State of Mining In California 2007

"Based on the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) preliminary data for 2007, California ranked third behind Arizona and Nevada in non-fuel mineral production, accounting for approximately 6.3% of the nations’ total. The market value of mineral production for California was $4.3 billion. California produced about 30 different industrial minerals during the year. California led the nation in the production of sand and gravel, portland cement, diatomite and natural sodium sulfate, and was the only producer of boron and rare earths. The state ranked second behind Florida for masonry cement. The only metals produced were gold and silver. California ranked 6th in gold production out of nine states that reported for the year. Other minerals produced include common clay, bentonite clay (including hectorite), crushed stone, dimension stone, feldspar, fuller's earth, gemstones, gypsum, iron ore (used in cement manufacture), kaolin clay, lime, magnesium compounds, perlite, pumice, pumicite, rare earths, salt, silver, soda ash, and zeolites. There were about 660 active mines producing non-fuel minerals during 2007. Approximately 10,000 people are employed at these mines and their processing plants."
Susan Kohler, Senior Geologist, California Geological Survey

Although California is called the Golden State, due to the Radical Environmental Movement flunkies, the California State Legislature, the gold mining business had been legislated out of business, with only 1% of mine production being comprised of gold. In their complete lack of reason, the flunkies of the green movement decided that surface gold mines must reclaim their pits, by completely filling them in. Only a few grams of gold are contained in a ton of low grade ore, and it takes all of the technology and planning that engineers and operators can devise to produce gold at a profit, without the absurd added expense of filling in the pit.

If the legislature were half as efficient as a modern gold mining operation, extracting a ounce of gold by blasting, crushing, leaching 20 tons of rock, the State of California would collect twice the revenues with half of the current tax rates, and we would have a surplus, in place of the current onerous $71 billion deficit. But, alas, we are not so fortunate. These clowns are more like Bozo orange wig, big nose and floppy shoes, refusing to reign in their spending binge, but insisting that the only way to reduce the deficit is to increase taxes and fees. They have massive tax increases, including restoration of the hated motor vehicle fees that cost one governor his job.

The majority of gold mined today is low grade, surface mined (open pit) and heap leached. The brilliant regulation in California that requires all surface gold mines to backfill the pits effectively shuts down gold mining in the state. The Radical Environmental Movement had once again shoved their agenda down business operators throats, through their financing of the legislators that pushed their agenda until it became law. Mot those high paying mining jobs exist in Canada, South America and Asia, but the tree huggers do not care if the middle class has a job, after all they should be building "green stuff", which is a euphemism for approved garbage that functions poorly, cost a lot but is approved by the green movement and their paid political hacks.

To sum it up, unless you are in industrial minerals, you will be mining it someplace other than California. Just like the legislators have run most manufacturing business out of the state they have focused their energies on the gold mining industry, to destroy it, also.

Please note that if any government agency, person, or tree hugger organization is offended by anything I say or write, I really don't care, so don't bother to send me email, call or write.

Charles Kubach, Mine-Engineer.Com
(Updated: 29 Dec., 2008)