The preliminary estimated value of U.S. non-fuel mine production grew to $68 billion in 2007, a 2.9% increase over the previous year, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The increase in value resulted from higher prices for many minerals rather than increased production. For most mineral commodities, the quantity produced decreased.
The estimated value of domestically processed nonfuel mineral materials also rose. The USGS placed the value at $575 billion, an increase of about 1.4%.
Mine production of gypsum, industrial sand and gravel, silver, soda ash, dimension stone and zinc increased. Production of copper, gold, iron ore, lead, molybdenum, phosphate rock, potash and talc was down, although the value increased. The value of aluminum, lime, nitrogen and sulfur also grew, according to the USGS.
Not surprisingly, global consumption of metals and minerals rose, driven by the economies of China and India, and led to higher prices for many mineral commodities.