Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain
the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in
Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles
Citizens of French Guiana in the Amazon rainforest are debating whether the territory should host a huge gold-mining project. A decision from Paris is expected imminently. France’s President Emmanuel Macron has declared that such projects will be allowed only if they are exemplary in terms of their environmental and economic ramifications. In our view, this project fails on both counts as currently proposed.