Lecture: Mineral Exploration

Speaker: Mark Howson, Consultant Mining Geologist

Entry Fee

Members: Free

Visitors: £5 on the door at BRLSI or book via Eventbrite to access on Zoom

Date and Time

19:30 -


Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, 16-18 Queen Square, Bath BA1 2HN

Lecture Description

Extracting the metals and minerals that we use in our lives depends on their geology, whose research underpins great mountains of endeavour, which may cost multi- millions or billions of dollars, up to 10 years before even the first product is sold. While success can bring huge profits, the losses can also be huge when things go wrong. So, management of risk, especially the risk of geological misinformation, is vital to assure the confidence of those who invest in the industry. In the second half of the last century a series of mining investment disasters occurred, especially in Australasia, Canada, and the USA. Some were cases of fraud, but others involved subtleties in geology and extractive technology that were too arcane to be understood outside the industry. Mining industry professionals, led by geologists, were prompted to self-regulate by producing and updating a series of national standards or codes for public reporting of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves, collectively termed mineral assets. This talk mainly focusses firstly on some cases where things went wrong, and then considers how to apply good practice. Mark Howson’s talk relates several case examples of some of these aspects, especially geological details, drawn from his career.

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