By 1980, black was the new gold. In an energy hungry world still reeling from the oil crisis shocks of the early 1970s and dire predictions that the world’s supplies of fossil fuels were running out rapidly, it was the energy side of the “minerals and energy” duopoly that dominated proceedings in the annual report for 1980.
Gold was still there to be sure, and its days would yet come again when gold prices surged from around 2005 onwards. From a base of $500 an ounce in 2005 gold trebled in value by 2011, in the process making many ore reserves an economic proposition to develop.
That however is a story which is still unfolding …
Left: Mines Department Annual Report 1980. Images and content presented here from this report reproduced courtesy of NSW Trade & Resources, Minerals & Energy