These huge open-pits in the ground can either be called mines or quarry and they give us amazing things like gold, silver, and copper!
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7. The Barrick Goldstrike Mine
Owned and operated by Barrick Gold, which is the largest gold mining company, the goldstrike mine happens to be the largest gold mine in all of North America. Located in Eureka County, Nevada, the goldstrike mine is comprised of 3 different mines, the larger of the three is the Betze-Post open-pit mine, the Meikle, and the Rodeo, both of which are found underground. This complex of mines is also the largest Carlin-type mine in the world. First opened way back in 1986, the mine not only produces gold but silver as well, which just so happens to be where Nevada gets its famous nickname, the “Silver State”, from.
6. The Oyu Tolgoi Mine
The name for this combined open-pit mining project translates to Turquoise Hill and is located in the southern region of the Gobi Desert in Mongolia. The mines that are filled with gold-copper ore deposits are actually relatively new and were only recently discovered back in 2001 by the Canadian company Ivanhoe Mines. It’s expected that the mine will reach full capacity in the year 2021. It’s believed that this mine contains around 2,700,000 tons of copper and another 1.7 million ounces of gold. Like with all other mines, the environmental impact that the Oyu Tolgoi mine is often criticized since it is located in such a dry area and uses more than one billion gallons of water each month.
5. The Chuquicamata (choo-kee-kə-mah-tə) Mine
In terms of volume, the chuquicamata mine, or the “Chuqui” mine as it’s more commonly known is the second deepest open-pit mine on the planet. This mine can be found in the northern area of Chile where its main export is that of copper. This has been the country’s main export and staple that is crucial to how the people of Chile rely on an income and it’s here that the metal is called “Chile’s salary” ever since they became dependent on the copper industry back when the first World War ended. Copper actually makes up about a third of all the country’s foreign trade but that 33 percent was once at a high percentage of 75% a few years earlier.
4. The Dionysos Marble Quarry
This quarry lies on the Penteli Mountain in the town and municipality of Dionysos, Attica in Greece. It’s here that the world famous Dionysos pentelicon marble is extracted. The quarry has been opened for more than a 100 years and it was back in 1949 that it was owned by the Dionysos Marble Company. The quarry currently has 2 underground sites and 9 above ground sites where the marble is extracted. The marble here is protected by law and is solely used for the Acropolis Restoration Project and other ancient buildings in Athens.
3. The Udachnaya Pipe
The name of this open-pit mine literally translates to lucky pipe and can be found right outside of the Arctic Circle in Sakha Republic, Russia. This mine was discovered way back in June of 1955 and is believed to contain around 225.8 million carats of diamonds with an estimated 10.4 million carats harvested annually. The diamond mine was taken over by the Russian diamond company Alrosa back in 2010. This is mine also happens to be the third deepest open-pit mine in the world at a depth of 1,970 feet.
2. The Mir Mine
Occasionally called the Mirny Mine, this was once a former open-pit diamond mine that is located in Mirny, Eastern Siberia, Russia. This mine reaches a depth of 1,722 feet deep, along with a diameter of 3,900 feet making it one of the largest excavated holes to ever exist. The mine was first discovered back in June of 1955 by a group of three Soviet geologists. It proved to be rather difficult as it seemed like there was always one problem arising after another. The cold winter months provided harsh conditions that slowed production, the mine suffered a flood in the 90’s, and surface operations would cease in June of 2001 with underground operations still moving forward until the whole mine was permanently shut down in 2004.
1. The Bingham Canyon Mine
Known by the locals at the Kennecott Copper Mine, the Bingham Canyon Mine is located in the southwest region of Salt Lake City, Utah, in the United States. This massive chasm is known for being the largest man-made excavation in all of the world. Owned by the Rio Tinto Group, the production of this mine was started an astonishing 110-years ago and since then the mine measures at being 2.5 miles long, 0.6 miles deep, and covers a distance of 1,900 acres. The mine endured a tremendous landslide back in 2013 and then a smaller one later that same year.