Archive for the ‘North America’ 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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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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A Balancing Act at Granville Island

It was bound to happen–I just wondered when.  With Pebble essentially down, attention now turns to new BC mines that may affect rivers that flow into Alaska.  Here is a statement that hit my email this morning. (more…)

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Just published by CostMine is the 2014 Survey Results – Canadian Mine Salaries, Wages and Benefits.  I will survey some of the data in this and future postings.  First a look at average Canadian Mine wages (In Canadian dollars): (more…)

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I have not posted on this blog the past few days.  The reason:  I was at a fly-in, fly-out camp where the internet connection is sporadic & they do not make it easy to access spurious blogs.   Plus the weather was terrible:  ice-rain in which planes could not fly. (more…)

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Below is a report that hit my email inbox today.  I repeat in full, not because mines are the main culprit, but because mines are probably NOT the main culprit.  This report is a sobering reminder that dry-cleaners, car-battery recyclers, old military bases, and jails are also major contaminators.  Yet so little is written or done about them—it is not a very sexy topic–so much easier to excoriate mining. Not that Giant, Faro, and a few other old mines are going to be cheap to cleanup. (more…)

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Constructing covers over mining wastes at sites in cold climates involves consideration of these factors that are unique to cold climates: (more…)

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