Friday, 22 October 2021

October Mining Sundowner: a brief glimpse of normality?

Normality at last!  The pandemic is over!  You would have thought so at last night's Cornish Mining Sundowner at Falmouth's Chain Locker, where there was not a facemask in sight and we ordered drinks at the bar as we did in the olden days.

Back to normality at the Chain Locker bar

With no Coronavirus restrictions the dozen or so who attended must have carried out their individual risk assessments, as the virus is still very much with us, Cornwall having one of the highest infection rates in the country, at around 550 per 100,000, compared with the national average of about 450 per 100, 000. It's hard to believe that a month previously the infection rate was 290, and this was 100 times higher than in June, when the sundowner had to be held on the beach as restrictions did not allow indoor mixing!

However, we needn't have worried, as there was no risk, because we all know each other! This reassurance came from the Commons Leader and man of the people, Jacob Rees-Mogg, who explained that Tory MPs do not need to wear masks in the House of Commons as they have a "convivial, fraternal spirit". Looks like the sundowners are safe then.

The mild (11C) evening allowed us to meet outside

It was exactly 5 years ago that I talked to a young Camborne School of Mines graduate, Edward Loye (2nd right in the photo below), who enthused about his acquisition of a hard rock rare earth deposit in Namibia. Ed had graduated from CSM in 2012 with an MSc in Mining Geology, and then spent almost 6 years as Project manager of CSM's SoS RARE consortium. It was great to see him last night and to hear that only this week his company, E-Tech Resources Inc, of which he is Director, announced trading on the TSX-V and presented technical disclosure on its REE focused exploration and development company, with 100% ownership of its flagship Eureka Project in Namibia. The Eureka REE Project is situated in the heart of the Erongo Region of Namibia, the “mining corridor of Namibia”. Neighbouring mines in the region include Rossing Uranium, Navachab Gold, Afritin Tin and Namib Lead Zinc.

As infection rates continue to rise I wonder if this gathering might be the last for some time, dependent on the Government imposing tight restrictions- its Plan B, which I doubt whether they will impose before COP26 in Glasgow. This ends on 12th November, just two weeks before the next scheduled sundowner at the Chain Locker, on Thursday November 25th.

@barrywills

6 comments:

  1. A classical example of ironic understatement: "However, we needn't have worried, as there was no risk, because we all know each other!" Point taken.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You have to wonder what planet Rees-Mogg is on!

      Delete
    2. I wear a mask just to show I'm not a Tory

      Delete
  2. Corona is still splaying hide and seek--now it is for society and individuals to understand "what to do and what not"-pandemic threw many challenges, taught all nations to have "single focus' ,if we have to think of a bright future to "next generation"

    ReplyDelete
  3. Available data on Covid vaccine coverage reveal that the UK is still somewhat below 70% fully vaccinated. If you assume 90% efficacy for Astra Zeneca vaccine, and apply basic probability theory, protection at population level therefore works out at approximately 60%, meaning that about 40% of the UK population remains vulnerable (and this risk is not homogenously distributed). What we now know about Covid is that aerosol transmission is relatively more important than it is for influenza which is relatively more droplet; the former requires masking in enclosed spaces to reduce transmission (which also occurs among vaccinated people although at a lower level than for unvaccinated). The two diseases differ substantially in severity, with Covid much more virulent (higher mortality rate). The so-called "delta plus" strain is gaining ground in the UK; while the vaccine remains relatively effective, this shift also has implications for severe disease among those who become infected. MPs are considered to be influential: what they do, has a behavioral impact not only on their immediate colleagues and staff staff, but also on their constituencies. The UK health secretary advised Parliament to mask up, consistent with the best scientific advice, but this was countermanded by Rees-Mogg as "leader" of the house. But this is not leadership: a resurgence of Covid in the UK is inevitable in the coming weeks and months. This is my approximate "take" on the UK situation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I fear that you are right Franklin and that there is a hard winter ahead of us. Hard to understand why masks are not mandatory

      Delete

If you have difficulty posting a comment, please email the comment to bwills@min-eng.com and I will submit on your behalf