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Posts Tagged ‘women in mining’

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Goldcorp has announced that it will seek to involve more women in mining.  That is admirable.  Here are some of my stories of women in mining.

The bravest woman in mining I met was but twenty-eight.  She was beautiful and bold.  She drove a large truck at a large mine.  I had spent two years testing the idea that if we let the tailings freeze, then placed a geogrid, a geotextile, and a layer of light-weight coke,  we could ride out  over this floating cover.  I did all the calculations possible.  I tested materials in the lab.  I did trial runs.  Eventually the fateful day arrived–let us drive a large truck out and see if the predicted one-meter deformation was correct.

None of the male drivers would volunteer.  Even though the young twenty-year old bragged about high speeds on highways in his convertible.

She demurely said: “If you will come with me, I will try.”

I sat her and her male colleagues down and explained what I believed would happen: the cover would deform and we would see the level of the tailings aligned with the truck windows.  They all blanched.  But we persuaded the health & safety folk to stand by on the shore, ready with equipment to pull us out if I were wrong.  All her colleagues stood by on the shore as well.

Needless to tell the drive was without incident.  All went as calculated and predicted.  She drove with precision and verve.  I was nervous but simulated calm.  I did not like seeing the road sink, the coke bulge, the tailings ooze, the people in anxious, but expectant observation.  She did it, and we returned to shore and general acclaim.  She will always be my hero and heroine.

Another lady truck driver thereafter offered to take me around the mine in her bigger truck.  I did, although I am sure we broke a few rules doing so.  But she drove so gently and was so friendly, who could resist.

At the upcoming conference Mine Water Solutions to be held in Vancouver April 12 and following, Lisa Wade of Goldcorp will give a keynote speech on Goldcorp’s Water Stewardship Strategy.  I will be there—for Lisa is another of my heroes/heroines.  She epitomizes the best of the best.  Enough said–come if only to hear her.  It will be a seminal event.

Those who have read this blog for a long time probably know that my eldest daughter is involved in mining.  Now she works for Geo-logic.  Two weeks hence I will be with her at the Escobal Mine in Guatemala to observe the dry stack—for she did most of the detailed engineering and now is time to peer review its status a year after start-up.

I have written many postings on this blog about women in mining.  No need to repeat what I have previously said.  A summary is this:  I have worked for and consulted to many women in mining.  And still am doing so.  They are without fail great to work for.  There is a tender, gentle toughness that males do not have.  Plus they are far more intelligent than their male counterparts.  It is fun and a challenge to get them the deliverables they need, want, and demand.

Thus I know that Goldcorp is doing the right thing.  We applaud them, even though their recent announcement makes it even more frustrating that I cannot invest in them because of work for them and these blog postings.

Simple: if you are a qualified woman seeking to work in mining, seek out Goldcorp.  You will do well, I am sure.  Let me know how it goes.

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No posts these past few days as I have been in Huntington Beach with kids and grandkids.  In between family time I have read Dickens’ Bleak House.  Many strange and mad characters in that book.  Victorians all I concluded; until I looked around me in Huntington Beach and saw the following two whose story I tell. (more…)

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Day one of the  conference Paste 2014.   Actually the actual conference begins tomorrow.  Today there were short courses and meeting of friends and fellow travellers on the mining journey.  The most beautiful was a lovely lady from Brazil who is studying at the university of British Columbia for a semester and will be a mining engineer in a year or two.  We chatted over lunch and if she is, as I believe she will be, the future of mining, the profession is in good and beautiful hands. (more…)

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Today was the first warm day of spring.  I slept late, got up to sunshine, and rode my bicycle into work via the Seabus (in total a 60 minute journey).  I rode home this evening along the bike lanes,  along Adanac Road, and over the Second Narrows Bridge (about 75 minutes of cycling.) (more…)

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On a plane, somewhere between Santiago and Dallas, while enjoying food , drink, and Green Day on my iPod, I read in one of the five magazines that I regularly peruse, an article that said that business leaders who support Romney are not coming out in his support.  They think he will be good for the economy; but they do not like his, and the Republican’s, social policies.  Who but mittconception and his tribe believe that pregnancy, even by rape, is God’s will?  (more…)

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Breaking the cycle of poverty is a noble aim and a laudable action.  The instinct of rich Canadian women to do good is inevitably drawn to such “business” activities as making small loans to the otherwise dispossessed.  They call it microlending.  Here is the latest report on more noble action by rich ladies and richer guys: 

Three well-known Canadian mining financiers and philanthropists have agreed to donate their time and support to the latest Canadian mining industry social cause. In a “Dragon’s Den meets The Apprentice” format, Frank Giustra, Rob McEwen and Eric Sprott have agreed to meet with the winners of a MEET THE MINING MOGUL contest being organized by the WOMEN IN MINING to support a CDN$250,000 fundraiser for microlending in South Africa. 

Rob McEwen, who is CEO of US GOLD, comments about his reason for supporting this fundraiser: “I believe in the concept of instilling confidence, causing people to believe in themselves and to strive towards financial independence. Microlending exists for that purpose.” Contest winners will be announced during the International Women in Mining Reception on March 3, 2009, at the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada Convention in Toronto.

(more…)

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Janice Molineau, state mine inspector for underground minesI wish this were just a joke; but it is a fact.  Whenever I post anything on this blog about women in mining, two things happen:

  • I get many quiet comments about being sexist; and
  • The number of page views increases dramatically. 

The number of page views also increases dramatically whenever I use keywords like “pretty lady.”  The reason for this sudden spike of interest is, I suspect, the rather sordid spectacle of men who have automatic alerts to anything new on pretty ladies, women mining, and you can imagine the rest. 

So with some trepidation, I bring your attention to the 2004 report on the III International Conference on “Women and Mining.”  For obvious reasons I do not comment, but leave you to read and decide yourself. 

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