Metallic weapons against Covid-19

Three of the four horsemen of the apocalypse have reached our shores.  Pestilence is in the vanguard, cutting a swath through our cities and villages and byways. In his wake rides War and Death.  Malaria kills nearly a half a million people every year. Over 90 percent of these deaths are in Africa and two out of every … Read more

Risk and Faulty Logic

There are mines where silver is dug; There are places where gold is refined. We dig iron out of the ground And melt copper out of stones. Miners explore the deepest darkness. They search the depths of the earth And dig for rocks in the darkness. (Book of Job 28: 1-3[1])   Gold is gold … Read more

A Cobalt-Blue Swan

I vividly remember that lavish but gaudy five-star hotel at mid-day under the high African sun on the banks of a glittering Niger River. It was built with petro-dollars from Gaddfi’s Libya. I was sitting at a big round table which was shrouded in white linen.  It was mid-day and I was dining with an influential man from … Read more

Auld Lang Syne

The year passed as a first draft, no rewrites just like life itself.  Some parts are good when the juices flowed, some parts could have been better and some so bad you find it hard to recognise it as your own.   But there is no re write. No Flaubert obsessing over Madame Bovary here. It … Read more

Snaring the Monster

Are we running out of metals?  Peak metal?  Like peak-oil it might seem as Mark Twain remarked that “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated”.  My view is that we  must do something soon or we will be past the tipping point.  Another view is that we have plenty of metals to sustain our … Read more

The Simpsons “Come Back Zinc”

Almost 89 percent of LME zinc inventory  is in a New Orleans warehousing complex.  What should not be surprising for a Big Easy location is that the facility is partly below sea level.  That chunk of zinc represents a staggering 50 per cent of current global zinc inventories. What happens when there is a hurricane? Why would … Read more

Peace on Earth

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas. One could say that it has been a “lively” year. It has been a relatively peaceful year by most historical measures. No World Wars, no Korean, or Vietnam wars in this slice of history.  No plague on our house such as world-wide epidemics. Terrorism is wanton and tragic … Read more

Is Ireland becoming MAGnetic?

Good news today! Group Eleven Resources (G11) our private Irish exploration company has a new partner. G11 got a shot in the arm with half of its second-round financing of CDN$1.5 million coming in from MAG Silver Corp (MAG). The financing was over-subscribed. If anyone knows what it takes to make major discoveries it must be … Read more

Exploration is not dead; it is vital

My “wired” fox terrier howled at 4.00am this morning. There was nothing afoot except maybe that he had an incandescent urge to look at the stars. Or maybe he too was having nightmares about shrinking global zinc inventories. I was up and about and thought maybe I should just write a few lines. It has … Read more

The basest of metals is becoming a bit precious

Ireland is basking in brilliant sunshine. Above are blue skies. A blocking high pressure system is squeezing heavy rainclouds over Paris. Dublin is warmer than London! Jaypers, the patrons are squinting in the rays and drinking outside on the footpath. Sunshine is not good for Guinness. The black pint is better in dark musty pubs. … Read more