Why send a message in a bottle?

Water resources world-wide are threatened by chemical leach industrial mining. In the US alone, mining produces more toxic and hazardous waste than all other industries and municipalities combined! (EPA documents).

TThe 1872 Mining Law encourages this abuse. Tell your representatives in Washington, D.C. to repeal this law. Allowing industrial mining pollution on our public lands and to our waters is political suicide.

Talking points on modern hard rock mining,
and the need to repeal the
"General Mining Law of 1872"

  • Since 1872, U.S. Taxpayers have given away over $240 Billion worth of Gold and Silver to Mining companies for a return of $0. Mining companies have left us with over 500,000 abandoned mines that are estimated to cost taxpayers over $70 Billion to clean up. This law continues to sell our public land, including our National Forests and BLM land for $5 per acre or less. For example, A Canadian Mining Company (Kinross Gold) purchased 154 acres of the Okanogan National Forest for less than $800 in 2006! Our National Forest has become private property of a foreign corporation. No royalties will ever be paid back to the taxpayer, even as this corporation mines over $250,000,000 worth of minerals per year!

  • Thousands of abandoned mines are leaking hazardous waste into streams and rivers that lead to community water systems (over 12,000 miles are currently contaminated). There are no provisions in the 1872 Mining Law to clean up abandoned mines. The burden of this cleanup falls on the taxpayers, while large (sometimes foreign) corporations walk away from their toxic, water polluting messes. Kinross Gold continues to pollute the waters of the Okanogan National Forest while continuing to operate and attempting to expand operations (March, 2013).

  • Mining in the United States generates 3 Billion Tons of solid waste per year-that is more than twice the solid waste produced by all our cities and municipalities combined!

  • About $4 Billion worth of hardrock minerals-gold, copper, silver platinum and others are taken annually from our public land by mining companies, without a penny paid to the U.S. Taxpayer in royalties. No other extractive industry enjoys that special favor.

  • According to this law, the "highest and best use of our public land is mining". We must be able to limit these large scale open pit cyanide leach mines in areas that provide special needs to the American Public. Land managers need to be able to say no! Poorly planned mines have created devastating results all over the world. The American public can no longer be held hostage by this law.

In short, we need to stop selling our public land for less than $5 per acre. Clean up the 500,000 abandoned mines in the U.S. Give public land managers the right to say no. Require complete cleanup of modern mining facilities including back-filling of pits.

Together we can prevent the continued destruction of our public lands. Stop the giveaway of our natural resources and protect our children's heritage. We need to protect our water resources so we will provide clean water to drink to our future generations.