These eye-opening images taken by photographer Dillon Marsh ask the question: Is it really worth it? Is the environmental destruction of massive mining really worth the meager result?
Marsh travels across South Africa to capture images of the mines. To get a visual understanding of what’s really happening to these massive mining operations, he uses a CGI mockup of the minerals actually produced and pairs it with each photo of the mine.
Kimberly Diamond Mine, also known as the Big Hole. It’s longer than four football fields, and almost four times deeper than Lake Erie. See that tiny dot in the middle of the hole? That’s the actual size of the diamond the mine produced.
Here’s a closer look.
Koffiefontein Diamond Mine, which just closed earlier this year (2014).
Here’s the CGI representation of the diamond produced.
Jagersfontein Diamond Mine, which is known for producing two of the biggest diamonds ever discovered.
All in all, this is it.
Blue Copper Mine
West O’okiep Copper Mine
Nababeep South Copper Mine
Tweefontein Copper Mine
Jubilee Copper Mine
“Mineral resources fuel growth and development, of course, but by looking at things from a different angle I hope I can encourage people to think critically about the true costs and benefits,” Dillon Marsh says.
Is it really worth it? You be the judge.