Hope town BHP Billiton opened its Ravensthorpe Nickel Operation in May 2008, at the feverish height of Western Australia´s mining boom. The state was dripping money and, for those lucky enough to be on the gravy train, life had never been better. Real estate and business prices skyrocketed in the intense build up to the mine´s opening and thousands moved to and invested in the once sleepy towns of Hopetoun and Ravensthorpe, feeling safe in BHP Billiton´s assurance that the mine had a 30 year life. But in January 2009 the bubble burst. The nickel price plummeted and BHP Billiton did the unthinkable: it suddenly and unexpectedly announced the closure of the RNO after only eight months in operation. The local communities of Hopetoun and Ravensthorpe were devastated. Now, ten months after the mine´s closure, the population has more than halved, real estate prices have plummeted and hundreds of houses are empty and stagnating on real estate agent´s books (now valued significantly lower than the mortgages on them). Business turnover has dropped by up to eighty percent and owners are struggling with huge debt. Hope Town examines one of the nastiest fallouts from the economic downturn and how a resilient and tightly-knit community is trying to pick itself up, dust itself off and start all over again.
The science and main causes of mining disasters, and a closer look at specific mining accidents, including the 1913 Senghenhydd Pit Disaster, the 1966 Aberfan Disaster, the 1972 Honkeiko Colliery, the 1975 Chasnala Mine Disaster and the Springhill Mining Disasters. Also mining disasters in the news and pop culture.
Greek exit scenarios and what it means for gold - Grant Williams - PODCASTS - Mineweb.com | The world’s premier mining and mining investment website Mineweb
Mineweb.com | The world’s premier mining and mining investment website
In the old days, we sang about fear and fortune way down in the mines. This week, the mining talk was way up in space. Mining asteroids. A bunch of rich guys with big track records and big dreams have formed a new company – Planetary Resources – to chase down asteroids and suck out their riches. Platinum. Iridium. Water in space.
If it sounds like the movie Avatar, well, director James Cameron is in the venture. So are Google guys. And Microsoft money. Is this for real?
This hour, On Point: Planetary Resources founder Eric Anderson and more. We’re thinking about mining asteroids.