NGA Tearline: China's mining investments and operations in Peru and Ecuador

Case Studies Produced in Collaboration with Students from William & Mary

NGA Tearline—an open source intelligence project between the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency and U.S. research institutions—closed out 2021 with a series of reports on economic and environmental activities from top U.S. threats: China, Russia, and North Korea.

Exploring China's Footprint in the Andes Mountains: Copper Mining in Ecuador and Peru

Published March 11, 2022

These Tearline articles from the College of William & Mary’s geoLab show how local resistance can sometimes delay construction and/or operation of Chinese mining projects, especially centered around environmental concerns, in South America. An interesting GEOINT finding from the Peru reports shows the Peruvian government listing one mine in the feasibility study phase when imagery shows the operational phase.

For these reports NGA Tearline collaborated with authors from the College of William & Mary: Caroline Morin, Sophie Pittaluga, Charles Pritz and Zak Zeledon.

Read more of these intelligence reports at

What is NGA Tearline?

NGA is partnering with expert private groups to grow public-facing, authoritative open source intelligence on various strategic and humanitarian intelligence topics that tend to be under-reported within long-form format.

This authoritative open source content will be cited for internal purposes and it will grow public trust by increasing transparency around shared public-private interest in various strategic and humanitarian intelligence topics that are fit for public consumption.

Learn more about NGA Tearline.