We think it is important that people know where and how mica is being mined today.
Here is an NBC segment from the Today Show of women and children mining mica in Madagascar. You may find these images disturbing.
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To our valued visitors:
We have included this video on our website because we believe it is important that our visitors know where and how some mica is mined. Mica is a mineral of low profile but of great importance across a broad spectrum of everyday products from drywall cement to the aerospace industry.
The discontinuation of mica mining at the Wheeler Brothers Mines along with dozens of other mica mines around the USA is a direct result of these practices.
You may find this video produced by NBC disturbing. We personally know how difficult, back breaking and dangerous mica mining is.
It is difficult to watch women and children mining mica with their bare hands, unprotected from the silica dust inside unreinforced shafts and tunnels.
We find these images of women and children mining mica for literally pennies a day another example of the complete disregard some in the international corporate world have for human life and dignity.
Mica mining has all but disappeared in this country. One of the few mining operations that still produces mica on a commercial scale is the Quartz Corporation in Spruce Pine, North Carolina. Outside of a few artisanal mining operations there is little mining for mica domestically. The cost of hard rock mica extraction can not currently compete with “child labor “ practices .
As the video details China is the main processor of raw mica and controls the value added manufacture and distribution across a wide range of products.
We have reached out around the USA in search of companies that process mica in an effort to potentially market the high quality mica our Mines are capable of producing, we have been met with deafening silence.
Cynthia MacFadden is the author and producer of this video for NBC news. She is a native of Lewiston, Maine and a graduate of Bowdoin College in Brunswick ,Maine
Cynthia McFadden (born May 27, 1956) is an American television journalist who is currently the senior legal and investigative correspondent for NBC News. She was an anchor and correspondent for ABC News who co-anchored Nightline, and occasionally appeared on ABC News special Primetime. She was with ABC News from 1994 to 2014 and joined NBC News in March 2014.
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