You may have also heard about Bitcoin Mining, with megaservers & computers that essentially do math problems all day to generate "money".
Lastly, there is the conventional, old, hum-drum kind of mining. This would be the kind where rocks are extracted from Earth to be used in production of goods & commodities.
Below, we have a beautifully Terraced Mine, with a bulldozer at peace in its natural environment:
We do need mining in our current society. It may not be pretty, but you couldn't read this very text without electronics & the mined resources needed to build them. There are "greener" alternatives being researched, as shown in yesterday's article Hot Solar Homes. However, they are more expensive, and require a stronger eco/environmentally-friendly consumer to popularize them.
Most mines appear to be run in a fairly responsible manner. In the USA, and abroad, there are industry-enforced policies & procedures, government-imposed regulations, and even local groups who have public say over mine operations. Unfortunately, there are also a number of mining locations that behave unethically, and cause significant harm to the environment and ecosystems around them.
This is Hanrahan's Creek stream bank near the Gulf of Carpentaria that runs past the Redbank Copper mining operation in the "Northern Territory" of Australia.
As is clearly evident, this spot has heavy contamination from leaks within the mining operation. Note that eerie green tint to the water & white mold-looking material on the rocks. Those are not photo-lens errors or filter effects. The Redbank mine actually shut-down 18 years ago, but has been leaking copper sulphide into the nearby creek & other water sources for years.
You know it's bad when signs such as these show up. Of course, it is often the case that the danger has been present long before the sign goes up. And that's exactly the situation here in the Gulf of Carpentaria. Recall, the mine shut down nearly 2 decades ago. We can reasonably suspect that the leaking has been an issue for some period of time spanning 1yr-17.99years between shut-down & current events.
And current events are exactly what brings Redbank Copper back into the news. The oldest news article I can find on the issue dates to 2013, which seems to be when residents & government officials began to publicly confront the issue. History Search
It appears, according to North Territory Prosecution, that the entire situation will have legal procedings in the Magistrates Court this August 2015.
There are many sites that have similar issues. This one, the Redbank Copper mine, was allegedly improperly sealed upon shut-down. That allowed copper sulphide to leak ever since the original owners left the site. According to an earlier water-analysis of the Hanrahan Creek, the water has a PH level close to battery acid. Doesn't sound like something I would be interested in drinking/using.
What do you think?
- Should mining companies need authorization to begin work/construction?
- Or, should they have to talk with community leaders before starting to dig?
Or, is there another approach you would prefer?
Discussion Continues in Comments Below:
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