MUZO: Inside the emerald mines that make Colombia a global giant of the green gem
MUZO, Colombia — Although he has helped transform Colombia’s emerald industry, long a source of violence and environmental damage, former U.S. diplomat Charles Burgess admits that he got into the business on a whim.
- Audio available on NPR – link below…
“I don’t have a mining background,” he told NPR during a recent tour of the mine he runs near the town of Muzo deep in the Andes Mountains. “I never in my wildest imagination thought I’d be working in any sort of business like this. But it’s been fascinating.”
Burgess, 67, is president of the Muzo Companies Colombia that mine and export 85% of Colombia’s emeralds, helping to make the country the world’s largest producer of high-quality emeralds.