Texas’ mining industry may be going to hell, but it’s going to get better.
In the months since Texas announced that it was going to declare a state of emergency due to the devastating impacts of climate change, many other states have taken similar steps to deal with the impacts of rising sea levels, drought, extreme weather events and other disasters.
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As of June, there were more than 8,000 licensed mining companies operating in the state, with the majority operating in a few major mining zones.
But a look at the state’s economy reveals the potential of a mining industry that has long been overlooked, and one that is now being recognized for the promise of a high-paying job.
While the mining industry has been hit hard by climate change in the past, the state has a unique opportunity to turn things around with new technology and more investment, according to Texas State University professor Jason Wiese.
Wiese is one of the state lawmakers who led the charge to put the mining boom on hold during the state of emergencies.
That’s partly because of the potential economic boon the industry could bring.
“It’s going not just to be a temporary relief, but to have this investment that will pay for itself over the long term,” Wiesee said.
“It’s a way of creating a higher standard of living for the people who are going to work in these mines.”
The Texas Association of Mining Companies estimates that in-state mining companies generate about $60 million in annual revenue.
This, in-depth analysis from the group’s research showed, would allow companies to provide jobs and economic benefits to more than 7 million people.
While it is true that many companies will find it difficult to hire or retain employees in a time of the climate emergency, Wieses group is optimistic about the economic benefits of mining.
“There’s going be a lot of new businesses that will be able to take advantage of this, because the companies that can afford to hire and retain people are the ones that are going be the most competitive and have the most potential to make money,” he said.
The state is currently facing a projected $7 billion budget deficit of about $1.4 billion for the fiscal year beginning July 1.
The state also has an estimated $2.6 billion deficit over the next three years.
But Wiesen says that could be cut by the new investment the industry will bring to Texas.
In an effort to stimulate growth in Texas’ struggling mining industry in the months ahead, Wriese and others are proposing a $1 million annual investment to support a number of sectors in the mining sector, including mining engineering, mining construction, drilling, drilling and mining engineering.
“We have a number that will generate jobs, we have a very diversified workforce that is well-educated, and we have the ability to employ a large number of skilled workers in our industry,” Wivese said.