|Updated: 1 Sep., 2007|
By Charles Kubach, Mine-Engineer.Com
1 Sep, 2007
Mining can often bring very good news to local citizens, especially in remote locations where prospects of making a good living are few and far between. A mining company, Northern Dynasty, has been exploring an old Cominco property in Alaska. Their exploration efforts have yielded a ore reserve that has 94,000,000 ounces of gold, 680,000 tons of copper and 1,880,000,000 pounds of molybdenum. One would think that for the company and the local community, things could not be better.
However, the radical environmental movement enters the picture, concerned that some mining company digging in the ground to extract valuable resources that the economy requires, will somehow "change" their hallucinatory outlook of how the land "should" be, have threatened to bring a halt to development, and cause the future of thousands of Alaska citizens to remain bleak. They are pulling out all stops to prevent any mining in the Pebble deposit near Nondalton, Alaska. They oppose any industry. They especially oppose mining and petroleum, the radical environmentalists' favorite targets.
The fact that this mine would bring 2,000 jobs directly to locals, add annually around $100,000,000 in salaries to the local citizens, bring annually an additional $200,000,000 to $500,000,000 in related business to the local economy, and contribute a large volume of tax revenue to the state and federal government, have absolutely no bearing on their decision to oppose any mining in the area. Their reason, the land should be kept the way it is. Why? They "think" this is the way it should be.
Facts that mining employs many engineers, geologists and scientists that can ensure that mining can be conducted without harming the environment, has no bearing in their thought process. They go to their "experts", many of whom have been smoking illegal drugs, sitting in treetops somewhere, or soliciting monetary contributions from the gullible public, to cite numerous "reasons" that mining would be bad. They go to public hearings, and try to incite civil disturbance, offer groundless, baseless reasons that the mining would change their delusional view of the world, and offer darkness and despair for the future of Alaskan citizens.
For mining and petroleum companies, this scenario has sadly become a way of life. It costs them millions of dollars to fight these ridiculous claims by these charlatan groups, whose only concern is social engineering. They want to dictate how we, the taxpaying citizens of the world, should live and act, and then send us the bill for their bad ideas that can only fail. They also want our money, as they dream up their next industrial "villain", in order to launch a new campaign soliciting contributions from the public. If these radicals have their way, mankind would be living in caves, eating tofu, and waiting for the next disaster to wipe them out.
Hopefully, the citizens of Alaska are not as dumb as the Radical Environmental Movement think they are, and will not give in to their groundless claims, and will support the mining project. This way they will reap the economic benefits for 50 or so years to come (the projected life of the mine), and have a brighter future for themselves and their children.
In the meantime, Northern Dynasty is preparing their Environmental Impact Study (Engineering and Scientific Study on the impact of their operation), to show how it can be mined successfully, without creating harm to the environment. One need only look East to Northern Canada, and see many mines have brought significant benefits to the local communities, without harming the environment. Engineers, geologists and scientists have designed and operated many mines in similar conditions that extract metals, diamonds, etc., without creating any damage to the environment. The local residents have prospered, some seeing their children grow up and work for the same mining company their fathers did, enabling them to remain in their ancestral home, and live a much better lifestyle than previous (pre-mining) generations did.
So who will win this battle for political supremacy in the tundra, the left winged, half-witted Radical Environmental Movement or the Citizens of Alaska? Only time will tell. I am pulling for the Alaskan citizens to make the right choice.
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