Articles on Mining

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Despite strong export data, Australia’s trade relationship with China isn’t as developed as we think. AAP

Why Australia’s trade relationship with China remains at ground level

AUSTRALIA IN ASIA: In the seventh part of our series, James Laurenceson looks at the challenges in doing business with China. The headline numbers surrounding Australia’s exports to China make for impressive…
Exporting uranium carries a risk not just in Australia, but all over the world. Mad House Photography

Expanding Olympic Dam: with great power comes great responsibility

The South Australian and Federal governments have approved another expansion at Olympic Dam. This expansion raises some very important questions about Australia’s role in the future of global energy and…
Is this the place for an antimony mine? I guess that depends what an antimony mine is… Karl Vernes

Rain, runoff and rare metals – the toxic threat to the Dorrigo Plateau

Hands up those who’ve heard of antimony. Now, keep them up if you can name its chemical symbol, list the world’s leading producers, or even name a single commercial product that contains the element. Most…
Making Australian miners more ethical could also make them more competitive. AAP

Sustainable mining: a vision for Australia to lead the world

Recent high prices for minerals have inspired a lot of companies and countries to start mining. But with a lead-time of up to five years for developing a mining operation, it is difficult to take advantage…
The Wieliczka salt mine in Poland is now a wedding venue. Nikonmania

From mine to wine: creative uses for old holes in the ground

Is it possible to have an ice-skating rink in an old mine? Or perhaps a wine and cheese cellar in a mine shaft? Or even a swimming pool in a processing plant? It isn’t just possible – it can be environmentally…
Dharawal National Park is safe from mining, but do we value biodiversity enough to spread protection? taffynorm/Flickr

No refuge: When a ‘protected area’ is not really protected

The New South Wales government last week said it would ban mining in the newly announced Dharawal National Park, an area where Illawara Coal was planning to extract up to $40 billion worth of black coal…
Insider trading detection in Australia has evolved, but ASIC still needs a win. AAP

Hanlong insider trading case will test ASIC’s resolve

Five senior executives of the Chinese-owned investor Hanlong Mining have had assets frozen after the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) launched an investigation into alleged insider…
Expansion is behind a transitory decline in the mining sector productivity growth: but what’s the picture for other sectors? AAP

Australia’s productivity: what is the true picture behind our lagging growth?

Official explanations of the deterioration in Australia’s productivity growth have tended to emphasise the especially sharp declines in three sectors – agriculture, mining, and utilities (such as electricity…
Don Argus’s focus on industrial relations overlooks the real issues behind slowing productivity growth. AAP

Don Argus blames IR for productivity slump - but are other factors at work?

Former BHP Billiton Chairman Don Argus has blamed inflexible industrial relations laws for Australia’s lagging productivity, describing the Gillard Government’s economic reform agenda as “lazy”. Argus…
Cate Blanchett is among the celebrities pressed into service to persuade us on political issues. AAP/WWF

Selling the political message: what makes a good advert?

MEDIA & DEMOCRACY: This afternoon, Andrew Hughes examines which recent political adverts have been a success, as part of The Conversation’s week-long series on how the media influences the way our…
What can you do with a hole in the ground? It’s about more than planting trees. OZinOH/flickr

Sending mines to rehab: good for health, good for the environment

In late 1986, residents of Diamond St, Kingston, an outer southern suburb of Brisbane, began to notice a black sludge-like substance seeping through the soil and into their gardens. Within six months…
Iron ore is now Australia’s biggest export. AFP/CHRISTIAN SPROGOE RIO TINTO

The Boom: Iron ore and Australia

Australia’s economic future lies underneath our feet. The island continent is blessed with a variety of natural resources but none as plentiful or important as iron ore. Iron is a common element in soils…
Are talkback radio hosts or Julia Gillard leading debate in areas like immigration and the mining tax? AAP

Immigration: does government or the media decide Australia’s policy?

The release of figures today showing a dramatic fall in immigration numbers prompts the question of whether certain sections of the media are influencing government policy. Are Australian politicians allowing…
Sharing the spoils: WA Premier Colin Barnett confers with Queensland’s Anna Bligh. AAP

Despite our patchwork economy, all states are sharing in the boom

The marked increase in international commodities prices and the accompanying rise in the value of the Australian dollar has led to popular concern about a two-speed or multi-speed economy, prompting the…
Mining companies are finally sharing the benefits with the native owners of the land. AFP/Christian Sprogoe/Rio Tinto

The Boom: Native owners or mining companies: who benefits?

Aboriginal Australians living in remote areas have, for the past five decades, experienced at close quarters the ill-effects of large scale mining, while receiving few of the benefits. From Cape York…

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