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Comments on MSHA Examinations Proposal

Posted By Mark Ellis, Monday, September 25, 2017

IMA-NA filed comments last week on MSHA’s proposed rule to delay the effective date of its final rule on the examination of working places in metal and nonmetal mines.  Through the proposed rule, MSHA proposes to delay the effective date of its final rule from October 2, 2017, to March 2, 2018.  The extension of time would offer additional time for MSHA to provide stakeholders training and compliance assistance.  Other activities MSHA has committed to undertake include holding informational meetings around the country prior to enforcing the final rule, conducting compliance assistance visits at metal and nonmetal mines, addressing issues raised by stakeholders during quarterly training calls, stakeholder meetings and compliance assistance visits, training its inspectors to help assure consistency in MSHA enforcement, and developing training materials to assist miners and mine operators in effectively implementing the final rule.  IMA-NA supported the delay of the effective date and further supported additional delay of the effective date should such be required for MSHA to achieve its stated goals.

The comments are attached below.

Download File (PDF)

Tags:  examinations of working places; MSHA; proposed rul  MSHA 

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Comments on EPA Asbestos Scoping Document

Posted By Mark Ellis, Monday, September 25, 2017

IMA-NA filed comments last week on EPA’s draft document, Scope of Risk Evaluation for Asbestos.  The scope document will be used in assessing the risks of asbestos under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  The document will be central to EPA’s approach in conducting problem formulation, the next step in the process of the required risk evaluation for asbestos.  The IMA-NA comments stress the importance of EPA applying proper mineral science and up-to-date information whenever it addresses the generic term “asbestos.”  Significant and unnecessary confusion is inevitable if it does not.  The comments highlight instances where EPA inappropriately identified non-asbestiform mineral varieties of the six regulated forms of “asbestos” in the scope document as if they, too, were asbestos.  Specific nomenclature and analytical techniques were identified to assist EPA in making the necessary distinctions.

The comments (without the attachments), are attached below.

Download File (PDF)

Tags:  asbestos  EPA  risk assessment  scope document  TSCA 

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European Minerals Day - This Weekend

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, September 22, 2017

This weekend, IMA-NA's sister organization IMA-Europe is celebrating the 10th Anniversary of European Minerals Day. European Minerals Day provides the opportunity for industrial mineral producers to open their doors to the communities they operate in.  Minerals Day is a great opportunity to educate the general public as well as elected and appointed officials about the role industrial minerals play in their daily lives. From it's start in 2007, European Minerals Day has steadily grown to include hundreds of events across 27 countries.  These events play an incredibly important role in improving awareness and understanding of the minerals, and the companies producing them, that provide the building blocks for our modern lives.

To learn more about the events happening in Europe this weekend click here

To read the Press Release click here

Follow our Twitter account for information throughout the weekend

Tags:  community  community involvement  education  European Minerals Day  IMA-Europe  outreach 

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Workshop on Offshore Well Completion and Stimulation

Posted By Mark Ellis, Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The National Academies Roundtable on Unconventional Hydrocarbon Development is hosting a public workshop on “Offshore well completion and stimulation using hydraulic fracturing and other technologies” on October 2-3 at the Keck Center of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in Washington, DC.  They have an excellent line-up of speakers and welcome your participation.  Registration (in-person or webcast) information is available in the announcement appended below. 

Well completion and stimulation technologies to develop hydrocarbon resources offshore have evolved over decades. Onshore, hydraulic fracturing coupled with horizontal drilling has become a widely known technology due to the development of unconventional resources. However, less understood by the public are common well completion and stimulation technologies used in offshore operations.

This free, public workshop will explore the unique features of operating in the U.S. offshore environment, including well completion and stimulation technologies, environmental considerations and concerns, and safety management.

The audience and speakers from across government, industry, academic, and non-profit sectors will share information and their perspectives on operational, regulatory, and research approaches to minimize risk in developing offshore resources.

To view the workshop agenda, please click here.

The registration link below is for both in-person and webcast participation.

Register today!

Tags:  hydraulic fracturing  National Academies of Sciences  offshore well completion  offshore will stimulation 

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MSHA Issues Two Proposals on Workplace Exams

Posted By Mark Ellis, Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Yesterday, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) published two proposals in the Federal Register relative to its final rule on examinations of working places in metal and nonmetal mines.

The first proposal would delay the effective date of the final rule from October 3, 2017, to March 2, 2018, to allow additional time for MSHA to provide stakeholder training and compliance assistance.  Comments on this proposal must be received on or before September 26, 2017.  IMA-NA will file comments.

The second proposal would make limited changes to two substantive provisions of the workplace examination rule.  The first change would require that an examination of the working place be conducted at least once each shift, either before work begins or as miners begin work in the place.  The addition of the latter phrase is new.  MSHA intends that the examination should be conducted in a time frame sufficient to assure any adverse conditions would be identified before miners are exposed.  The second change would permit mine operators to not record conditions that are corrected promptly.  Promptly means before miners are potentially exposed to adverse conditions.  Comments on this proposal must be received on or before November 13, 2017.  MSHA also will hold a series of four public hearings on the proposed rule, in Arlington, VA; Salt Lake City, UT; Birmingham, AL; and Pittsburgh, PA.  IMA-NA will file comments and participate in one or more public hearings.

The two proposals are attached.

 Attached Files:

Tags:  examinations of working places; MSHA; proposed rul 

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Imerys Opens New Global Science & Technology Center

Posted By Mark Ellis, Monday, September 11, 2017

On August 23, 2017, Imerys celebrated the Grand Opening of its 30,000 square foot global Science & Technology Center in Suwanee, Georgia, designed by local architect Jordan Williams of plexus r+d, Inc.  The facility is one of nine technology centers around the world, networked and inter-connected, for the sharing of ideas, equipment and competencies across Imerys. The new Imerys Technical Center houses a diverse group of geologists, scientists and engineers and will provide an inspiring place to ideate and innovate for Imerys' diverse customers and markets.

The Imerys press release is attached.

 Attached Files:

Tags:  Imerys  Science & Technology 

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First Friday Ask IMA - This Friday

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, September 6, 2017

As a reminder, First Friday's Ask IMA was rescheduled to take place this coming Friday, September 8th at 1:00 EST. Staff will update members on the anticipated legislative and regulatory calendar for the fall, our ongoing work on percentage depletion, CERCLA, and WOTUS, and highlight some exciting speakers we have lined up for the Annual Meeting. We are looking forward to connecting with members on Friday.


Click here to register. 

Tags:  first friday 

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Annual Meeting - Room Block Ends Today

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Tuesday, September 5, 2017

The IMA-NA annual meeting is taking place September 25 – 28, 2017 at the Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel in Chicago, Illinois. To check out the exciting program we've put together this year, please click here. If you've not registered or reserved your room already please consider doing so now. 

To take advantage of our discounted room rate, you will need to make your reservation today. The discounted room rate is $209/night and it expires today September 5, 2017. To book a room at the Loews, you can do so here. Or you can call: 877-868-9134 and mention the Industrial Minerals Association to receive the discounted rate. The hotel is currently very close to selling out outside of our room block and after today we are unable to guarantee room availability or price.

To register for the meeting please click here.

Tags:  Annual Meeting  IMA-NA 

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David Zatezalo Nominated to Head MSHA

Posted By Mark Ellis, Tuesday, September 5, 2017

On Saturday, President Trump nominated David G. Zatezalo of West Virginia to be the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health.  Prior to his retirement as Chairman of Rhino Resources GP, LLC in late 2014, he had served as President and CEO, and was previously Chief Operating Officer of Rhino as well as President of Hopedale Mining, LLC.  Mr. Zatezalo began his mining career in 1974 with Consolidation Coal Company as a UMWA laborer, became a foreman and subsequently General Superintendent for Southern Ohio Coal Company and General Manager of AEP’s Windsor Coal Company.  He later rose to be Vice-President of Operations of AEP’s Appalachian Mining Operations.  Mr. Zatezalo also worked in Australia for Broken Hill Proprietary, Ltd as a General Mine Manager.  Mr. Zatezalo is a Mining Engineering graduate from West Virginia University where he received the 1977 West Virginia University Student Foundation Merit Award.  He became a Professional Engineer and received an award for high grade on the mining exam in 1981.  He also completed the Masters of Business Administration program at Ohio University in 1994.

IMA-NA looks forward to working with Mr. Zatezalo upon his confirmation and swearing-in.

News on Mr. Zatezalo’s nomination can be accessed by clicking here.

Tags:  David Zatezalo  mine safety  MSHA 

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First Friday Ask IMA - Rescheduled

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, August 30, 2017

In deference to the holiday weekend, IMA-NA is rescheduling First Friday's Ask IMA for September. The call is rescheduled for next Friday, September 8th at 1:00 EST. Staff will be updating members on the anticipated legislative and regulatory calendar for the fall, our ongoing work on percentage depletion, CERCLA, and WOTUS, and highlight some exciting speakers we have lined up for the Annual Meeting. We are looking forward to connecting with members next week.


Click here to register. 

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