Boom, Bust, Boom: A Story About Copper, the Metal That Runs the World

Boom, Bust, Boom: A Story About Copper, the Metal That Runs the World


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In following the time-honored journalistic tenet that the best stories are the ones you find in your own backyard, Bill Carter begins this account of the all-pervasive presence of copper in our lives and its cost on our health, economy, and our environment with a simple personal discovery: the presence of arsenic from leftover mine tailings in his backyard garden in the former copper mining town of Bisbee, Arizona. This revelation led him on a quest to find out as much as possible about the mineral copper, its wonderful and mysterious properties, its history in human evolution, and its omnipresence in contemporary life, being found in everything from toothpaste to cellphones. Carter explores several mining areas, past, present, and projected both in the United States and around the world, and details the environmental and health implications involved in open-surface extraction of copper ore. From boardrooms of investors in London to the mountains of Indonesia, Carter connects the dots from his humble backyard garden to the CEOs of the multibillion-dollar global copper industry, confronting a resource that is so vital yet which has the potential to cause horrendous and irrevocable damage to our planet and ourselves.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781936182565
Publisher: Schaffner Press, Inc.
Publication date: 04/01/2014
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 385,668
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Bill Carter is a freelance journalist, filmmaker, photographer and the author of two previous books, Fools Rush In and Red Summer. His articles have been published in numerous publications, including Men’s Journal, Outside, and Rolling Stone. He directed the award-winning documentary, Miss Sarajevo. He lives in Sedona, Arizona. Luis Alberto Urrea is a professor of writing at the University of Illinois–Chicago and the author of the bestselling novel The Hummingbird’s Daughter and the nonfiction book, The Devil's Highway. He lives in Chicago.

Table of Contents

Foreword: Boom Luis Alberto Urrea xv

1 Tainted Vegetables 1

2 Bisbee, Arizona 9

3 The Beginnings 27

4 Company Town 43

5 Cananea 66

6 Copper, Inc. 76

7 The Ring 87

8 Pebble Mine 108

9 Which Side Are You On? 119

10 $300 Billion vs. a Fish 139

11 Superior 151

12 A Miner's Friend 168

13 The Chairman 175

14 Prospector 186

15 Freeport-McMoRan 197

16 Cyanide Cynthia 207

17 The New Old World 215

18 This Old Town 227

Epilogue 233

Author Q&A 243

Acknowledgments 247

Bibliography 248

Index 253

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