The mining sector is a strategically vital industry, integral for the modern, prosperous lifestyles we are accustomed to in the West and for the hundreds of millions in China, India and other developing countries struggling to raise their standard of living.
Yet I still get the impression that many in the mainstream media, political circles and the general public view mining as a low-tech and polluting industry that is not welcomed in many regions.
I write a column on the mining sector examining corporate and government policies and challenges and have been continually surprised at the amount of misinformation about the industry, especially in newspapers and on television.
Where are the green mining stories?
Where is the commentary about poverty alleviation in Aboriginal communities and sustainable development?
Where is the information about high-tech engineering advances?
Where are the human interest articles?
That is the main reason why I have started a pro-mining blog titled “Republic of Mining.” Positive articles and commentary about most industries, especially the mining sector, are almost revolutionary, hence the name!
Unlike most blogs that usually have only one writer or voice, Republic of Mining invites senior executives and other industry leaders to send in commentary about current contentious issues and challenges. In addition, the blog intends to extensively profile the great mineral regions of the world – a National Geographic of the mining sector.
Today, the mining industry is under constant attack by a well-funded and “web savvy” environmental movement – which seems to dominate the Internet with their “green” propaganda. Partly because of this, the mining sector’s social license to operate is being questioned in many jurisdictions around the world.
Republic of Mining will provide a much needed industry perspective to a global audience that may have difficulty finding information on the many social and economic benefits, technical advances, environmental successes and current challenges of this complex sector.
The Republic of Mining will also devote extensive space to the history of the industry. For instance, the gold rushes in California, the Canadian Klondike, Western Australia and South Africa created enormous industrial growth and prosperity in these states or countries.
The copper wars in Montana, the union battles in the Sudbury Basin, the prospectors who found elephant-size deposits and the financial leaders like Canada’s Peter Munk who created an empire of gold – are all extraordinary stories.
Our history is being ignored and the Republic of Mining intends to make it more easily available to a younger “digital generation” around the globe who increasingly source most of their media information from the Internet.
The industry is keenly aware of a looming shortage of skilled workers. If young people don’t get excited about mining technology or understand the sector’s sustainable contributions towards wealth creation and poverty alleviation, then how will we entice the next generation to view mining as a smart career choice?
Regularly updated content about mining politics, industry profiles, green initiatives and commentary from key players, plus stories from the sector’s exciting past will ensure that the Republic of Mining will be a site worth visiting by the mainstream media, political decision makers and the general public.