Archive | Diamond Mining

Gems discovered in South Africa are ‘quartz, not diamonds’ (Al Jazeera.com – June 21, 2021)

https://www.aljazeera.com/

Gemstones that sparked a diamond rush to eastern South Africa last week are just quartz after all, according to preliminary findings.

Thousands of people had flocked to a hillside in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province to dig for mysterious stones first unearthed by a cattle herder and believed to be diamonds.

The rush prompted the government to send geoscientists and mining experts to collect samples for testing, the results of which quashed the dreams of diggers hoping to strike it rich. Continue Reading →

Liam Neeson’s ‘The Ice Road’ Netflix Movie: What We Know So Far – by Tigran Asatryan (What’s On Netflix.com – June 7, 2021)

 

https://www.whats-on-netflix.com/

Netflix has made another big purchase at the European Film Market along with Christian Bale’s The Pale Blue Eye and Colin Firth’s Operation Mincemeat. The third film the streamer acquired is The Ice Road, starring Liam Neeson.

The film that Netflix bought for $18M will be distributed by Netflix in the US (other regions’ availability not yet known) from June 2021. The Ice Road was written and directed by Jonathan Hensleigh, writer of Die Hard With a Vengeance, Jumanji and Armageddon.

Hensleigh also wrote and directed 2004 action movie The Punisher that starred Thomas Jane. The Ice Road is produced by Aperture Media (The Trial of Chicago 7, Atomic Blonde), Envision Media Arts (Mr. Church, Death of Me) and Code Entertainment (Kill the Irishman, Drowning Mona). Continue Reading →

De Beers Unit’s Gigantic Diamond Could Be Third-Biggest Ever – by Mbongeni Mguni (Bloomberg News – June 16, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — Debswana Diamond Co., a unit of De Beers Plc, unearthed a 1,098 carat stone in Botswana on June 1, the largest since the company began operations five decades ago.

Preliminary analysis suggests the stone is the world’s third-largest gem-quality diamond ever after the Cullinan Diamond that was discovered in South Africa in 1905 and the Lesedi la Rona that was found in Botswana in 2015, according to Debswana acting Managing Director Lynette Armstrong.

Valuation by the Diamond Trading Co. Botswana is due in a few weeks and at this point, Debswana can’t say whether the rock will be sold by De Beers or through the Okavango Diamond Co., a state-owned trader that also holds the right to buy Debswana stones, Armstrong said. Continue Reading →

WATCH: Thousands rush to dig for diamonds in South Africa – by Cecilia Jamasmie (Mining.com – June 15, 2021)

https://www.mining.com/

The South African government has launched a formal investigation into claims made on social media of the existence of massive diamonds within easy reach near the town of Ladysmith, about 360 kilometers (224 miles) southeast of Johannesburg.

The country’s Department of Mineral Resources and Energy ordered people on Tuesday to halt the search as thousands continue to travel from across South Africa to join villagers who have been digging in the area since Saturday.

The Department noted it was sending a team of geological and mining experts to the site to collect samples and conduct an analysis. Continue Reading →

‘Get on with your jobs’: Keir Starmer takes aim at Rhodes row Oxford dons after they refused to teach students – by Eleanor Harding (Daily Mail – June 15, 2021)

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/

Sir Keir Starmer has demanded Oxford dons ‘get on with their jobs’ after they refused to teach students in a row over a statue of Cecil Rhodes. The Labour leader told academics it was unfair to punish ‘hard-hit’ students in their quest to remove the colonialist.

He waded into the furore after 150 lecturers threatened to stop tutorials for Oriel College students until the statue is removed from its building.

When asked yesterday if he supported the dons, Sir Keir urged them to end their boycott immediately. He told LBC News: ‘Get on with the job of teaching people. Let’s get our feet back firmly on the ground and teach the students. Continue Reading →

Diamond versus diamond – by Carolyn Gruske (CIM Magazine – June 08, 2021)

https://magazine.cim.org/en/

Even though man-made diamonds have the potential to satisfy our appetite for sparkle, they may never rock the mined-diamond industry

It was just a single word, but by deleting one adjective from a federal guideline, a U.S. government agency redefined an elemental form and forced a North American retail industry – and its customers – to come to a new understanding of one of its oldest and most traditional products, diamonds.

That change created even more uncertainty for a segment of the mining industry that is already prone to cyclical highs and lows. The deleted word was “natural.”

Prior to the change in 2018, the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Jewelry Guides – which the agency produces to help structure the market for precious metal, pewter, diamond, gemstone and pearl products – described diamonds as “natural stones that are formed of pure carbon crystallized in the isometric system, as long as they have been symmetrically fashioned with at least 17 polished facets. Continue Reading →

As Germany Acknowledges Its Colonial-Era Genocide in Namibia, the Brutal Legacy of Diamond Mining Still Needs a Reckoning – by Steven Press (Time Magazine – June 10, 2021)

https://time.com/

Steven Press is the author of Blood and Diamonds: Germany’s Imperial Ambitions in Africa, available from Harvard University Press.

Between 1904 and 1908, Germany’s military and leadership oversaw the killing of at least 80,000 Africans in what is now the independent country of Namibia. On May 28, Germany apologized. Declaring his country’s past violence in Namibia “genocidal,” Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also pledged $1.3 billion in aid to Namibians, whose capital, Windhoek, still has a prominent street named after Otto von Bismarck.

The German apology is a commendable step and important precedent. But its parameters are inadequate, and one reason why may be embedded in your family’s heirloom engagement ring.

Millions of carats in diamonds have been exported from Namibia since 1908. These same sparkling stones have a dirty history tied to German colonial rule. Right now, official statements about Germany’s debt to Namibia do not account for those gemstones at all. Continue Reading →

NUNAVUT MINING: De Beers considers carbon-neutral diamond mine near Iqaluit – by Ezra Black (Nunavut News – June 8, 2021)

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De Beers has set an ambitious goal to make the Chidliak Project its first carbon neutral diamond mine. Consequently, the company is looking to build a low-impact operation using renewable energy and cutting-edge technology.

The project is located on the Hall Peninsula of Baffin Island, approximately 200 kilometres south of Pangnirtung and about 120 kilometres from Iqaluit.

Due to the large number of kimberlite pipes – carrot-shaped geologic formations that often contain diamonds – De Beers is looking to design the operation using high-tech mining techniques, according to De Beers spokesperson Terry Kruger. Continue Reading →

What Pandora’s switch to synthetics means for NWT diamond mines – by Ben Andrews (Cabin Radio – May 13, 2021)

https://cabinradio.ca/

The world’s largest jewellery maker has sparked a debate about ethical mining and the Northwest Territories’ struggling diamond industry is at the centre.

he diamond industry is defending the ethics of mined diamonds after Danish company Pandora announced last week it would use only lab-grown products. Pandora said a combination of renewables and offsets will make its synthetic diamonds carbon-neutral.

Global jewellery organizations responded to Pandora’s announcement in a joint news release arguing the company had smeared natural diamonds by presenting the “misleading narrative” that lab-grown diamonds are an “ethical” alternative to gems pulled from the ground. Continue Reading →

DR Congo’s diamond hub loses lustre as hardships bite – by Marthe Bosuandole (AFP/Yahoo News – May 13, 2021)

https://news.yahoo.com/

Two hours by dirt road from the Democratic Republic of Congo’s diamond hub Mbuji-Mayi, life is hard for freelance miners.

On the way to Lupatapata, abandoned maize fields attest to a decline of the region’s once thriving agriculture sector.

The town has no major market, no maize depot, just a “mini-market” for diamonds where middle men wait to name their price for the precious stones, standing behind makeshift counters. Continue Reading →

Diamond Dealer Jared Holstein on the Limits of Ethical Sourcing – by Victoria Gomelsky (JCK Online.com – May 12, 2021)

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Don’t come to Jared Amadeo Holstein (pictured) expecting to find answers about ethical diamond sourcing. The San Francisco–based diamond, colored stone, and estate jewelry dealer, aka D’Amadeo, specializes in post-consumer recycled diamonds and colored stones, historical cuts, and known-source gemstones, but he makes no claims about his diamonds’ ethics.

“The word ethical is weighted and freighted and should be used very carefully,” Holstein tells JCK, admitting that he has persistent doubts about the how the goods he’s bought have come to market and the impacts they’ve had on people and the planet along the way.

“But being involved, buying goods that I’m not comfortable with buying, allows me to have conversations with people that are good,” Holstein says. “Everyone just needs to ask questions. It is all of our duty to press industry and to press producers for better information.” Continue Reading →

Pandora ditching mined diamonds for lab-grown ones – by Hannah Denham (Washington Post – May 4, 2021)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/

The world’s biggest jeweler announced Tuesday it will drop mined diamonds from its glass cases and sell only lab-generated ones, a pointed move for an industry that relies on scarcity for value and a reflection of consumer demand for sustainability and ethical sourcing.

Copenhagen-based Pandora’s foray into man-made diamonds, which can be produced at a fraction of the cost and time, reflects a reorientation of the jewelry market brought on by the pandemic and the sentiments of younger buyers, who are more likely to factor in environmental and human rights concerns when choosing products.

“It’s the right thing to do,” chief executive Alexander Lacik told the BBC. “We want to become a low-carbon business. I have four children, I’m leaving this earth one day, I hope I can leave it in a better shape than maybe what we’ve kind of created in the last 50 years or so.” Continue Reading →

Pandora says laboratory-made diamonds are forever – by Jonathan Josephs (BBC.com – May 4, 2021)

https://www.bbc.com/

The world’s biggest jeweller, Pandora, says it will no longer sell mined diamonds and will switch to exclusively laboratory-made diamonds.

Concerns about the environment and working practices in the mining industry have led to growing demand for alternatives to mined diamonds. Pandora’s chief executive, Alexander Lacik, told the BBC the change was part of a broader sustainability drive.

He said the firm was pursuing it because “it’s the right thing to do”. They are also cheaper: “We can essentially create the same outcome as nature has created, but at a very, very different price.” Continue Reading →

Debswana to Plow $6 Billion for Biggest Underground Diamond Mine – by Mbongeni Mguni (Bloomberg News – April 23, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — Debswana Diamond Co. will spend 65 billion pula ($6 billion) to build the world’s largest underground diamond mine at Botswana’s Jwaneng, which is already the richest mine by value for the previous stones.

The underground mine will have more than 360 kilometers (224 miles) of tunnel development and will hit full production by 2034, Debswana’s head of transformation and innovation, Thabo Balopi, said at a briefing in the capital, Gaborone, on Friday.

The underground mine will have a capacity of as much as 9 million carats per year, extending Jwaneng’s lifespan by 20 years, according to Balopi. An early access decline will be in place by 2023, he said. Continue Reading →

Stanford Historian Traces Colonial Origins of Conflict Diamonds in Namibia – by Sandra Feder (The Namibian – April 14, 2021)

https://www.namibian.com.na/

WHEN STANFORD historian Steven Press was trying to unearth hidden narratives about Germany’s colonial activities in South West Africa’s highly secretive diamond industry, he pursued that age-old maxim to “follow the money”.

Steven Press is an assistant professor of history in the School of Humanities and Sciences. His new book, Blood and Diamonds, traces the devastating cost of diamond mining and German colonial domination in Namibia during the late 18th and 19th centuries.

Chasing that trail led to some disturbing discoveries about the full extent of Germany’s ruthlessness as it pursued its economic aspirations in the African country now known as Namibia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Continue Reading →