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donations needed for mining studies ( 21:21:09 MonSep 8 2008 )


September, 2008


For many years, the small miners and in particular the suction dredge miners have complained about the lack of unbiased sound science available to refute the garbage science that is being used by government agencies to regulate us to near extinction. The mining community has been questioning why we or “someone” doesn’t do unbiased studies of our own on the rivers and streams open to suction dredge mining. The answer has almost always been, “it costs too much”, and none of us believed the unity was there in the community to support any such efforts.

It is now time that we start doing these studies and bring about the truth. Recent events in California have brought the situation to the boiling point… and unless the suction dredge mining community steps up to the plate and supports the needed study/ies, we will all be at the mercy of the agencies, tribes, and the environmentalists. If we lose California, it will only be a matter of time before we lose the other states.

With the proper personnel retained to do these studies and with the mining community’s support, we can lay many of the negative rumors to rest. And, of equal importance start addressing the true environmental benefits that the suction dredging has to offer. Luckily, two retired U.S. EPA Research Scientists have volunteered their time and expertise to do these much needed studies, but even so, funding is needed for such expenses as travel, lodging, equipment, lab analysis, etc..

The first study that we feel that should be address is California Water Resources Control Board (CWRCB) study on the detrimental affect of suction dredging and Mercury. The CWRCB study claims that a 4” suction dredge only collected 98% of the mercury it sucked up, and lost 2% over the end of the dredge with the tailings… and then concluded that the 2% lost is more dangerous than the benefit of removing the 98%! The study claims that it is better to just leave the Mercury in place! Those who have had an opportunity to read the study have identified numerous problems with the study, and due to the lack of any real scientific methodology, any results are dubious at best. Unfortunately, no other studies exist. And worse, environmentalists, tribes, and state legislators & agencies have adopted this study as gospel, and are planning to use it to shut down and prohibit suction dredge mining at least in areas containing Mercury, and possibly in the whole state.

Recognizing this immediate danger, various mining organizations and individuals from Oregon and California, and we hope other states, are joining forces to fund these necessary studies. Public Lands for the People (PLP) has agreed to be the lead organization in these efforts… and for this purpose, PLP has set up an exclusive account so that 100% of all donations earmarked for “Scientific Studies” will be spent solely for this purpose.

Our first project (the Mercury Study) has already started with a $1,000 donation from Mike Higbee of the Armadillo Mining Shop in Oregon. With this donation, the fund has made the down payment of $1,000 to the two retired Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists to duplicate the CWRCB study on Mercury for the purpose of showing the flaws in the agency paper and to provide bona fide scientific data – for a change!

PLP has agreed to have all donations earmarked for “Scientific Studies” sent to the scientists where they can draw from it as needed for the Mercury Study, and hopefully future studies.

PLP is a non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible.


Jerry Hobbs – President, PLP
Tom Kitchar – President, WMD


PLP C/O BH Wetherby
Science Study Funds
3700 Santa Carlotta
La Crescenta, Ca. 91214

Or go to the home page at the bottom left side of the page.

Thank You.


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