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- If any of these images warrant it, and there is room for them, they can be moved to the article. LinguistAtLarge 17:24, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
Coquina Quarry sixty feet below sea level, Conway, South Carolina
A dimension stone quarry
Crabtree Quarry in Raleigh, North Carolina
Definition of Quarrying
- A quarry is a type of open-pit mine from which rock or minerals are extracted. Quarries are generally used for extracting building materials, such as dimension stone.
I see two main problems here:
- there definitely are underground quarries, a lot of them, in every parts of the world; (as well as open-pit mines, open-pit or underground is never a criterion);
- the distinction between mines and quarries changes according to the country, at least in language.
For most countries, I believe (for France I'm sure) a quarry is anything that is not a mine, and a mine is wherever minerals on a specific legal list are extracted . As can be expected, anything of value is a mine: metals, coal, even petroleum (nobody talks about petroleum mines, but the legal situation is similar).
It follows that building materials as well as a few substances such as talc, not being on the list, are quarries. Some deep underground quarries such as slate pits may be run exactly like mines, people working there are miners, but nevertheless slate pits are quarries.
The distinction goes beyond naming: the administrative situations are totally different. Very basically, anybody may quarry on his own land; no-one may mine his own land. The state considers with some reason that valuable minerals can't be put at risk by incompetent or bankrupt individuals, so they decide who gets the right to do it, through concession.
In the UK though, quarrying is only said of extraction of dimension stone (quarry in this case is supposed to mean square). All the rest is called mining: sand mining, gypsum mining.
I would say that the legal situation is not affected by this distinction, but this makes naming stuff on Wikipedia/media a tough business.
The current intro of this article needs a bit of tweaking. It makes the claim that quarrying and mining are distinctly different even though that is not the case. According to this Canadian glossary of mining terminology, a quarry is "an open or surface mine site where stone, rock and construction materials are extracted". And according to this European glossary pf mining terminology, it makes the claim that a "surface mine is a surface depression created by the excavation of near surface mineral deposit. Also called as open cast mine, open cut mine, open pit mine or quarry". From looking through the article history it looks like the definition was changed in October 2013 by an anonymous user with no sources whatsoever. If I don't hear something back within the next few days I am going to switch it back to the previous intro. Volcanoguy 13:23, 14 February 2014 (UTC)