Reader Rebuttal (February 01, 2000)
Placer Dome Fans
I read with interest the article you wrote about the Cortez Mine in Nevada (p. 19, CMJ December 1999). I’m particularly interested in the paragraph about the “Holding to Account” program as mentioned by John Bunch. Their safety record would seem to support the notion that what they are doing is working. By the way I liked the article and enjoy reading the Canadian Mining Journal; please keep up the good work!!
David M. Crockett
INCO Ltd., Thompson, MB
I would like to congratulate you for the excellent issue of CMJ dedicated to Placer Dome. Particularly the article describing Placer Dome Latin America came out very well, and I know Ken Parks dedicated much effort and professionalism to write an accurate piece about our region. I therefore thank you for such a splendid idea, and also agree with your words about Hugh Leggatt, a great professional and a kind man.
Regional Director Public Affairs
Placer Dome Latin America, Santiago, Chile
Thanks from Mining Matters
Thanks to your initiative, Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Mining Matters has received $585 in support from the sales of journals and special editions of CMJ. Thank you for making educational projects the beneficiary of your sales.
With the support of the minerals industry, we have been able to produce 2,000 copies of our new Grade 4 unit on Rocks, Minerals, Soils and Erosion- Deeper and Deeper. Over the next several months these units will be distributed to teachers through in-service workshops conducted by our Project Co-ordinator, Linda Lilge. We continue to provide additional resources and new activities through our Education Support Program to our Grade 7 teachers. Currently, for the cost of shipping and handling only, we are offering the “Careers in the Minerals Industry” video produced by the Mining Association of BC. Also, we regularly participate in various industry and educator conferences. At the recent Science Teachers’ Association of Ontario Conference, teacher interest in the Grade 4 project was so enthusiastic we are already considering producing more units.
Thank you again for CMJ‘s participation in our success.
Patricia J. Dillon, president
PDAC Mining Matters
Thanks to the readers who purchased our older volumes. You were supporting a good cause and helping us keep our workplace tidy. Ed.
I Still Say Oil Sands Is Mining…
This letter is to express my extreme disappointment with your article, “The Biggest in Canada” (CMJ, October 1999). In particular I take exception to your comments: “Of course, not everyone considers digging up unconsolidated bitumen-laden sand as mining, nor petroleum products as minerals.” And “But the oil sands are ‘out’ for purists,…”
I have worked for Syncrude for 24 years and know our mining application to be a very tough environment. But rather than taking my word for it, I would encourage you to talk to the major equipment manufacturers to get their opinion. Examples will include the fact that Caterpillar advises they manufacture trucks to handle 95% of what can be expected in a mining application, and they recognize Syncrude’s application to be so severe that it lies in that last 5%. CAT/Finning and Syncrude have a partnering arrangement for the development of the 797 360-ton truck in that it is CAT’s feeling that if you can make a piece of mining equipment work in the oil sands environment, it will work anywhere…. A similar story exists with the Komatsu Haulpak 320-ton 930E truck… A similar story exists for our hydraulic shovels, cable shovels, draglines and bucketwheels.
To say the least, I think your comments on the oil sands have offended a great number of people who consider themselves to be very good miners. Those who know first-hand what it takes to operate in the oil sands environment understand that this is a very challenging and difficult mining application. I think you owe all these people a retraction of your offensive statements and an apology.
vice-president, bitumen production (mining/extraction)
Syncrude Canada Ltd.
Fort McMurray, Alta.
As I said in the December issue (Reader Rebuttal, page 6), we at CMJ do consider the oil sands operations in Alberta to be mines, and agree that they are in a very tough mining environment. I am sorry if I offended anyone in my article. Ed.