Wilderness mineral potential: Assessment of mineral-resource potential in U.S. Forest Service lands studied in 1964-1984: Volume 1

Professional Paper 1300- 1
Prepared in cooperation with the U.S. Bureau of Mines
Edited by: S.P. MarshS.J. Kropschot, and R.G. Dickinson



Under the provisions of the Wilderness Act (Public Law 88-577, September 3, 1964) and subsequent related legislation, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Bureau of Mines (USBM) have been conducting mineral surveys of wilderness and primitive areas, and of other national forest lands being considered for wilderness designation. The Wilderness Act directs that the results of these surveys are to be made available to the public and are to be submitted to the President and the Congress. This professional paper is a synopsis of the mineral surveys made from 1965 to 1983. It summarizes our current knowledge of mineral and energy resources and of the potential for the occurrence of undiscovered mineral and energy resources in 45 million acres of Federal lands, chiefly in national forests.

This book, in two volumes, consists of 332 summary articles, arranged alphabetically by State, in which the mineral-resource potential of about 800 individual areas is discussed. The summaries of the mineral surveys were written during 1982-83, generally by those who made the surveys. Index maps of each state show the location of the areas studied, numerically keyed to an alphabetic list. The national distribution of the wilderness lands studied is shown on the frontispiece. Where lands were in proximity or were added to expand previously designated areas, they often are described in a single article.

Each article begins with a short summary of the results of the mineral survey followed by a discussion of the character and geologic setting of the area. Mineral resources (if any) are discussed, and the potential for undiscovered mineral resources is assessed; these are keyed to the generalized geographic and geologic map of each area Areas that have geologic characteristics indicative of different degrees of potential for the occurrence of mineral resources are shown in shades of red on each map. Some articles have a section on suggestions for further study to better define the mineral-resource potential of the area A list of pertinent references (including many of the maps and reports prepared during the mineral survey) is provided at the end of each article.

This introduction contains some basic concepts about mineral resources and mineral-resource potential to try to make the book more useful to those who are not familiar with the fields of earth science and mineral-resource assessments. The legislation dealing with the wilderness program is reviewed briefly, because this evolving legislation has imparted a continuing and changing influence on the mineral-resource surveys. The introduction concludes with a description of the publications of the Geological Survey that report in greater detail the results of the joint wilderness studies by the Geological Survey and the Bureau of Mines.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Wilderness mineral potential: Assessment of mineral-resource potential in U.S. Forest Service lands studied in 1964-1984: Volume 1
Series title Professional Paper
Series number 1300
Chapter 1
DOI 10.3133/pp1300I
Year Published 1984
Language English
Publisher U.S. Government Printing Office
Publisher location Washington, D.C.
Contributing office(s) Geology, Minerals, Energy, and Geophysics Science Center
Description xvii, 550 p.
Public Comments Volume 1 includes Table of Contents for both Volumes 1 and 2
Country United States
State Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
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