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One of the most prominent manifestations of changing trends in exploration for metals is a more common participation by the geologist in mineral economics. There are least three new aspects of exploration in which this involvement is expressed. 1. Increased competition and new entries in mineral exploration are challenging the traditional conservative approach to exploration by mining companies. A new philosophy introduced primarily by oil companies tends to increase costs and accelerate the tempo of exploration thereby changing the total economics of many programs of mineral exploitation. 2. The broadening commodity interests of many companies have utilized the varied backgrounds of exploration geologists in preparation of commodity evaluations and forecasts. Many geolog sts are now providing advice and background to guide corporate decisions regarding new commodity ventures. 3. The mining industry is confronted with a new set of costs that are now part of the economics of any operation. These may be considered to be environment-control factors and are related to restoration of mined-out areas and water- and air-pollution controls.
To function efficiently in mineral economics, the geologist must establish and maintain a flow of communication with all subdivisions of his company and with people in other professions and disciplines, such as engineering, accounting, sales, metallurgy, chemistry, and economics. It is also vital that he present his ideas and conclusions in a manner meaningful to management.
Finally, one of the major needs of the exploration geologist is the availability of educational facilities in mineral economics.
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