Saturday, August 28, 2010

Mt Lemmon copper mine story doesn't add up

The bold front page headline in Tuesday's Arizona [Tucson] Daily Star, "Revival of mining atop Mt. Lemmon is sought" certainly caught my attention. The story described plans of Gold Hawk Resources to buy the old underground Oracle Ridge Copper Mine on the north side of the Catalina Mountains north of Tucson. The production numbers they gave were greater than 3 times those for the proposed Rosemont copper mine in the Santa Ritas.

But Jonathan DuHamel, who writes at the Wry Heat blog on, quickly figured out the paper was confusing production of raw ore with copper production among other errors. Jonathan systematically describes the basis for the confusion. The Star has corrected their story online but a lot of folks only saw the original headlines. [right, view of the Oracle Ridge copper mine, as shown on a commercial real estate web site -]

One of the concerns showing up in comments on the story is for heavy truck traffic down popular Catalina Highway, but it sounds like the original mine sent their ore trucks down a northern route not frequented by locals and tourists. A re-opened mine would likely only send a few truckloads per day, presumably along this same route.

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