Conversations about Gold

This is Gold is about bringing the industry to life. In this section we feature Conversations about Gold – which highlights key discussions about the industry, People of Gold – which introduces some of the most vibrant and interesting people in the industry, and Places of Gold – which shows the mines that keep the industry going.


Places of Gold: South Deep – Looking over a half-century ahead

In the century and a quarter since mining began on the Witwatersrand, the question of what to do with the millions of tonnes of waste rock and tailings that derive from mining has taxed the gold mines’ collective minds. How does the gold industry ensure that those residues do not remain as a potential or actual threat to the environment?

Women in mining

Deep level underground mining is a difficult and physically demanding industry, which due to various historical legal and cultural reasons has traditionally consisted of a largely male workforce. In fact, before 1990, women were legally prevented from being employed in underground mining activities reflection of the broader social inequality in South Africa.

Changing spending habits key to financial wellness: Gold Fields’ lays the foundation to help employees deal with debt

South Africans from all income groups and across all industries are finding themselves in financial trouble. The rising cost of living, increased family obligations and the challenges of finding and holding on to employment has meant many more people are struggling under the burden of debt.

A hands-on approach to dealing with indebtedness at Harmony Gold

Harmony is using storytelling to change spending behaviour and, in so doing, trying to address the significant problem of employee indebtedness. In Africa, storytelling has for centuries been used to inspire action and pass cultural values from generation to another, and it is this same spirit that it hopes to empower employees with the knowledge they need to better manage their financial wellbeing.

People of Gold: SA’s first black Geophysics PhD a Gold Fields bursar

Musa Manzi has come a long way from his days as a boy growing up in rural KwaZulu-Natal.

The Gold Fields-sponsored student turned-academic is the first black South African to get a PhD in Geophysics, and has collected a host of local and global awards for his groundbreaking work on 3D seismic reflection data from the Wits Basin, which are central to South African gold mining.

Money management skills a first step in getting rid of indebtedness: Sibanye Gold

Initial audits on the level of employee indebtedness at Sibanye Gold indicate that almost a quarter of employees have debt against their names, whether it is a home loan, a claim for maintenance, outstanding tax or emolument attachment orders (EAOs).

AngloGold Ashanti lends a hand to help employees deal with indebtedness

AngloGold Ashanti’s approach to dealing with indebtedness is aimed, primarily, at reaching employees before their situation is so dire that they fall into the hands of administrators or ‘loan sharks’. South Africa’s largest gold producer undertook to design and manage its indebtedness programme in conjunction with organised labour.

Modern mining: Re-thinking the way we mine – a challenge in contrasts

The contrasts couldn’t seem greater. Drop almost 3,000 metres to the workings of Gold Fields’ South Deep mine and you might believe yourself to be in the building site of an underground cathedral. Normally on a gold mine one expects to find men drilling with hand-held jack hammers in the narrow confined space of reef stopes.

Warning against safe haven gold? Rhona O’Connell takes the long view

A recent media report quoted Russ Koestrich, chief investment strategist at US fund manager BlackRock, saying that “safe-haven” investments such as gold could be vulnerable to rising US interest rates.

The day the earth shook

There were no heroics. There was no need for any when the earth shook gold mines deep underground just 22 minutes past noon on Tuesday August 5, 2014.