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Archive for March, 2007

The troglobite will soon be a common mining word, or at least a swear word. Rio Tinto is seeking to expand iron ore mining near Pannawonica in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. They want to develop a new mine to replace the existing mine that will be worked out in the next decade or so. At the site of the new mine they have found troglobites. These are described as four millimeter subterranean creatures related to spiders.  Apparently if this new mine does not go ahead, they local town will have to be deserted. So here we have to decide between:

  • Extinction of a species
  • Extinction of a town (should I call it a community or culture?).

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Are you being paid as much for working in a mine as you are worth? Bet somebody, somewhere, doing the same job as you, is earning more. The question is, are you prepared to move to that other place to get a higher salary? Is more money worth the family disruption and settling in to a new and maybe less nice place? To help you decide whether to stay put or to pull up and go, here is a summary of 2006 mining salaries.  The salary numbers come from the three books Jennifer Leinart of CostMine sent me yesterday:

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How the world has changed.  Can you imagine this:  China is letting the United Nations in to launch a project to improve safety for Chinese coal miners.   Here are extracts from the Canadian Press report

The United Nations launched a project Tuesday to improve safety for Chinese coal miners, who average 13 deaths a day [there are more than five million Chinese coal miners.]. The US$14.42 million plan will train and educate miners in five provinces where numerous fires, floods and other disasters strike mines every year despite repeated government promises to improve safety.

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Here is one of those reports on mining that infuriates the reader because of incompetent brevity and hints of worse to come:  AAP reports re the Tolukuma Gold Mine in Papua New Guinea that the mine “dumps its mining residue into the river system…[but]..blood test data ….from village communities [downstream of the mine]…did not show evidence of anything other than normal ranges of chemical traces within human blood.”   The mine management disputes the findings of high toxic heavy metal blood levels by a fellow who says he worked for Australian hospitals, which deny that he worked for them.  If you are now as confused as I am, here is the full report: 

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Just added to the Blogroll is a new blog The Bottom Line by Michael Assouline CFA.   There are but three posts and no comments.  These are the posts:

  • Substance behind the uranium hype.
  • Getting technical with copper
  • To beat the market, stick to the basics.

Good luck to him.   Good luck to you investing on his advice.  And good luck to the mines invested in.

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The conclusions from the Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada are pretty obvious:  (1) not many blogs have ads, yet; (2) 52% of readers say they trust blogs; (3) blogs could eat into paper and online newspaper ad revenue; and (4) there is still much opportunity to create branded, credible blogs. 

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How can mines benefit from global warming?  Greg Easterbrook, in the April 2007 Atlantic Monthly notes that in economics there are no  zero-sum games; somebody will benefit from global warming.  His top nominees are the Inuit who rule Nunavut, a place that will change from a frozen waste land to a nice warm place.   Then there is Greenland waiting to be clear of the ice.  Both places probably contain ore bodies just waiting to be mined.  Is the mining industry ready?  The obvious action is to go exploring and stake claims.  This all seems like trivial, trash-press talk.  But just maybe it is not, and global warming may just be for real.  Rationale people might as well discuss how we are going to benefit from the inevitable. 

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Technorati claims to give you a Technorati Profile and link your blog into the wider world on blogs.  I am trying that right now so we can get more exposure.  Also maybe I can get hold of more blogs on mining.  Stay tuned and I will expand this piece on the larger world of blogs, mining, and opnions & news about world mining. One example:  Philippine Mining News.   And another: Tim’s El Salvador Blog.

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Browsing websites can be fun.  They open your eyes to details of the familiar that you had not previously noticed.   And they can set you off thinking of family and fear.  These trivial observations are occasioned by looking at the Firwin site.  They make removable insulation systems.  Not being sure what a removable insulation system is, I went deeper into the site.  Here is what I found.

First to the military applications ( my son is right now floating around Iran as part of the US Navy presence that may yet free fifteen British sailors, or at the very least, contain crazy Iranian ambitions.)   Do they supply the US Navy, and how is their product used?  Maybe I should look more carefully at the Marine section

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There are, or at some time in the past have been, at least 270 mines in Jackson County, Oregon (Mindat) In the Jacksonville District there are the Grace Diggings, Jacksonville Placer, Norlin Mine, Opp Mine, Opp Placer, Town Mine, Williamson Mine, Winchester Housten Placer Mine, and Yellow King Mine. Gold mining in Oregon had its beginnings in Jackson County. Gold was discovered in 1852 on Jackson Creek. Here are some of the places from which 500,000 ounces of gold have been mined—and where today you can go and try your luck at finding more gold:

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