Sustainable mineral development a great opportunity for NM - Albuquerque Journal

Sustainable mineral development a great opportunity for NM

Rural southwestern New Mexico is a special place with a storied history of mining and mineral development. The long-shuttered mines of the classic American mining district at Mogollon in Catron County once contributed greatly to the region’s prosperity while producing precious metals important to New Mexico and the nation.

On Oct. 30, Bob Moore placed an op-ed in this paper that misjudges Summa Silver and our work near Mogollon. Although we respect his opinion, we welcome the opportunity to set the record straight.

Summa Silver is conducting exploratory drilling in the Mogollon area exclusively on private property where after rigorous review, permits were granted by state authorities. We have conducted the prerequisite wildlife and archaeological surveys, as well as additional scientific survey work above and beyond the regulatory requirements. Furthermore, we have posted an obligatory reclamation bond to guarantee our current 1.35-acre work area will be environmentally stewarded and reclaimed to a pre-exploration state.

To be clear, our work is conducted in a manner centered around the pillars of environmental stewardship, community engagement, meeting or exceeding the requirements of the state’s permitting process and maximizing economic benefits for the people of the region.

The Mogollon mining district is home to significant underground mine workings, a testament to a robust mineral resource developed into the early 1940s. As is the nature of underground mines, the silver and gold deposits in the Mogollon area have small footprints. Should our exploration work prove successful, it is anticipated underground mining with a very small footprint would be the extraction method of choice.

Moore also suggests there is a choice between either economic development or environmental protection. That’s a false choice, and mineral development is not a zero-sum proposition. Summa Silver uses modern processes and technologies that protect the environment, create opportunities for our communities, as well as provide economic benefits at the local, regional and state levels – all while advancing the development of minerals to both sustain and improve our quality of life.

Did you know silver is a vital metal in the transition to a greener economy? For example, the International Energy Agency estimates that by 2030, silver demand for solar panels could triple, potentially using roughly 300 million ounces annually, or 30% of global supply. In fact, solar is becoming the lowest-cost option for new electricity generation in most of the world.

Sadly, many of the minerals used in our smart phones, computers and cars are largely sourced from Third World countries where child labor issues are deeply troubling, local people receive little to no benefit, and environmental protections are non-existent. Conversely, in this country we have some of the world’s strongest regulations that result in health, safety and environmental protections widely respected around the world.

New Mexico is blessed with mineral resources, strong labor standards and the highest degrees of environmental protections. At Summa Silver, we look forward to continuing exploration work under these regulations at our promising project near Mogollon. Most importantly, it is our goal that one day the silver deposits we discover will help bring renewed prosperity to this extraordinary part of New Mexico.

Home » Opinion » Guest Columns » Sustainable mineral development a great opportunity for NM

Insert Question Legislature form in Legis only stories

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email

taboola desktop

ABQjournal can get you answers in all pages


Questions about the Legislature?
Albuquerque Journal can get you answers
Email addresses are used solely for verification and to speed the verification process for repeat questioners.
Albuquerque Regional Economic Alliance, CBRE highlight metro area’s diverse ...
ABQnews Seeker
"This report, updated annually, has become ... "This report, updated annually, has become one of our top economic development publications used to articulate our value proposition and market the region to ...
These six laws in New Mexico are being targeted ...
ABQnews Seeker
A push to repeal laws passed ... A push to repeal laws passed this year on abortion, elections and gender-affirming care is encountering legal hurdles. But leaders of a coalition seeking ...
Corrugated sheets, digital printing manufacturer to expand presence in ...
ABQnews Seeker
Franklin Mountain Packaging, which already has ... Franklin Mountain Packaging, which already has operations in Santa Teresa, says it has signed a lease to construct a 150,000-square-foot facility adjacent to its ...
Blake's still serving up the food that makes it ...
ABQnews Seeker
The late Blake Chanslor launched his ... The late Blake Chanslor launched his eponymous restaurant way back in 1952.
Filmed in ABQ, 'Flamin' Hot' tells the story of ...
ABQnews Seeker
"Flamin' Hot" begins streaming Friday, June ... "Flamin' Hot" begins streaming Friday, June 9, on Hulu and Disney+.
Local actress lands part in New Mexico-filmed Cheetos movie
ABQnews Seeker
On June 9, "Flamin' Hot," starring ... On June 9, "Flamin' Hot," starring New Mexico native Lora Martinez-Cunningham, is set to stream on both Hulu and Disney+.
Country duo LOCASH making stop at Isleta with Kane ...
ABQnews Seeker
LOCASH recently released the single, "Three ... LOCASH recently released the single, "Three Favorite Colors" which has already become a hit at its concerts.
Fusion Theatre Company to present ‘The Seven’ short works ...
Fusion Theatre Company has announced the ... Fusion Theatre Company has announced the winners of "The Seven," its 17th annual short works festiva ...
Pitino is high on UNM newcomers as Lobos start ...
ABQnews Seeker
A wide variety of updates on ... A wide variety of updates on Lobo hoops as UNM players start summer workouts, including Pitino's thoughts on rivalry scheduling and much more.