Mining industry Introduction (by: Jujhar Jhajj)

Mining is the process of extraction of minerals and ores that come from underground and the depths of our earth.Majority of the coal mines in Canada can be found in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia. The resources that are extracted are used in our everyday lives thus making mining an important industry.Ores that are gained through mining include metals , coal, oil shale, gemstones, rock salt, clay, gravel, copper, gold silver, and various other minerals.

a coal mine

EXTRACTION

Surface mining is when you remove ore deposits that are near the surface. When there is a huge ore deposits the method known as open pit mining is used. They create a large pit and take out any earth that does not consist of any ore and this earth is put to the side as they continue to dig. The material that is not consistent of ore is called overburden. When there is just the ore and the overburden is cleared away they use explosives such as dynamite to extract the ore and break it up when it is being removed from the ground.

To extract the minerals deep deep underground such as thousands of feet deep they use a method known as subsurface mining. They create tunnels that vary and depend which can sometimes be created in one of the two directions horizontally or vertically. These tunnels are heavily reinforced to make sure it doesn't collapse and to remove the minerals there are a number of different ways. You can use explosives to blast the minerals out of the earth and send the ore back up that tunnels or you can use longwall mining which is when you can shear the coal out of the walls and send it up on a conveyor belt and solution mining where you use hot water and put it into the ore which dissolves the ore and when it finally dissolves air is pushed into it where it is then bubbled to the surface.

http://study.com/academy/lesson/extraction-processing-of-minerals-surface-mining-subsurface-mining-smelting.html -this is a link to a website with a video that explains the process of mining extraction.

WHAT IS COAL USED FOR

Coal is a black sedimentary rock. It is used primarily for the sole purpose of providing fuel/energy and is used to create fuel in various of ways. It can create electricity through the process of burning the coal. It also creates heat through a process known as combustion which is a chemical reaction. The process of creating electricity is done by crushing then burning the coal in a furnace which creates steam where the steam is then used to spin the turbines of a generator which produces electricity.

a coal factory that is generating electricity

EXPORTING AND JOBS

Canada has over 3000 suppliers in mining supplying. In 2012 canada made around 60 million tons of coal. The total amount of exports made in this industry in 2015 was 37,345.The mining industry provides around 3.7 million jobs in canada and around 20 million people work in small scale mining which is when mining using less expensive and smaller equipment and technology. In 2011 mining industry provided around 126,000 in millions of chained dollars while in 2015 it provided around 134 000.

people who work to extract the coal

BENEFITS

how does the mining industry help canada (benefits)?

-it provides jobs for people

-it has an economic benefit

-we can create manufactured goods from the resources

-it allows us to trade resources with other countries which could be beneficial towards our economy.

Almost every item you touch in your everyday life comes from minerals from the mining industry. For example in cell phones, jewelry, transportation vehicles, and more.

some of the things in this picture have minerals in them

ISSUES TOWARDS EXTRACTION

There are many issues relating to the extraction of coal and using it which majority of these problems are environmental issues that affect the environment. Some issues that occur are contaminated water, when the coal is burned the gas contributes to greenhouse gases, deforestation occurs, it destroys land when the land is dug to get the coal, it destroys wildlife habitats. When we mine and dig into the earth the contaminants like harmful minerals and metals mix in with the mining wastewater and this seeps through the water table contaminating the groundwater. A problem with extraction is that when they extract the coal out of the ground in strip mining it lowers the groundwater levels because to extract the coal they need to pump and take out the groundwater from the mine. This causes all the ecosystems around the mine to dry up and it causes soil erosion and changes the land around it.

water that is contaminated by mining

WAYS TO BE SUSTAINABLE

Instead of using surface water we can reduce the damage by using groundwater which would decrease the quantity and quality of the water in aquatic ecosystems which means the animals have a better living environment which would help the impact on the surrounding ecosystems like soil erosion and dry land as well as better water. Some ways to reduce the impact of mining is to try and limit/reduce the amount of waste, reducing the amount of of land damage, and minimizing the amount of energy and water used to extract the coal.

I think that in development in human history there has been quite some some change and now that we are starting to comprehend our mistakes we are trying to correct them by developing new ways to create a way to extract the minerals without harming the environment and keeping it sustainable. I think what's being done is somewhat effective although there is a lot we can improve on for the near future.

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