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

Out of the West

There was hail today and this morning it was three degrees Celsius. It is almost the end of April. Even though days get longer as the sun rises higher above the horizon I am now convinced that Ireland does not have a climate. This little island, adrift on the north Atlantic edge of Europe, has just … Read more

Shipwrecks and Polar Explorers

The iron ore price had its biggest single one-day price gain in history on Monday. What happened over the weekend? A sudden supply shortage? More likely irrational exuberance in response to an aspirational plan for the Chinese economy? Gold is back above $1,250, the zinc price has gained 20 per cent and copper 15 per … Read more

The Kerry Slug and Broken Clocks

The Kerry Slug is rare – an endangered species. I know because I came across a paper of 101 pages about the slimy invertebrate[1]. The slug is also protected under the Wildlife Act 1976 under Statutory Instrument No. 112 of 1990. Rhododendron ponticus is a major threat to this slimy speckled creature. That is apart from … Read more

Ziggy, Poker and Bellwethers

Ground control to Major Tom. You’ve really made the grade. Globally, how long does an average buyer hold his stock? Circuit breakers kicked in to stop the avalanche of selling on the Chinese stock market. Traders left with nothing to do just played cards on the trade-floor of the Chinese Stock Exchange. Is this a … Read more