Prospecting and mining entail a mix of privileges, rights and responsibilities. Those that say there is a right to prospect and mine the public land, in my view, have a misconception. The ability to prospect and stake claims is more of a privilege.

Once a claim is established, ownership of the minerals attaches to the holder, subject to extraction, and that, with limitations, may in some jurisdictions be a protected property right.

Each have responsibilities; a stewardship of the public lands and waters also arises; and unless we are good stewards, the privilege may easily be lost; the exercise of the property right can be weakened. Mining private ground usually involves contractual rights, but the stewardship is a constant. Some countries and jurisdictions hold sacred the contractual rights, others change with the winds.

Wisdom in the extraction of precious metals creates a store of value, much of which continues..... Properly maintained claims can create a store of value in the earth. PGM’s are used to clean the air, are recycled; and create a store of value. However, the store of value itself has emerging social implications.

Perception can sometimes be misleading; especially relating to prospecting for and extraction of precious metals. Education to create a sense of community, affirming public benefit, and tradition, is essential.