The Great Sacandaga Lake Deepening Project

Further Benefits

With beneficiating (turning these minerals into usable products) we could easily double the economic benefit to the area to $100 billion or more.


    An understanding about the mineral wealth found in the Sacandaga Basin is based on the following information:

    The southeastern Adirondacks are composed of high-grade metamorphic rock terrains of the Igneous-Plutonic types including Granites, Nepheline Syenites, Ferro-Diorites and Gabbros. These rock massifs are close to 1 billion years old and their constituents include Essential minerals, Accessory minerals and Associated minerals.

    These and others minerals were transported into the Sacandaga Basin by the last glacial epoch and exist in deposits throughout the basin, between the Noses and Batchellerville Faults, both under the Great Sacandaga Lake (GSL) and beyond to Gloversville and Johnstown.

    All of the minerals have been identified by their geochemistry, mineral chemistry and mineral identification counts. These rock types ALWAYS contain Essential, Accessory and Associated minerals anywhere in the world where they exist.

    The GSL Deepening Team has already cored about 10% of the GSL. The Team has also analyzed ore reserve calculations from geophysical and water well logs around the shoreline. The corings and analysis clearly indicate that an average 20' deepening would yield more than $5 billion in heavy minerals.

    This information strongly suggests the presence of a highly significant mineral reserve in the GSL lakebed, with implications that the GSL could easily be deepened to an average of 40 feet or $10 billion in heavy minerals alone.

    It is likely that the light minerals, such as feldspar (glass), nepheline syenite (ceramics) and the strategic minerals could double or triple the reserves to as much or more than $50 billion over 20 years. It will take 30 years to deepen the GSL to a 40 foot average deepening. Even the lowliest of minerals here would completely pay for the deepening of the GSL.

    With beneficiating — turning these minerals into usable products — we could easily double the economic benefit to the area to $100 billion or more. A 20’ deepening including all necessary equipment and operations is expected to cost $1.35 billion over 20 years, not including the cost of beneficiating these minerals.


    It is speculative to estimate what the effect spin-offs and multiplier effects will mean to the region’s economy. However, the Mining Association of British Columbia (2003) state that mining operations add substantially to the local economy.

    Below is an excerpt from the article:


    SOURCE: Mining Multiplier Effects in British Columbia

    One measure of the impact of an industry or sector on an economy has traditionally been the use of "multipliers" - representing the impact of the expenditures of the industry, plus the additional spin-offs created by the industry's activities. These multipliers have typically measured either the total number of jobs that depend on an industry or the total income generated by the local (or domestic) expenditures of an industry's firms, their suppliers, and expenditures by the industry's employees.

    What is a "multiplier"? First, a multiplier has 3 components: Direct, the actual expenditure of the industry on supplies and employees; Indirect, the income and employment among industry suppliers that is directly attributable to the expenditures by the industry; and Induced, the income and employment effects of the re-spending of the direct and indirect incomes.

    A multiplier attempts to capture, in a single number, the full impact of the direct, indirect, and induced effects of industry expenditures. Second, the value of a multiplier is determined by a number of characteristics. The definition of an industry affects the size of a multiplier. The wider the definition of an industry, its suppliers and their dependence on an industry, the higher will be the multiplier.

    Also affecting the size of a multiplier is the employment structure of an industry - in particular the degree to which an industry depends on outsourcing its services as opposed to internal hiring of employees. Periods of downsizing, "right-sizing" and corporate restructuring can have a significant impact on the value of a multiplier.

    Definitions of industries have been determined in the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system and the more recent North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) The size of the geographic area used for a multiplier assessment will affect the value of the multiplier. Smaller geographic areas result in lower multipliers as a result of "leakage" or the spending of a company on supplies that are brought in from outside the geographic area under analysis. The larger the geographic area, the higher the multiplier - this explains why multipliers for Canada are higher than multipliers for British Columbia alone. The time period for analysis affects the value of a multiplier. If the time period chosen is limited to a recessionary period, the value of a multiplier will be lower than if the time period analyzed was during an expansionary business cycle phase. This involves the interaction between the level of economic activity and employment, and the industry's impact multiplier. Also affecting the value of a multiplier is the inclusion or exclusion of the effects of construction expenditures. An industry undergoing rapid expansion (such as mining in British Columbia during the 1960's and 1970's) will have higher multipliers than an industry, which only includes operating expenditures of existing companies. In addition, the physical location of an industry in the "production stream" in relation to the final consumer will influence the value of a multiplier. Upstream industries, which are further removed from the final consumer, can have higher multipliers (i.e. more indirect and induced impacts) than downstream industries, which are closer to the final consumer (Mining Association of British Columbia, 2003).

    A review of Mining Industry Multipliers from new mining operations in British Columbia, representing the total impact (direct, indirect, and induced), averaged 2.8 to 3.5, according to the British Columbia Ministry of Finance, Mining Association of British Columbia, 2003.

    If the GSL Deepening Project were to average 3.0, given the same rural character of the mining projects in BC, we could expect nearly $40 billion in spin-offs and multiplier effects, or a total impact of $50 billion to the upstate New York economy in just a 20 foot deepening.