Last week (October 5th), the USGS released its assessment of the mineral potential for the 10 million acres in Sagebrush Focal Areas proposed to be withdrawn from mineral entry for 20 years ostensibly to conserve the Greater Sage Grouse from the impacts of hardrock mining.
American Exploration & Mining Association (AEMA) is looking for geologists to volunteer to analyze the report.
With the possible exception of Wyoming, it is expected that the DOI will take the position that there is not a lot of mineral potential in the SFAs so the withdrawal is not going to impact current or future mineral exploration and production.
On behalf of the industry, AEMA would like to counter that narrative wherever possible. Also, the House and Senate have reached out to AEMA for help in responding to the report.
According to the summary on the USGS website, the percentage of each of the seven Sagebrush Focal Areas and the Nevada additions that have high or moderate mineral potential is as follows:
- Bear River Watershed Area: 17 percent
- North-Central Idaho Area: 7 percent
- North-Central Montana Area: 12 percent
- Nevada Alternative: 2 percent
- Shelden-Hart Mountain National Wildlife Refuge Area: 3 percent
- Southeast Oregon and North-Central Nevada Area: 17 percent
- Southern Idaho and Northern Nevada Area: 15 percent
- Southwestern and South-Central Wyoming Area: 66 percent
If you are able to help with reviewing and analyzing the data, please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Documents to review:
Download the Summary of Findings: (insert summary findings pdf)
Tags: Idaho Mining Association, American Exploration & Mining Association, Sage Grouse, Federal Lands, Mining