October 2014

Editor's letter

Approach with caution

By Ryan Bergen

Ryan Bergen “China is so vast and contradictory – home to one-fifth of humanity, with an income gap wider than that between New York and Ghana — that we are tempted to simplify it by resorting to the archetypes that capture one side or another.”

The passage above belongs to Evan Osnos, who spent the last eight years reporting and writing from China. There are easy ways to explain the cultural and economic identity of the country but, the writer cautions, these explanations that rely on the standard tropes of collectivism, Confucianism and dragons will not be very useful.

So, while I encourage you to read our special report on China, be warned that you will not find the key to understanding Chinese society, nor predictions of China’s return to annual growth rates of 14 per cent. There are, however, articles, such as Lu Jing’s account of one mining team’s efforts to modernize its operations and mitigate some of the environmental impacts the mine has made, which together provide some helpful coverage of what Chinese miners, investors and their western partners are currently working through.

With the feature story, Reverse engineering, Eavan Moore takes a sampling of perspectives from across the industry to analyze the development and impact that geometallurgical programs are having on project planning and investment. Risk aversion, new sampling tools and techniques, and the move from siloed expertise back to interdisciplinary teams, she explains, has miners setting end goals and working back from there.

CIM members also have a new tool to use now that CIM has partnered with the online mining research database OneMine. Signing in at CIM.org will give you access to both CIM’s technical paper library as well as more than 100,000 mining and minerals-related documents hosted at OneMine.

We at CIM’s national office want to add our voices to the many others who have been paying their respects to long-time CIM volunteer Ray MacDonald who passed away this summer. You will find a tribute to Mr. MacDonald in our CIM Community section.

Ryan Bergen

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