My cellphone isn’t made of gold

Written By: - Date published: 9:59 am, May 4th, 2010 - 7 comments
Categories: Conservation, Economy, Mining, science - Tags:

The Nats and miners have this weird freeloader argument. ‘Those protesters are hypocrites. Their cell phones and ipods and cars all use mined products. They should support us mining’.

Yup. My cell phone has metals in it. Yup. Our tech base is made of mined elements. But not the stuff the Nats want to mine.

In Paparoa, it’s coal. Dirty coal too. Only good for burning. We can get energy in better, cleaner ways.

In Coromandel and the Barrier, it’s gold. 90% of the world’s gold is used for jewellery and wealth storage (called monetary gold). Only a fraction is used in manufacturing. In fact, world industrial demand is just 600 tons a year. 1700 tons a year is recycled. Very little is wasted. Don’t need to dig up more gold to meet industrial demand.

It’s not to make cell phones (0.03 grams in a typical cellphone) that the miners want to dig up Barrier and Coromandel. It’s to make shiny trinkets and fill Fort Knox.

Dig up our natural treasures. Leave behind toxic lakes. All so some company can sell dirty coal and pretty, shiny stuff..

Seem like a good deal to you?

7 comments on “My cellphone isn’t made of gold”

  1. the sprout 1

    Yes it really is a lame argument that could really only appeal to the woefully ignorant and stupid.

    A bit like saying “you use radioactive materials for your medical and dental xrays, therefore unless you accept nuclear power stations you’re being hypocritical”.

  2. Clarke 2

    Oh, hey, you missed the key resource that we all use – shingle. As No Right Turn says, the main resource under the Parakawai Ecological Area is aggregate. So everyone who, um, drives down a shingle road, or maybe puts shingle on their pathway needs to realise that this only comes at the cost of destroying a pristine wilderness!

    It’s not like shingle can just be found in any old quarry, you know!

  3. But what about the skadoodles of dollars that the local community will enjoy. You can tell by how wealthy Waihi and Huntly are that there must be massive trickle down effects. What, they are two of the poorest areas in the country? Gerry, help!

    Seriously I wish that these so called “experts” who talk about “modern mining practices” and “surgical mining” could explain how this is feasible in the Barrier even though the minerals there are dispersed and you would need to smash up a couple of hills to get it out.

    And they accuse the left of being emotional about the issue? Their sense has been blinded by gold rush!

  4. ianmac 4

    As long as they leave Conservation land alone, I wouldn’t mind too much if they dug for cellphones. Good luck chaps.

    • Tigger 4.1

      Indeed. Heck, more than happy for the mining companies to come to me and negotiate to mine on my privately owned land. I may choose to accept or decline their offers but I will give them a fair hearing. Just leave Sched 4 land alone.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      Well, they’d probably have more luck digging for cell phones than they would have of boosting NZs economy by having foreign corporations digging op the gold/coal.

      Admittedly, this government doesn’t actually care about NZs economy except insofar as how much money they can squeeze out of it for themselves and their mates.

  5. tc 5

    Yup these are desparate times when CT have to get them rolling back to a late 80’s tactic the mining industry in Oz adopted about how many things around you rely on mining so if we don’t your world falls apart.

    Back then it was lightswitches, washing machines etc for that dramatic impact as they were under the public kosh on another uranium mining hot potato in Kakadu but today, in godzone, it’s mobile phones except without the snappy ad’s and PR spin just Uncle Gerry’s awesome lyrical stylings.

    Gold’s irrelevant anyway I reckon as it’s produced in abundance and 80% is industrial use rather than jewelery and the like but if you’re talking a rare puppy like tungsten (a sheelite mine is on King Island off Tasmania) then maybe just maybe you’re onto something so come on Uncle Gerry what’s up those ample sleeves of yours huh?

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