Idaho mining region revived
Idaho was once one of the most significant mining regions in North America. Its development began well over 150 years ago during the Gold Rush, and it remains today one of the world’s most important producers of precious metals. That said, the excavation of gold and silver has been on the back burner during the recent decades due to the low market prices. Now things are changing fast, though, as the market prices have improved significantly from the lows of the turn of the century and confidence is rising. It has been realized that Idaho hosts numerous potential deposits, which can be extracted using sustainable and modern mining and processing methods. The potential to use new technologies and procedures in prospecting and mining has further increased interest in the region among several companies.
Endomines entered the Idaho gold business in early 2018 by acquiring five gold assets near the small town of Elk City in the mining districts of Orogrande and Warren. The sites known as Friday, Rescue, Kimberly, Buffalo Gulch, and Deadwood are known to contain over 500,000 ounces of gold, in addition to which the exploration potential in the region is significant. Construction and commissioning of the Friday mine is already well under way, and the other four projects are progressing through further exploration and permitting.
Other mining and exploration companies have also made significant investments in the area, aiming to revitalize and develop existing mining sites as well as develop new ones. One of the factors driving this new growth in the region is the State support for the industry, both in terms of legislation and the handling of permitting processes. The positive political atmosphere and support from government provide for stability and predictability, which are crucial factors considering the sizable investments required to construct a mine. Accordingly, established legislative procedures and case law are considered essential prerequisites from the perspective of potential investors participating in development of the industry. The State has also provided additional support for prospectors by conducting geological surveys.
The re-invigoration of mining operations has had a visible impact in the region’s economic status, which has long been on a downward trend. Mining has been an essential part of Idaho’s DNA, so the new business growth has widely increased optimism in the local communities and people. The prevailing attitude toward mining is, in general, very positive amongst the local population.