Augusta Resource Corporation’s top executives are issuing wildly divergent estimates on the number of jobs that would be created by its Rosemont Copper Company subsidiary if the proposed Rosemont mine is built.
Augusta Resource CEO Gil Clausen said in an August 23 statement to the Green Valley News in reaction to the documentary “Cyanide Beach”, that Rosemont will create 4,500 jobs.
About the same time, an Augusta Resource spokeswoman told Greenwire, the nation’s leading environmental news service, that Rosemont’s proposed open pit copper mine that would be built in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson would generate 9,000 jobs.
Rosemont Copper’s homepage gives conflicting job totals as well.
“Rosemont will bring more than 4,200 new direct and indirect local, state and national jobs,” the company states in one of its rotating slides.
Immediately below, in another homepage post, the company states, “Rosemont will create an average of 2,900 Arizona jobs.”
Another posting states the mine will create 406 direct jobs and 1,700 indirect jobs.
So how many jobs would the Rosemont mine actually create?
According to Augusta’s latest feasibility study submitted to Canadian securities regulators: “The work force for the Rosemont mine averages 448 employees over the life of the mine.”
According to page 194 of the August 28 report (large file warning), there will be 43 salaried general and administrative employees. Mine operations will include 45 salaried positions and 248 hourly employees. The mill operations will have 29 salaried positions and 83 hourly employees.
About 450 actual jobs will be created. This is about one-tenth of one percent of the total number of jobs in Pima and Cochise counties.
So how does Augusta come up with as many as 9,000 jobs?
It appears the company is simply making up the number to drum up support for its project.
Economists use a “multiplier” to determine the number of jobs created by a change in employment of a base industry such as mining.
The multiplier used by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis to determine the number of jobs created by each additional mining job is 2.3.
Using USBEA’s multiplier of 2.3, Rosemont’s 450 new jobs would create an additional 1,035 jobs throughout the economy.
This multiplier, however, appears to be generous.
Resolution Copper Co., which is seeking to construct a much larger underground copper mine near Superior, states it will directly employ 1,400 people. The company’s economic analysis states that the mine will create an additional 2,300 jobs in the economy – a multiplier of only 1.6.
Using this multiplier, the Rosemont mine would only generate an additional 720 jobs.
Augusta’s projection of 406 direct jobs generating 1,700 additional jobs uses a multiplier of 4.2, more than twice what Resolution is using to project the number of jobs its mine would create.
Augusta spokeswoman’s statement that Rosemont Copper will create 9,000 jobs requires a multiplier of 18.9!
Augusta CEO Clausen’s claim that Rosemont will create 4,500 jobs requires a multiplier of 8.9. Clausen should know that he’s making a false statement about the employment impacts of the proposed mine.
These multipliers are not based in reality and are classic pie-in-the-sky projections meant to mislead and deceive Arizonans about the copper mine’s potential employment impact.
Rosemont’s generous employment projections do not account for potential job losses that would occur if this project were to proceed as discussed previously on Rosemont Mine Truth.