mining

A coal mining operation near Gillette, Wyoming. Seattle billionaire Paul Allen is bankrolling a lawsuit over the way the federal government leases public land for coal mining.
KCTS9 Photo/Michael Werner

As the Seattle Seahawks eye another run at the Super Bowl, their owner Paul Allen has chosen to tackle a different challenge: climate change.

Instead of giving money to environmental groups, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft is picking up the tab for a lawsuit against the Department of the Interior, which oversees the leasing of public land to coal mining companies.

ASHLAND, Ore. -- It’s difficult to use water when there’s no water flowing. Or so discovered a UK-based mining company this week when Oregon regulators denied one of the many permits required before development of a nickel mine can get underway in Southern Oregon.

The Red Flat Nickel Corporation wants to use water from a creek in the Kalmiopsis Roadless Area in Southwest Oregon for exploratory drilling. It proposed to siphon off 10 gallons per minute from a small creek.

It's been over three years since a tunnel collapse at a north Idaho silver mine killed miner Larry Marek. Yet federal records show a series of federal penalties issued to the mine's owners still have not been paid.

Oregon Nickel Mine Proposal Runs Into Stiff Opposition

Jul 17, 2014

ASHLAND, Ore. -- A Britain-based company is making preliminary moves that could lead to a 4,000-acre open-pit nickel mine being established in the headwaters of the Smith and Illinois Rivers in southwest Oregon.

The firm says it’s at the beginning of a long process of evaluating whether such a mine would even pencil out. But opponents in Oregon and California are taking no chances. They’re going all-out to kill it in the cradle.

Barbara Ullian minces no words.

“The best time to stop a mine is before it starts,” she says.

This post was updated at 4:00 a.m. ET Thursday:

The death toll in Turkey's worst mining disaster has risen to 282. Rescue teams recovered eight more bodies on Thursday. Hope is fading for the estimated 150 miners trapped below ground.

This post was updated at 7:10 p.m. ET.:

Crowds angered over a mine explosion in western Turkey that claimed at least 274 lives clashed with police on Wednesday near the site of the disaster in Soma.

The high price of silver is bringing one of the Northwest's oldest silver mines back online. The Sunshine Mine in north Idaho is known for one of the worst mining disasters in the nation’s history. It will resume production in late 2014.

The new owner, Sunshine Silver Mines Corp., bought the mine after the previous owner went bankrupt. It happened just in time for silver prices to hit $30 an ounce, and mostly stayed there. The company expects to hire 250 miners once production begins.