Eastern Oregon Mining Association
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- Eastern Oregon Mining Association
- 20130602

JUNE 2013 Newsletter
Volume 285

The meetings are held on the first Friday of the month. The next meeting is Friday, JUNE 7th at the Baker City Hall. The building is located at 1st and Auburn Streets in Baker City. The Board meeting starts at 6:00PM, and the general meeting starts at 6:30PM.

The Eastern Oregon Mining Association, along with the Waldo Mining District, is selling tickets for the drawing on a ½ pound of gold. The 2nd Preliminary Drawing will be at the Miner’s Jubilee on July 21, 2013. The big Final Drawing with a Grand Prize of 1/2 Pound of Gold in the spring of 2014. All Entries in the Preliminary Drawings are eligible to win in all subsequent Drawings (including the Final Drawing). $5.00 per Entry, or Six Entries for $25.00.

Need not be present to win! So, fill out the tickets in the back of the newsletter and send them in to Drawing, PO Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814. Your tickets will be good for each and every drawing up to the final one of the 1/2 pound of gold. Your money goes to help miners continue litigation on miner’s rights. Thank you for all your support..... Chuck Chase

“Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when everybody stands around reloading”- (Thomas Jefferson, 1743-1826, third American President).

For all of you who dropped everything to join the fight for our right to mine in Oregon by congregating on the Capitol steps, making phone calls, writing letters and sending e-mails to our legislators in support of the pro-mining bills and against the anti-mining bills, things probably seem pretty quiet right now. But, make no mistake, the fight for our right to mine in Oregon will not be over until SB401 (designates scenic waterways and prohibits suction dredge mining) and SB838 (prohibits suction dredge mining and off-channel mining within 300 feet of certain waterways) are dead. Be ready for the next assault from Salem on our right to mine.

HB2841 is a win-win bill that should be passed into law. This bill is really a no-brainer. It requires state agencies, such as DEQ, to consult with interested persons, such as the suction dredge miners, in order for the agency to gain a knowledge of the industry they are regulating, before they make rules and issue permits that may adversely affect these miners.

There is currently a requirement in State law for a public process, but this is very different than a consultation process. There is a need to clarify issues and try to resolve disputes early on, both of which will result in fewer issues being litigated. Passage of this bill will save both the State and the miners legal fees, and will give the regulating agencies a better understanding of the rights that miners do have when mining on federal lands.

A big THANK YOU goes out to Northwest Mining Association for their continued support of the small scale mining industry during this legislative session. Matt Ellsworth will be back in Salem the week of June 10th meeting with Gary Lynch of DOGAMI and Rich Angstrom, lobbyist for the aggregate industry, to convince our legislators that the anti-mining bills that were recently introduced in the Senate, need to die without a hearing in the Democratically controlled Ways and Means committee. Passage of SB401 (designates scenic waterways and prohibits suction dredge mining) and SB838 (prohibits suction dredge mining and off-channel mining within 300 feet of certain waterways) would crippled our mining industry.
EOMA is a member of NWMA, and Chuck Chase and I and a few other board members are individual members. If anyone out there wants to become a member, all it takes is a check, along with the enclosed application. You will get a monthly newsletter, and membership gives you access to attorneys and professionals who understand locatable mining. NWMA has done a lot to help the small scale mining industry in Oregon, we miners need to support them.
BBC News reports that UK Seabed Resources has joined the rush to exploit minerals in the depths of the oceans. It has plans for a major prospecting operation in the Pacific. The company says surveys have revealed large numbers of nodules. These are small lumps of rock rich in valuable metals and they are lying on the ocean floor south of Hawaii and west of Mexico.

An expedition is planned for this summer to assess the potential environmental impact of extracting the nodules. The area of seabed to be explored is twice the size of Wales and 4,000 meters deep.

Under the UN’s Convention on the Law of the Sea, mining rights on the ocean floor are controlled by the International Seabed Authority, which since 2001 has issued 13 licenses, with another six possible.

Many miners are not aware that Oregon Water Resources Department requires miners drilling holes more than 18 feet deep but less than 50 feet deep to submit a geotechnical hole report for each hole drilled. The cost is $25 for the first hole, and $10 for each additional hole if drilled within the next 10 day period. Drill holes over 50 feet in depth require an exploration permit from Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) and thus, OWRD is not directly involved with deep drilling.

A recent settlement agreement between federal land management agencies and environmental litigators over how to protect a slew of species in northwestern forests was struck down by the 9th Circuit Court, which ruled that the settlement violated federal laws requiring public participation for major rule changes.
The court’s ruling has received plaudits from the logging and ranching industries, which have strongly criticized environmental litigators’ practice of cutting deals with federal agencies by suing the agencies and then modifying agency rules in closed-door settlement agreements—a tactic commonly known as “sue and settle.”
“That was a sweetheart deal between the environmental organization and the agency,” said Ann Forest Burns, vice president of the American Forest Resource Council (AFRC). “We’re hoping that this is a wake-up call, and will stiffen the spine of the agencies to make sure that the public processes are followed.”
In the case in question, 11 environmental groups, including Conservation Northwest, Oregon Wild, and the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), sued the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and U.S Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) over a 2007 joint agency decision to eliminate “survey and manage” standards from the Northwest Forest Plan, which governs the management of over 24.5 million acres of forest stretching from San Francisco to the Canadian border. The standards outline management for nearly 400 lesser-known species— such as lichens, fungi, slugs and arthropods—defined as “ecologically crucial.”
D.R. Johnson Lumber Co., interveners in the case, appealed the decision, claiming that the settlement had shut them and other stakeholders out of the rule-making process.
In its April 25 ruling, the 9th Circuit agreed, stating that the district court had committed an “abuse of discretion;” since the settlement had created new survey and management standards—essentially amending the Northwest Forest Plan—it had side-stepped statutory public input requirements for new rule making.
Though it remains to be seen exactly how this recent ruling will affect litigation strategies against federal agencies, timber and grazing interests are optimistic that the decision will make it harder for environmental groups to cut deals like the now notorious 2011 settlement between CBD and USFWS, which required USFWS to fast-track endangered listing decisions on 757 species, including the greater sage grouse and Mexican grey wolf. It is also unclear whether previous settlements that involved substantive rulemaking changes could be challenged anew given the 9th Circuit’s opinion.
At very least, Burns of AFRC is optimistic that future settlements will leave room for the public to weigh in. “We hope that since the Circuit has decided it, this is going to apply throughout the 9th Circuit and that we will stop having quite so many instances where the environmental organizations, sue, [then] settle without any input through the public process.”
The demand for silver has increased substantially over the past two decades and is expected to soar to a new record level in the coming year. Industry’s widening use of the precious metal is expected to average more than 483 million ounces from 2012 to 2014, a level 53 percent greater than the average annual industrial fabrication demand of 313.4 million ounces from 1992 to 2001. Silver provides a unique combination of properties that make it ideal for applications in industries ranging from health and medicine to electronics, communications, solar power, batteries, superconductors, and computers.
For more information on this article contact Chuck Chase at 541-523-3285

As you probably already know from the last EOMA Newsletter, the Forest Service canceled our long standing 30 year agreement with the Forest Service to guarantee reclamation for miners for up to $1,500 for small operations and $3,000 for good operators who qualified. Over the years, we have reclaimed sites for miners who didn’t even belong to the EOMA, let alone have a bond with us. We did this work, not because of a bonding obligation, but because it was the right thing to do.
The Forest Service is adamant that they must have the cash available in case a miner defaults. BLM’s regulations have always required the miner to bond with cash. Thus, EOMA is currently working on an alternative to the MOU. Our idea is for EOMA to put in a cash assignment as a third party along with the Forest or BLM and the miner. There will be a annual charge paid to EOMA to keep the bond current. If the miner defaults on his or her reclamation, just like before, EOMA would step in and do the reclamation, We still need to work out the details with the Board of Directors and the Forest Service and BLM, but I think it is doable.
I have already talked to the Banner Bank and they didn’t see a problem, so long as the miner has a checking account and does business with them. Banner Bank already has cash deposits for reclamation and equipment removal bonds from several miners.
For those of you who have paid your 2013 bond fees for this year, you have two options. If you want to leave your 2013 bond money in the bonding pool to help fund a future bonding option, you do not need to do anything. If you want the EOMA to return your 2013 bonding remittance, give us a call, or send us a request by mail with your name and address and we will gladly refund your bonding fees for this year.

In the long history of precious metals, the past few weeks have been one for the record books. Gold has plunged to some of its lowest levels in over two years and suffered its biggest one day decline in over 30 years. While conventional news outlets have been busy drafting the Last Will and Testament of the world’s most valued metal, gold has been busy breaking sales records.

American Gold Eagle coins are among the United States’ only investment-grade bullion coins and the most highly sought after. According to the Mint, demand for the one-tenth ounce coin has increased 118 percent over this same time last year. The smaller gold coin contains .1000 gold troy ounce and like all American Eagles is backed by the US government for weight and gold content. The American Gold Eagle series is an investment benchmark that is known around the world and widely traded in global markets.
Silver holds a unique position as both an investment and an industrial metal and current demand is also staggering. Silver is prized for its many uses including jewelry, artwork, medicine, tableware, photography and, of course, currency. A critical conduit of the digital age, silver is also a vital component of smart phones, computers, robotics, circuit boards, solar panels, and satellites. In the last 60 years, our insatiable appetite for electronics has consumed 5000 years of silver, pushing world inventory to its lowest level in 200 years. Twice already in 2013, the US Mint has also halted production of the American Silver Eagle due to inventory shortages.

Gold’s recent price drop has resulted in a flood of seasoned investors looking to improve their position in gold as well as new investors seeking to own the world’s most tangible asset for the very first time. Amazingly, two tons of gold was sold on April 17th alone, and demand remains at unprecedented levels.
Bullion dealers across the US are reporting colossal silver sales and depleted private mints. The world’s silver supply could be exhausted as soon as 2021.

These medallions are beautiful proof grade one ounce silver medallions with the addition of real gold “nuggets” in the pan. We still have a limited supply of 2012 medallions. These medallions are currently selling for $50 dollars apiece plus $5.00 shipping and handling and insurance. These prices are subject to change. You can order a 2013 medallion from the EOMA website, and pay by pay-pal. Or, you can send $50 plus $5.00 shipping and handling to EOMA, Medallions, PO Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814, or call Bobbie at 541-523-3285. Be sure to specify whether you want a 2012 or 2013 medallion.

Growing platinum and palladium? Why not, say researchers at the University of British Columbia. The ambitious project, a collaboration between researchers at UBC, the University of York (in the U.K.), Massey University in New Zealand and Yale looks to draw platinum and palladium out of mine tailings via plants in a process known as phytomining.
“It’s a really unique project and probably way out there in terms of if it’s ever going to be practical,” says John Meech – a Mining Engineering Professor and head of UBC’s Centre for Environmental Research in Minerals, Metals, and Materials.
But the project – dubbed PHYTOCAT – might not be that farfetched given that the G8 Research Councils Initiative on Multilateral Research Funding has thrown $1.4 million into the study.
“(UBC’s) function is to identify target sites where we could ‘grow’ platinum palladium around the world, we’ve already started that,” adds Meech.
But the early groundwork for the project started in 2003.
“We did a project in Brazil where we planted a whole bunch of different types of plants species on a waste rock pile that was about 1.5 parts per million (PPM) gold,” says Meech. “We were able to concentrate the gold in the plants to about 70 PPM so that’s a pretty impressive upgrade.”
Researchers at York (U.K.) read the papers published by Meech and co. regarding the Brazil project, as it fit with their own research about naturally-derived catalysts for vehicles.
“People got pretty interested in the concept of recovering precious metals from old waste dumps,” adds Meech.
The mining engineering professor says although the idea of scaling the project up to a point where it is economically viable is far off – it’s a highly fascinating study.
As part of the phytomining research, the team will study “hyperaccumulators” – 400 species from more than 40 plant families – which have evolved a resistance to specific metals and “can accumulate relatively large amounts of these metals.” Willow, corn and mustard are prime examples.
Once absorbed, the metals form nano-scale clusters can be used directly as a “naturally-derived catalyst to control the emissions in vehicles.” As it stands, many catalysts from scrapped vehicles are recycled but Meech says, “All of that stuff could be bypassed – which means that the cost of producing the catalysts could be significantly reduced.”
At a time when PGMs are in high demand, off-beat technologies like phytomining signify a more sustainable approach to requiring resources. For more information on this article contact Chuck Chase at 541-523-3285

We are now offering a new 18 month EOMA Calendar with historical mining pictures. It also has date reminders to help you keep your claim valid. It also has addresses and phone numbers of the agencies you have to deal with. So support the EOMA by ordering your calendar now for the price of $10 each, or three for $29 bucks, plus a dollar for each calendar for shipping. There is an order form in the back of the newsletter. You can also call Chuck Chase at 541-523-3285.

Don Gonzales, Vale District BLM Director, came up with the idea of the Round Table format, and the quarterly meetings have been quite informative. Round Table participants come from EOMA, BLM, Forest Service, Baker County and Senator Wyden, Representative Walden and Senator Merkley’s offices. The new Baker BLM Field Office manager, Lori Wood, and Field Office geologist, Steve Flock, were among first time participants from BLM. Melissa Swain, on detail to the Forest Service to compute reclamation bonds, was also present. The public is invited to attend these discussions and it is a good opportunity to exchange ideas.
BLM reported that Calico is completing their background studies for DOGAMI, and BLM is working with the company on road access across BLM. Sage grouse continue to be an issue on BLM, and there is a possibility that exploration in core habitat will take a full plan of operation, rather than a notice. BLM has neither the funds, nor the personnel to do this level of analysis. Tim Barnes in Prineville, will help set the direction that BLM will take on the sage grouse issue.
The Forest Service has decided to use the BLM bonding spreadsheet to compute reclamation bonds on the forest. This will be consistent with the way BLM computes bonds. The Granite EIS covers 30 plans of operation. When EOMA submitted their FOIA two months ago, the document had not been started. Now, it was reported, chapters #1 and #2 are completed in draft form, chapter #3 is in progress. This is amazing progress, and hopefully the EIS will be completed ahead of schedule. A problem was discussed, that some of the plans of operation submitted 10 years ago are no longer in the analysis. Some plans may have been dropped by the miners and there is a possibility that the Forest Service may have lost some of the plans since it has been so long since the analysis began. Ranger Tomac stated he would find out what plans were included, but stated that if a plan was not in the current analysis, it was too late to include it. Ranger Tomac stated that the NFBR EIS is at Federal District Court, where the judge must decide if the Forest Service did an adequate job analyzing the 42 plans of operation.
The EOMA/Forest Service bonding MOU was a big topic of discussion. Thirty years of success, and now it has been cancelled by the Forest Service. John Lawrence reiterated that he wanted to work with the miners, but with increasing scrutiny of Forest Service budgets, and other financial matters, he was unable to continue the MOU, but instead must have each miner post a cash bond.
The advertising listings are only $1 per month to get your ad listed below. Send your ad to: EOMA, Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814 along with your remittance for each month you want us to run your ad. The number next to your ad is how many months your ad will run.

The Gold Spinner System:(5) Save that ultrafine gold with this high gravity separator. It runs on 12volt, only weighs 45 pounds, is easy to set up and run, and can run all day long without a clean up. This is a must see, and sells for only $1304. E-mail Ted at tedcraghead@gmail.com. See Video on UTube, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAP5CMdIjFs
Or come on down and take a look at 10415 HWY 95, Payette, ID 83661.

CLAIMS FOR SALE :(5)Two claims starting on the Burnt River and running up Clarks Creek. The Gold Danser is an eighty acre claim, with a lot of un-worked placer and good water. The Gold Danser II contains forty acres on Clarks Creek, and has had Geophysical Magnetometer mapping done on it, showing a large buried placer structure running through the claim. Both of these claims are accessed on year round county roads. $35,000 for both. Call: 541-523-3285, or Cell: 541-310-8510.