The best value for my mining money on the web right now is the new magazine called Montana Mining. Actually it is free for download at this link

Governor Brian Schweitzer summarizes the current mining situation in the state in his opening editorial:

As we look at natural resource development in Montana, we cannot be driven by the political extremes. The clash between those who want to “build a fence around Montana,” and those who would do “rip and run” uncontrolled development must not stymie our future development. The large majority of Montanans support development as long as it is done right – in a manner that does not destroy our high quality of life. New technologies, combined with new market demands, provide an opportunity for mineral and coal development that has not been present for some time. We must take advantage of this window of opportunity to create the growth Montanans want – and the jobs they deserve. Today’s Montana mining operations can operate, and are operating, in an environmentally responsible manner. As long as that is the case, the state will support our historical resource economy. Natural resource development is not the province of just one political party. That is revealed by the fact that over the last 50 years, Montana’s growth in coal development took place under three Democratic governors, as illustrated by the chart on this page. With nearly a third of the nation’s coal reserves and eight percent of the world’s reserves, Montana’s economy stands to gain tremendously from this increased interest in the potential for coal. I will carry on the long tradition of Democratic governors and continue to work to expand coal development in Montana.

Richard Opper, Director, Montana Department of Environmental Quality weights in with these thoughts:

As an extractive industry, it must address its impacts to Montana’s air, land, and water resources. Like other mineral-rich states, Montana has some eye-catching reclamation success stories. But sadly, our state also bears too many scars from a time when we knew less about acid drainage, inadequately bonded mines, or placed too much trust in operators who had no interest in building futures for communities as they were building personal wealth. Part of my job it to ensure that we acquire no more such scars. The good news for the state is that I believe the Montana Mining Association is committed to this same goal.

Tim Smith, past president of the Montana Mining Association put it thus:

Not only have we adopted a new professional image, but we are getting the truth out about what the mining industry means to local and state economies, and why mining is necessary for virtually everything that contributes to our quality of life. The association understands that, in order to mine, the industry must go beyond obtaining the necessary permits, it needs a social license. It must show that, not only will it bring wealth and jobs to an area, it will provide for continued growth and economic prosperity long after the mine is reclaimed.

With well written and informative articles on Rock Creek Mine, Golden Sunlight Mine, Stillwater, the Montanore Project, and the Montana Tech’s School on Mines & Engineering, this is a magazine well worth while downloading and reading.