The economic possibilities of gold mining in Honduras are endless, at least if you ask the mining company Scotia International Of Nevada SION. Max Warren Barber, CEO of the company and former director of mines, states that they are committed to helping the nation reach its highest potential in this regard. Here’s what he had to say about how his company approaches gold mining in Honduras.
Who is Max Warren Barber?
Max Warren Barber is the CEO of Scotia International of Nevada Inc, SION. His company has been a gold miner for decades and that makes him passionate about what he does. I have always loved mining and am excited to be doing it now, says barber. It feels good to make money for my company. The company that owns me will help me pay off my college loans as well as pay for my son’s college education when the time comes. Gold mining isn’t just a job for me—it’s an opportunity to give back to those who helped me succeed.
How did you get into the industry?
Max always loved the idea of being a modern day prospector. As he began to grow as an explorer, he found his passion for geology and put his degrees from Cornell University to good use as he went searching for lost mines and gold nuggets. His company has discovered over 25 million ounces of gold since its inception, but it wasn’t all easy going. There were hard times when Max was forced to ask himself some tough questions like whether or not he should keep expanding or if it was time to sell everything off. But he decided to push forward. It was one of the best decisions he ever made because now the company is running a successful operation. Scotia International Of Nevada SION helped Max Warren Barber by providing him with mining equipment that would be impossible to find in Honduras.
The final paragraph should end with Max looks forward to discovering more gold and turning many more lives around.
What makes this location unique?
In addition to being rich in gold, Honduras is one of the most beautiful countries I have ever visited. The country has an incredible mix of natural and man-made beauty with green forests, pristine white beaches, bustling city centers and picturesque valleys. As for the actual gold mining itself, this wasn’t my first rodeo. My company invests in African gold mines, so I had seen how hard it is to mine alluvial gold from a stream bed. What was new to me was the site we were visiting was also a producer of placer gold. Placer gold is where you take water out of creeks and pan for flakes of gold that are mixed into sand or gravel. The Honduran government started taxing that type of production years ago, which made this location unique because they didn’t want to drive away their best producers! It’s funny how a tiny little tax can make such a big difference on how much investment capital flows into the country.
When you go down in these rivers looking for gold, there is something about the light coming through the canopy above that creates such ethereal surroundings. All I could think about was why people don’t just walk down there and pick up some gold instead of trying to go underground like what miners do? Is it greed? Fear? Or are people just conditioned by decades of expensive education telling them to pursue careers other than artisanal gold prospecting? Anyway, when we found any small nuggets of gold while fishing around with our pans there was an immediate sense of elation because these pieces could be worth thousands or even tens of thousands when melted down!
Why do you choose this particular site over another one nearby?
Max’s perspective as an Englishman visiting a mine in the Western Honduran mountains is unique. I’m also interested in how long he was here, and what his opinion of it was before, during, and after. This also seems like a great opportunity to hear about mining in one of the poorest countries with one of the most expensive natural resources, so we can gain insight into why this industry might exist at all. It would be nice to know more about the process involved, too- does he have any anecdotes from his time spent there?
What are some negative aspects of this work that people should know about?
One of the more negative aspects of working as a gold miner is that there are safety risks involved. Masks and gloves are not always available, or if they are, they may be rudimentary and might not provide adequate protection. There also isn’t always proper equipment to extract the gold from its ore form without poisoning oneself by touching or inhaling mercury vapor that often accompanies it. Scotia International Of Nevada SION offered training courses for miners on how to use protective gear like masks and vests while removing gold from its ore form, but this was only possible with a significant increase in funding from donors.