Wyoming Adds $2 Billion to $82 Billion of Minerals Mined Nationally
Written by Andrew-Rossi on February 3, 2021
Wyoming was amongst a group of states that individually contributed over $2 billion worth of mined minerals to the U.S. economy in 2020.
The U.S. Geological Survey has released its annual report: Mineral Commodities Summaries 2020. The over 200-page document summarizes and trends and figures for nonfuel minerals mined throughout the United States.
Unlike the global setbacks faced by the oil and gas industry, the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t slow down the industry by much. The estimated value of U.S. production of industrial minerals in 2020 was $82.3 billion, about 4% less than that of 2019.
“Decision-makers and leaders in both the private and public sectors rely on the crucial, unbiased statistics and data provided in the Mineral Commodity Summaries to make business decisions and determine national policy,” said NMIC director Steven M. Fortier. “Industries—such as steel, aerospace and electronics—that use nonfuel mineral materials created an estimated $3.03 trillion in value-added products in 2020, which represents a 3% decrease from that in 2019.”
The most valuable industrial minerals were construction aggregates – crushed stone, construction sand, and gravel. Those aggregates accounted for 22% – $27 billion – of 2020’s production total.
U.S. metal mine production in 2020 was estimated to be $27.7 billion, actually 3% higher than 2019’s total. The principal contributors to the total value of metal mine production in 2020 were:
- Gold (38%)
- Copper (27%)
- Iron ore (15%)
- Zinc (6%)
These four minerals account for 86% of 2020’s metal mine totals.
12 U.S. mineral commodities were valued at more than $1 billion each in 2020. These were, in decreasing order of value:
- Crushed stone
- Construction sand and gravel
- Iron ore
- Industrial sand and gravel
- Phosphate rock
- Soda ash
Wyoming contributed over its fair share to that $54 billion total.
It was one of a handful of U.S. states that individually added over $2 billion through mineral mining – but it wasn’t the top producer, or even amongst the top 10.
The most productive states, in descending order of 2020 production value, are Nevada, Arizona, Texas, California, Minnesota, Florida, Alaska, Utah, Missouri, Michigan, Wyoming (11th for the year), and Georgia.