Bureau of Mines / Minerals yearbook: Area reports: domestic 1978-79
Year 1978-79, Volume 2 (1978-1979)
Arndt, Robert H.
Missouri, pp. 299-314 PDF (1.9 MB)
299The Mineral Industry of Missouri This chapter has been prepared under a Memorandum of Understanding between the Bureau of Mines, U.S. Department of the Interior, and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geology and Land Survey, for collecting information on all nonfuel minerals. By Robert H. Arndt' A new record was established for nonfuel minerals produced in Missouri when mineral output in 1979 was valued at $1.2 billion. Massive increases occurred in the values of produced portland cement, clays, lime, copper, lead, silver, zinc, and usable iron ore. The total value of nonfuel mineral production in 1978 was split about equally between metals and nonmetals. Metals were dominant in 1979. Output of all metals increased in 1979. Clays were the only nonmetal enjoying increased output. Cement, lime, sand and gravel, and stone, all significant construction materials, were produced in reduced quantities, which caused a reduction in the number of stone and sand and gravel producers and operations and gave substance to a recession in construction in 1979. Viburnum No. 27 lead mine of St. Joe Minerals Corp. (St. Joe) was closed because of ore depletion. St. Joe's Pea Ridge iron mine and pellet plant, closed as uneconomic in 1977, was reorganized as Pea Ridge Iron Ore Co., Inc., and reopened in June 1979. Kennecott Copper Corp. announced plans for expanding the Ozark Lead Co. operations on Sweetwater Branch and the development of the new Milhiken mine. Strikes shut down mining, milling, and smelting activities at the Buick mine of the AMAX Lead Co. of Missouri in 1978 and at Ozark Lead Co.'s Sweetwater Branch mine in 1979, with resulting curtailment of lead production. Other consequences were inconveniences to Cominco American, Inc., which utilized the Buick smelting facilities, and an interruption of the lead concentrate supply for ASARCO's smelter at Glover. Noranda Aluminum, Inc., shut down its plant at New Madrid for almost 2 months in early 1978 because of a power shortage. Exploration for lead deposits extended southward from the Viburnum trend into parts of Shannon, Carter, Oregon, Ripley, and Butler Counties. Increased prices for cobalt and nickel resulted in renewed testing and development of formerly mined and unmined leadcobalt-nickel deposits near Fredericktown in Madison County. Shortages of cement in 1978 influenced the State to bring price-fixing charges against 15 cement firms and join with other States in a similar suit being tried in Federal court in Arizona. Environmental and regulatory problems affecting mining drew considerable public attention. Alpha Portland Industries, Inc., continued in litigation over a permit to dredge sand and gravel from the Meramec River valley in St. Louis County. The U.S. Forest Service Roadless Area Review and Evaluation (RARE II) was completed. The review involved possible designation of
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