HOUGHTON — Michigan could see another mining boom, if only the state would do the studies necessary to get it going. That’s the opinion of one geological expert. ABC 10’s Keweenaw Bureau Reporter Rick Allen explains.

This boulder is just the tip of the iceberg – so to speak. An exhibit featuring the three and a half ton nickel–copper sulfide rock was dedicated in the lobby of the Dow Environmental Science and Engineering Building on the campus of Michigan Tech. The boulder…along with two smaller specimens…came from deep within the Eagle Mine. They are examples of the wealth of minerals below the surface.

Michigan Geological Survey Director John Yellich said, “The minerals that are being found now are in the subsurface where we have no surface expression and we can’t see them. So, look at the table top in front of you, that’s what it is. There’s nothing there. But, once we start using new technologies that are available to us today, that’s geophysical techniques, and putting that together with surface mapping, we can start looking deeper.”

A geological survey in Michigan has not been conducted in over 30 years and there is currently no funding for one. If a survey were to be completed it could lead to further exploration of mineral deposits and ultimately jobs.

Yellich adds, “But the biggest thing that I see is the infrastructure. The  infrastructure here means that we have electrical, we have internet access, and we have roads that are betting than what we were and then we can people coming in and enjoying what we have here in the U.P.”

If the state were to fund it, a geological survey would include surface mapping and analysis of rock and core samples to determine what lies beneath.

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