Mining is defined as the exploration, extraction, and processing of minerals such as coal, ore, crude, petroleum, and natural gas. Quarrying, on the other hand, is the extraction of building and monumental stone, clay, sand and gravel, guano gathering, and salt evaporation (National Statistics Office [NSO], 2008). The industry employs four stages, namely, exploration, development and construction, utilization and commercial operation, and decommissioning and final mining stage and rehabilitation (Mines and Geosciences Bureau, 2008).
Copper is a malleable and ductile metallic element that is an excellent conductor of heat and electricity; it is also corrosion resistant and antimicrobial. Copper occurs naturally in the Earth’s crust in a variety of forms. It can be found in sulfide deposits (as chalcopyrite, bornite, chalcocite, and covellite), in carbonate deposits (as azurite and malachite), in silicate deposits (as chrysycolla and dioptase), and as pure “native” copper. Copper also occurs naturally in humans, animals and plants. Organic life forms have evolved in an environment containing copper. Copper and copper-based alloys are used in a variety of applications that are necessary for a reasonable standard of living.
Copper is one of the most recycled of all metals. It is our ability to recycle metals over and overagain that makes them a material of choice. The demand for copper will continue to be met by the discovery of new deposits, technological improvements, development of efficient designs, and taking advantage of the renewable nature of copper through reuse and recycling (International Copper Study Group, 2015).
The Philippines is one of the countries with vast amounts of mineral resources, including large reserves of metallic and non-metallic minerals such as gold, nickel, iron, copper, limestone, and marble. Among the metallic minerals currently available, the largest reserve, which is estimated at about 4 billion MT, is made of copper; thus, the Philippines is the fourth-largest country in the world in terms of copper reserves. The industry produces copper concentrates, cathodes, and wires from these vast reserves, and the production of such commodities is estimated to have contributed P9.74 billion to the economy in 2011. This contribution of the copper industry to the economy is expected to increase to 2% by 2030
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Title: Human Resource Development (HRD) Roadmap for Copper and Copper Products
Researcher: Jhemarie Chris L. Bernas and Ivan Cassidy F. Villena