Minding the Minds of Minor Miners

I see the technological advances in underground mining as a band aid that keeps on getting bled through, and we keep on putting on a bigger band aid. We keep digging ourselves into a deeper hole, pun intended. Some people may view it as a glorious thing to be a part of, the huge capitalistic gains from all of the jobs it creates, but the damage is just too much to overlook it. The consequences from the Between the Heavens and the Earth reading keep stacking on top of each other and give us a perspective of one man’s invention, and link it to the worst death toll ever in a mine. Then the article goes on to just fixing the issue of breathing in chemicals and giving the miners oxygen masks instead. It is a cover up from a disaster to another disaster, improving the last disaster until we make another. The technology in mines is a constant make a mistake, THEN fix it. In my opinion, this does not make sense, especially when people’s lives and families are on the line. The consequences of technological advancements made is that the mining relies solely on the technology, and not the resources. Just like with Edison and light bulb, there wouldn’t be a big Butte Montana today without the invention of the light bulb. No matter what, the resources have to keep coming to keep up with the technology, and that is why the mining engineers keep coming up with ways to keep the extraction of the resource going.


The damaging effects of a mine’s operation should be looked at before the mining process even begins. Thinking back to the cattle that were dying from the smoke and emissions from the air, there was no way that this wasn’t thought of in the back of someone’s mind while the process of mining started. Air quality however, probably wasn’t looked at until deaths started happening beneath the surface. Even when things like death and catastrophes happened beneath the ground, the process was to only fix the one problem at hand and to never think ahead. This is the one of the downfalls of extracting resources, everything is on a time crunch. While looking at after the mining process is over, if the land is not livable above the ground, then during and before the mining even started, it was not well planned. I think eventually we will find a system that is safe for humans and the environment to mine, but rushing because of technology is the major downfall of the argument of socio-mining techniques.