Los Angeles Times

Commentary: Stop ripping up land like it's 1872

What if communications today were governed by a law passed before the telephone was invented? Or if transportation were guided by federal policy made before there were cars?

That's exactly the type of anachronism in play regarding America's key law governing the extraction of hard-rock minerals, such as gold, silver and copper, on public land. The Mining Act of 1872, which President Ulysses S. Grant signed, still sanctions destructive practices on what amounts to one-third of the country's acreage

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