Mine

Who Digs Solar and Wind Power? That’s Right: Miners

Publication: NBC News   Date: January 9, 2015   View Article

Mines from the Americas to Africa and Australia are slowly becoming unlikely hotspots for the production and use of green energy.

In some places, wind and solar farms resurface revenue from deserted mine lands. Elsewhere, mining companies are powering a portion of ongoing operations with renewable energy, which is now cost competitive with traditional fossil fuels and gives a green sheen to an industry often maligned by environmentalists.

To be sure, these are early days for these strange bedfellows. The reason for the coupling of mines and green energy varies from site to site and country to country, according to experts, but the trend is global and growing.

Abandoned mine could yield clues to stopping global warming

Publication: NBC News   Date: December 10, 2013   View Article

An abandoned mine in California is providing scientists with important data that could lead to a possible new weapon to fight global warming.

Massive amounts of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide vacuumed from smokestacks or the air could be permanently locked up in a type of tight, magnesium-rich rock found in the mine, according to scientists. One tricky part is to break up the rock to make room for the greenhouse gas. And that may require violence.

Mercury Pollution’s Oldest Traces Found in Peru

Publication: National Geographic magazine   Date: May 18, 2009   View Article

Demand for the mercury compound vermilion was strong enough to support a large-scale mercury mining industry in the Andes as far back as 1400 B.C., according to a new study.

A bright red pigment, vermilion was used in ancient Andean rituals and is frequently found adorning gold and silver ceremonial objects in ancient burials of kings and nobles in South America.

Biggest Snake Discovered; Was Longer Than a Bus

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: February 4, 2009   View Article

The world’s biggest snake was a massive anaconda-like beast that slithered through steamy tropical rain forests about 60 million years ago, says a new study that describes the ancient giant.

Fossils found in northeastern Colombia’s Cerrejon coal mine indicate the reptile, dubbed Titanoboa cerrejonesis, was at least 42 feet (13 meters) long and weighed 2,500 pounds (1,135 kilograms).

Insects Key Indicators of Water Health, Experts Say

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: February 1, 2007   View Article

Sometimes it’s good to have bugs in your water.

An increase in the diversity and size of water insects is heralding an improvement in the environmental quality of streams that flow into the Carson River in northern California and Nevada.

Oil Platforms, Deep Seas, Mined for New Drugs

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: August 25, 2006   View Article

The thousands of oil and gas platforms in the Gulf of Mexico may soon become a source for blockbuster drugs, researchers say.

“They are all very, very rich in organisms” that could provide ingredients for powerful pharmaceuticals, said Lawrence Rouse, the director of the Coastal Marine Institute at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.

Robots, Virtual Reality Touted as Mine-Safety Solutions

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: January 27, 2006   View Article

Robots and virtual reality are being touted as 21st-century coal-mine canaries in the wake of this month’s U.S. mining deaths.

In the 19th century, underground coal miners carried canaries down into the shafts as their first line of defense against poisonous gases. If the birds keeled over, the miners evacuated.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach