Rotarian Christopher West welcomed and introduced Red Conger, president/COO of Freeport McMoRan Americas, to Rotary Club of Scottsdale members and guests at a recent meeting held at McCormick Ranch Golf Club’s Pavilion.
Mr. Conger has over 30 years of mining industry experience – 21 year with Freeport-McMoRan, Inc.
Mr. Conger stated that Freeport-McMoRan is the largest publically traded copper producing company in the world with over 30,000 workers worldwide. The company operates seven open-pit copper mines in North America — Morenci, Bagdad, Safford, Sierrita and Miami in Arizona, and Chino and Tyrone in New Mexico.
In addition to copper, molybdenum concentrate, gold and silver are also produced by certain of FCX’s North America copper mines. The company’s first mine was discovered in 1881. The company’s headquarters have been in Phoenix since 1987.
During his program, Mr. Conger talked about the company’s founding in the 1800s; the current demand for copper (construction (30 percent), electrical (24 percent), consumer goods (24 percent), transportation (12 percent), industrial machinery (10 percent); and the copper growth markets (renewable energy, electric vehicles, antimicrobial, aquaculture).
He stated that through exploration drilling, FCX has identified a significant resource at the Lone Star project located near the Safford operation in eastern Arizona. Initial production from the Lone Star oxide ores could begin in 2021 using existing infrastructure to replace oxide production from Safford. FCX is seeking regulatory approvals for this project and continues to evaluate longer term opportunities available from the significant sulfide potential in the Lone Star/Safford minerals district.
Mr. Conger answered attendee questions about abandoned mines, copper reserves and company’s reaction to economic downturns. He ended the program stating the company plans to hire more than 700 workers during 2018. He extended an invitation to join a skilled and versatile team that finds, extracts, processes and provides the raw materials that connect the world.
To learn more about Rotary Club of Scottsdale, visit www.scottsdalerotary.org.