Despite the focus in recent years on Utah’s growing technology sector, mining continues to provide Utah with a strong economic base and viable employment opportunities. A report published in January 2023 in Utah’s business journal, The Enterprise, notes that in 2019 the energy and mining sectors contributed in excess of 10% to the states GDP with a disproportionate 20% contribution to the state’s tax revenue. The energy and mining sectors also provide above average wages. The average annual wage for the energy sector in 2019 was 45% higher than the state average, with the mining sector coming in at 25% above average. Utah mining recruitment for executive and management level positions also hold potential for growth as the economy moves moves toward critical mineral mining operations in the future.
The natural resources in Utah provide abundant opportunity for growth and development including reserves of conventional fossil fuels and several critical minerals required in the Energy Transition Process and Cleantech development. Effectively managing and developing these resources requires a skilled workforce and an appreciation of the potential these resource hold.
Pressure from the current administration to move away from fossil fuels to a clean energy economy places the mining sector in Utah at risk. While mining infused a healthy $7.7billion into Utah’s economy in 2019, political opposition to new projects based on location and the feared environmental impacts on previously untouched land has dampened many proposals. Ironically, it is these projects that could supply the US with the critical minerals required to move towards a cleaner and greener economy.
This catch twenty-two situation balancing environmental protection against the need for critical minerals needs careful consideration to position Utah as a responsible provider of critical minerals such as lithium, which could soon be mined on the shores of the Great Salt Lake pending approval.
Tellurium, the little known by product of copper smelting used in the production of photovoltaic solar cells to convert sunlight to electricity, will soon be produced by Rio Tinto at its Kennecott Copper mine. Rio Tinto will have the capacity to produce 20 tons per year providing a new North American supply chain for the critical mineral.
The developments in the mining sector in Utah provide both investment and employment opportunities in the state. GateSource HR can assist in the recruitment of skilled professionals and executives in the mining and critical mineral mining sector.
If you are a qualified engineering, finance or management professional with mining experience looking for a new challenge in the Utah Mining sector or a Utah based Mining Multinational or Junior Mining Company looking for Utah Mining Recruitement Solutions, contact the GateSource HR Mining Team to explore new career prospects and opportunities.