Potash mining in Arizona may be leading to a new land rush similar to the boom times of silver mining in Tombstone, gold mining in Prescott and copper mining in Miami, Arizona.
Several recent articles and reports from Arizona have revealed that Arizona, more particularly the Holbrook Basin, contain a vital and enormous supply of the agricultural fertilizer, potash. The term potash is loosely defined and refers to substances whose potassium content is expressed in terms of potassium oxide (K2O).
According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), Potash is used primarily as an agricultural fertilizer (plant nutrient) because it is a source of soluble potassium, one of the three primary plant nutrients.
Currently there are only three states in the United States where significant quantities of this important product are mined. They are Michigan, Utah, and New Mexico. Total US value of potash production was approximately $540 million in 2010 according to the USGS.
Over 80% of the potash used in the United States in 2010 was imported, mostly from Canada, followed by Belarus and Russia. Canada considers potash to be such an important commodity that they blocked the sale of its leading producer to a foreign company.
Holbrook, Arizona Land Holds Vast Reserves of Potash
Per USGS information, the Holbrook Basin contains potash reserves of 1 billion tons. When compared with the meager 40 million tons of reserves in Michigan, an image of a huge new Arizona mining land rush begins to emerge.
A public Canadian company, Confederation Minerals Ltd. announced it has signed a Mineral Property Option Agreement with Passport Potash Inc. for its interest in the Holbrook Basin project. This includes an agreement with the Arizona State Land Department to explore 3,200 acres for potash deposits in the area.
Passport Potash recently set up tents and hosted dignitaries at the site of the Arizona potash deposits for a presentation about its project.
According to the AZ Journal, Passport President Joshua Bleak explained that Passport has current holdings of more than 100 square miles in the basin and holds permits for a total of 24 drill holes.
Passport has also indicated that the company has come to an agreement with the Hopi Tribe to explore 18 sections of adjacent land owned by the Hopi Tribe.
New High-Paying Mining Jobs in Arizona Possible
Passport estimates that the new potash mining operations could create up to 1500 construction jobs and 500 permanent Arizona jobs paying around $70,000 annually per employee.
The area of Potash deposits in the Holbrook basin is about 12 miles southeast of Holbrook, Arizona. This portion of the state is a patchwork of private land, state land and federal land.
In Arizona, the mineral rights to property have often been separated from deeded land ownership. Any land that is available for purchase with the mineral rights included would be of higher value.
Tom Billings (Arizona Land Guy) has been involved in the purchase and sale of thousands of acres of land in Navajo County near Holbrook, Arizona and the potash deposits. For further information about land he may be contacted at 480-717-8895. For information about potash, contact Arizona Geological Survey geoscientist, Michael Conway at 520-770-3500.