History and Importance of Mining in Colorado

Mining is a priority for Larimer County

Mineral extraction and mining activities are crucial for Larimer County to remain economically viable, according to the county’s master plan. The plan states that the county should preserve and protect is commercial mineral deposits from encroachment by incompatible land uses that would limit options for extracting aggregate.

The county’s preservation of minerals directly supports state legislation approved in 1973 that declares Colorado’s natural aggregate resources an essential part of its economy. It also notes that Colorado’s most populous counties face a critical shortage of aggregate resources, which should be extracted in such a way as to avoid waste and cause the least disruption to the environment and residents’ quality of life.

Since Coulson submitted its application to mine the property known as the Stroh Pit in 2002, it has worked with the county to preserve it for sand and gravel mining, an effort that is consistent with the county’s master plan.

Mining is important to Improve our Highways and Roads

Promoting and enabling local infrastructure projects
Sand and gravel are necessary to maintain Larimer County’s transportation system and to support capital infrastructure projects. The project will produce a large quantity of sand and gravel that help keep costs down on local infrastructure projects by eliminating the expense of importing the materials from outside the county.

“Natural aggregate is an infrastructure resource in the Front Range that is produced as sand and gravel or crushed stone,” according to the U.S. Geological Survey. “About 80 percent of Colorado’s aggregate is sand and gravel, which comes from floodplains and terraces along stream and river valleys, or as high dissected terraces and alluvial fans along the mountain front.”

While other land uses may have a higher value than aggregate resources, gravel can’t be mined from under a subdivision. Preserving infrastructure resources for extraction is critical to keeping consumer costs in check, reducing environmental damage and maintaining good relationships between industry and the community.

Mining is an important part of Colorado’s history

The Mining Industry in Colorado by History Colorado.
Mining was far and away the most significant industry in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Colorado and has remained important since that time. The Pike’s Peak Gold Rush brought unprecedented numbers of people into the region and that in turn led to powerful social, economic, and political changes that brought about the creation of Colorado Territory in 1861, culminating in the admittance of Colorado to the Union in 1876. Mining in all its phases remained the great engine of the Colorado economy until the early twentieth century. The industry also contributed to significant technological advances and that, combined with the professional studies of all aspects of the industry, had powerful ramifications in the industry’s global expansion in both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Though sometimes derided as a “mom and pop” industry and one of quaint ruins, mineral development in the Centennial State both reflected and contributed to the dramatic industrial and technological advances of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Moreover, the powerful advance of industrial metal mining, coupled with immense coal production, contributed immeasurably to state, national, and international development.