Archive for the ‘Money & Mining’ Category

The best read of the week is at this link where you can read the stories of mining engineering students at the University of Arizona College of Engineering.  The stories are about their internships.  As the site notes by way of introduction:

Every UA mining engineering student does at least one internship, and many have completed two or three internships before they graduate. The interns’ projects are usually in line with what they are learning in their courses, but the jobs go beyond what can be taught in the classroom. Interns work on real projects that have real value for mining companies, sometimes even resulting in multimillion-dollar proposals.

Companies adopt students for a summer, or two or three, nurture them, then deliver the students back to the University more mature in their approach to learning and more ready for the work world, said Mary Poulton, head of mining and geological engineering and director of the UA Lowell Institute for Mineral Resources.

Make sure to click on the sidebar to read the details of some of the students.    I particularly like the one about Ashlyn Hooten.  Here is a summary of what she did as an intern:

Hooten just finished her third consecutive summer working at the Freeport-McMoRan Inc. Sierrita mine in Arizona, following five months of study abroad in Australia. The internships gave Hooten what the classroom could not: real-life experience. Australia gave her what Arizona could not: a truly global perspective.

Hooten’s summer jobs at the Sierrita open-pit copper mine about 45 minutes south of Tucson ranged from core sampling minerals the summer after her freshman year, to planning day-to-day mine operations the following summer, to managing the routing of ore grades and waste material after her junior year.

Hooten got a taste of the FIFO life when the University of Western Australia flew her class to the Granny Smith Gold Mine, about an hour and 40 minutes from Perth by plane. The mine, like most mines in Western Australia, she said, “was pretty much in the middle of nowhere.” Hooten also made the most of Western Australia’s other natural resources — the bush and the beach — during her weeklong study break, which is similar to spring break in the United States.

All sounds like great fun and instructive.  I recommend you spend a bit of time reading the rest.  It is a fresh and encouraging look at mining and the young people who are its future.


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I repeat below the entire article from InfoMine’s Career Mine.  It is by Susan Kihn who does a fine job of setting out the facts.

Even with the downturn in mining worldwide which has seen massive job losses as a result of mining companies downsizing, putting mines into maintenance mode or closing down, it appears not all is bad for Geologists working in mining in Australia. Besides other mining professions, we know that there are a lot of Geologists who have lost their jobs worldwide and in Australia. What I thought may be of interest, was to see how this downturn has affected Geologist salaries in Australia. (more…)

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We have just finished the InfoMine Conference on geosynthetics in mining.  I think it was a success although I had better await the evaluation forms before coming to definitive conclusions. The proceedings will be available through the InfoMine e-Store at this link.  In my opinion, this is a magnificent collection of papers on a topic that has long cried for detailed, focussed attention. For the use of geosynthetics in mining is different to the use of geosynthetics in landfills and other civil engineering application.  The mining projects that involve the use of geosynthetics are orders of magnitude larger than any other category of projects.  The challenges are greater: there are few precedents; there are no substantive regulations; and the consequences of use and misuse are greater. (more…)

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In past postings I have provided Canadian mining wages and salaries from the CostMine 2014 Canadian Mine Salaries, Wages, and Benefits Report.  As noted on the CostMine website, this report provides the following: (more…)

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The numbers just do not add up. As I read the many sites on the web, I learn that British Columbia has about thirty operating mines. The BC government has about $172 million in closure bonds. Say about five or six million a mine. That seems grossly inadequate to me. I have just finished estimating closure of one mine and it came to nearly $60 million. Does this mean BC should have $1.7 billion in closure bonds? Here are some observations from various websites that may help you ponder this issue. (more…)

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The five pictures in this posting, were taken (by me) at the Getty Center in Los Angeles.  This place is surely a testament to genius and attention to detail.

Yesterday I was asked if Canadian guidelines are adequate to deal with the Mt Polley situation. More specifically, the questions continued: if the current Canadian guidelines regarding tailings dam safety had been implemented, would the failure have been avoided. Before I answer these questions, let us first take a look at the guidelines that are out there. (more…)

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I have lost count of the number of radio stations, newspapers, and magazines that have contacted me asking for opinions on the Mt Polley tailings happenings.  Somehow the email from Adrian Lee of that most reputable of Canadian magazine, McLeans, had a air of intelligence the pulled me into replying.  (I confess to being a regular reader of McLeans.) (more…)

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