At 6 a.m. on Feb. 2 – The moment Trump’s proclamation reducing the size of the Bears Ears and Grand
The process is governed by the General Mining Law of 1872. There are NO environmental guidelines specific to hard rock mining, and NO requirement to pay any royalties. BREAK This is the same system as was used for staking a claim during the Gold Rush: A prospector hammers four poles into the ground corresponding to the four points of a parcel that can be as big as 20 acres, and attaches a written description of the claim onto one of them. A prospector then has 30 days to record the claim at the local BLM office.
The costs of claiming are low: a $212 filing fee, and an annual maintenance fee of $150. The claims provide prospectors mineral rights but not ownership of the land.
The law covers mining for uranium, gold, silver, copper and other precious metals.