than in the rest of the world. in huge halls, hundreds of descendents of german holstein cows are being milked simultaneously. mohammed: around from 30 to 40 staff per one unit. maybe around from 20 to 22. how many hours? about 22 hours, only two hours for break, one for lunch and another for dinner. reporter: for the milk from the desert, fodder is imported from all over the world, including cornflakes imported from the u.s.
the various multi-colored ingredients are then, with scientific support and augmentation, ground into a greenish mash in gigantic tubs. nothing is left to chance, because if fodder isn't delivered or no water is available for even one day, most of the animals would die. tariq: we have, i think, 50,000 cows -- total cows. we have also about 10,000 hectare for crops production. we are producing about 800,000 liter every day, and our yield is about 41 liters per cow per day. reporter: a typical saudi cowshed is 500 meters long and has room for 1500 cows. incredible but true. milking takes place four times a
day, and what comes out in the end is enough to make you giddy -- not the milk's quality, but the sheer amount: nearly a million liters a day. we're in what's by far the world's largest integrated dairy farm, a guinness record. at temperatures above 27 degrees celsius, water automatically sprays over the animals. otherwise they'd die of heat stroke. in summer, the bovine sprinkler system operates almost around the clock. who would have imagined the world's largest dairy would be found in saudi arabia, of all places? each of the 50,000 cows has a chip in its ear. every drop of milk is monitored. the managers know just how many liter each cow produces per day, per week and per month. the frontrunner supplies nearly 70 liters a day!
in saudi arabia, the term factory farming takes on a whole new dimension. in each of the seven units, there's a nursery. on an average day, the farmers deliver about 60 calves. an where water consumption is concerned, it's not the calves who gulp, it's the visitors. producing one liter of desert milk consumes more than 2000 liters of water. and that is not a record to be proud of. host: i guess it won't surprise you to hear that riyadh also has an indoor ski slope. thought so. "stop shooting, start living" -- that's the slogan outreach workers in the u.s. city of baltimore have printed on their t-shirts. and they speak from personal experience. after all, baltimore is considered one of the most dangerous cities in the united states. with authorities offering online updates on how many days there hasn't been a violent incident
on certain street corners considered as "hot spots". children grow up in an environment where no violence is the exception not the rule. we talk to those who are working hard to change this for future generations. reporter: in the past, dante barksdale spent very little time with his mother and his nieces. instead, he was out on the streets. barksdale grew up in a housing project in baltimore with poverty, violence and crime. dante: to be tough you had to fight or you know have a big gun. to be successful, we thought that -- all right, look, nobody here that is a lawyer or a doctor, so i guess our occupation is either i will be a drug addict, a
stick-up artist, or i will be a drug dealer. reporter: barksdale started selling drugs. for his mother it was very hard raising five children by herself with hardly any money. joan: they learned things you know other than my teachings. they had choices to make and in a lot of times they made bad choices, to me. he said it was survival choices, which i can agree with. they wanted more things that i couldn't provide. reporter: baltimore is one of the poorest cities in the us, with one of the highest crime and murder rates. barksdale himself was arrested several times. he spent more than eight years in prison. dante: i realized that it wasn't like i was when i was young. i wasn't going to prison and just leaving my mother and my sisters, now i am leaving my children and my wife. so i thought about that. and when i thought about that,
god for some reason sent about five people to me, talking about the safe streets program and how i could get involved. reporter: today barksdale is an outreach coordinator at the anti-violence organization safe streets. it's friday afternoon. the 41-year-old is meeting with his colleagues. their shift has just started and they talk about recent violent incidents. if something happens, local residents call them. and they collect the information. dante: this is what we call our war room. our war room is how we track incidents going on in the community. the yellow dots are incidents that took place. they could have been a rape, an aggravated assault, a common assault, it could have been a robbery. reporter: the blue dots are
non-fatal shootings, the red ones fatal ones. dante: the greens that you see are actually conflict mediations. reporter: that is a crucial part of their job: being around and mediating conflicts in one of the most violent neighborhoods in baltimore. dante: about two days ago?" robert: yeah, about two days ago, we had a homicide across on that field over there. albert: i got difficulties dealing with death, you know what i'm saying? seeing death every day. death, you know what i'm saying, it shouldn't be normal. it's like, right now, we are so immune to it. it's, like, a normal thing. reporter: so, they reach out to high-risk youth. the outreach workers are spending time in the neighborhood during those hours when violence is more likely to
be committed. they're not interested in drug dealing, but are there to spread one message: don't shoot anybody -- think about your future. >> i mean like as far as like me trying to get myself together for my kids, trying to better my life for myself. so he helped me a lot with that. he is more like a big brother to everybody. reporter: the outreach workers are able to win the trust of the community because they have lived similar lives to many here. in the communities where they do outreach work, homicides have decreased significantly. but safe streets hasn't gotten enough funding from the city to expand the program to more neighborhoods -- despite the fact that in 2015 the murder rate is higher than it's been for years. in the first half of the year 156 people were killed. one reason: poverty. dante: it's more like a holistic approach that needs to be taken.
like the communities need education, the communities need training, the communities need employment. the kids need to be taught life skills. reporter: dante barksdale tries to be a role model. he and his wife always tell their daughter to get a college degree. just two weeks ago, at 41, he finally finished college himself. he went to prison right after high school, so by getting his degree in human services, dante barksdale has fulfilled one of his dreams. host: a worthy role model for those who don't believe they can make choices. that's all for now. and do remember to visit us online. we'll be back next week, same time, same place. until then, thanks for watching. .
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