The hardrock mining industry owns gold, silver, and other precious metals and minerals beneath an estimated 2,508,276 acres of U.S. public land in Nevada, resources worth millions of dollars a year, acquired for as little as $0.84 per acre and held in perpetuity for a yearly rental fee as low as $0.62 an acre. Under a 132-year-old law originally intended to spur development of the West, an industry dominated by a handful of multinational corporations pays no federal royalties, and leaves behind a landscape of dramatically diminished value, scarred with tunnels, pits, and toxic waste piles.
|Quick facts about mining claims in Nevada|
Total number of claim-holders: 4,437
Acres of public land claimed by the mining industry, estimated: 2,508,276 (1 of every 50 acres in Nevada)
Dollars paid for each acre: as little as $0.84, and as little as $0.62 yearly rental fee
Reimbursement to the federal government for gold, silver and other precious metals taken from public land: $0
Companies owning minerals on at least 10,000 public acres: 77
Percentage of claims held by foreign companies: 32%
Land area ever claimed by the mining industry nationally, estimated: 79 million acres (the size of New Mexico)
EWG analysis of data compiled by the Bureau of Land Management.
Companies have been consolidated to account for subsidiaries. View this table without consolidation.
|Company/Individual||Headquarters||Number of Claims||Acreage Claimed||Date(s) Filed|
|1||Newmont Mining Corp||Denver, CO||16,726||329,634||1886 to 2003|
|2||Placer Dome Inc||World HQ in Canada||13,352||260,518||1886 to 2003|
|3||Rio Tinto Limited||World HQ in Australia||7,663||147,455||1886 to 2003|
|4||Barrick Gold Corporation||World HQ in Canada||5,205||114,559||1905 to 2003|
|5||Kinross||World HQ in Canada||3,398||80,995||1905 to 2003|
|6||Carl Pescio||Elko, NV||2,277||46,996||1994 to 2003|
|7||Anglo American Mining||World HQ in UK||2,103||43,448||1951 to 2003|
|8||Seabridge Gold Corp||World HQ in Canada||2,059||42,539||2002 to 2003|
|9||Noranda Expl Inc||World HQ in Canada||1,979||39,079||1913 to 2000|
|10||Meridian Gold Company||Reno, NV||1,908||39,075||1951 to 2000|
|See all claim holders in Nevada|
Some of the claimants in this table may be in partnership with other individuals or companies with a claim to the same land.
|County||Number of Claims||Estimated Acreage|
|8||White Pine County||7,563||149,222||details||map|
|See all counties|
|Name of Mine||Location of Mine||Mine Status||Metal Mined||Owner or Parent Company of Owner|
|Cortez (pipeline) Gold Mine||Lander County, NV||Open||Gold||Placer Dome US Inc|
|Equatorial Tonopah||Nye County, NV||Closed||Copper Ore||Equitorial Mining Limited|
|Meikle (goldstrike, Purple Vein ) Gold Mine||Eureka County, NV||Open||Gold||Barrick Gold Corporation|
|Denton Rawhide||Mineral County, NV||Closed||Gold||Rio Tinto Limited|
|Phoenix||Pershing County, NV||Proposed||Gold||Newmont Mining Corp|
|Ruby Hill Gold Mine||Eureka County, NV||Closed||Gold||Barrick Gold Corporation|
|Mule Canyon||Lander County, NV||Closed||Gold||Newmont Mining Corp|
|Golden Phoenix Mineral Ridge||Esmeralda County, NV||Suspended||Gold||Golden Phoenix Minerals, Inc|
|Rochester Mine||Pershing County, NV||Open||Silver ores||Coeur D'Alene Mines Corp|
|Trenton Canyon||Humboldt County, NV||Open||Gold||Newmont Mining Corp|
|See more mines in Nevada|
Source: EWG analysis.
Source: EWG analysis of Bureau of Land Management's Land and Mineral Records 2000 (LR2000) data system. For claims, acreages are estimated based on maximum allowable size of claims. For patents, acreages are taken directly from the LR2000 database where available, and are estimated based on maximum allowable size of claim that preceded the patent where acreages are not noted in LR2000. All notices are assumed to be five acres in size, and the size of plans are calculated directly as the size of the land represented by the legal land description in the LR2000 database. The acreages we estimate through these methods would tend to overestimate the actual amount. We welcome corrections here, and would welcome a federal data management system that included the acreages involved in these important federal land transactions.