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Mining claims in Oregon

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The hardrock mining industry owns gold, silver, and other precious metals and minerals beneath an estimated 191,391 acres of U.S. public land in Oregon, 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 Oregon

• Total number of claim-holders: 2,766

• Acres of public land claimed by the mining industry, estimated: 191,391 (About the size of Crater Lake National Park)

• 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

• 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.


Top Mining Claim Owners in Oregon Ranked by Acres Claimed

Companies have been consolidated to account for subsidiaries. View this table without consolidation.

 Company/IndividualHeadquartersNumber of ClaimsAcreage ClaimedDate(s) Filed
1 Glen Teague Adrian, OR 52 7,596 1991 to 2002
2 Marie Teague Adrian, OR 52 7,596 1991 to 2002
3 Linda Gustavson Grand View, ID 47 7,520 1993 to 2002
4 Shawn Connell unknown 47 7,520 1993 to 2002
5 Irene Connell unknown 47 7,520 1993 to 2002
6 April Tyner unknown 47 7,520 1993 to 2002
7 Michael Tyner unknown 47 7,520 1993 to 2002
8 Arva Hunt unknown 46 7,360 1993 to 2002
9 Teague Mineral Prod Adrian, OR 49 5,966 1973 to 1994
10 Newmont Mining Corp Denver, CO 264 5,454 2003
See all claim holders in Oregon

Some of the claimants in this table may be in partnership with other individuals or companies with a claim to the same land.

 

Counties in Oregon Ranked by Acres Claimed

 CountyNumber of ClaimsEstimated Acreage  
1 Malheur County 1,199 39,943 details map
2 Josephine County 1,049 38,669 details map
3 Baker County 1,051 37,252 details map
4 Grant County 342 12,519 details map
5 Jackson County 338 10,773 details map
6 Lake County 409 9,822 details map
7 Douglas County 262 8,098 details map
8 Harney County 378 7,919 details map
9 Lane County 252 7,330 details map
10 Curry County 136 6,564 details map
See all counties

 

Examples of Mines in Oregon

Name of MineLocation of MineMine StatusMetal MinedOwner or Parent Company of Owner
Ken Snyder MineWallowa County, NVOpenGoldNormandy Midas Operations, Inc.

Source: EWG analysis.

 

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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.