There are different diamond Mines in South Africa, as the country is duly blessed with several mineral resources, and its economy is keenly influenced by the mining sector. Not only is South Africa benefiting greatly from these resources, but it is necessary to stress the fact that the mining sector is a big contributor to the country’s economic growth.
So, South Africa is one of the strongest countries in the continent because of its economic strength, which was molded via several efforts from several sectors (including the mining sector). In fact, we can’t ignore how many of the huge earners in South Africa are deriving their resources from their dealings in the mining sector.
Although there are several mineral metals the country is endowed with, and there are various mining activities going on in different parts of the country, in this article, we are concerned with diamond, and of course, diamond mines in South Africa.
Diamond Mining in South Africa
Diamond is obviously one of the most valuable minerals in the whole world and South Africa is not an exception. It is well sought after, pretty valuable, and a precious stone that fetches good money.
The country is a prominent nation as far as the production of a diamond is concerned since the diamond strike in Kimberley back then in 1868. We will be exploring the major diamond mines in the country, and it is necessary to add now that De Beers Consolidated Mines Company t is responsible for almost 100% of the entire South African diamond output.
Here are the major Diamond mines in South Africa:
- Baken diamond mine
- Cullinan diamond mine
- Finsch diamond mine
- Koffiefontein mine
- Venetia diamond mine
List Of Diamond Mines In South Africa And Their Names
1. Baken diamond mine
Baken diamond mine is located in Northern Cape and is one of the major diamond mines in South Africa. The diamond mine can be found along the lower Orange River and is owned and operated by Lower Orange River Diamonds.
Location: Sanddrif, Lower Orange River, Northern Cape
2. Cullinan diamond mine
Cullinan diamond mine used to be known as the “Premier mine” and is located in Cullinan, South Africa
Address: Olienhout Rd, Cullinan, 1000, South Africa
3. Finsch diamond mine
Finsch diamond mine is another prominent mine in South Africa. It is an underground diamond mine in the Northern Cape. Established in 2004, the Diamond mine is owned and managed by De Beers Consolidated Mines
Location: Near Lime Acres, 160 km northwest of Kimberley
4. Koffiefontein Mine
Here is another diamond mine in South Africa that is located in the Free State province. Koffiefontein Mine is also one of the numerous Kimberley mines.
Address: Koffiefontein, South Africa
5. Venetia diamond mine
The Venetia Diamond Mine is a huge diamond Mine in South Africa. In fact, it has a reputation for being the largest producer of the precious stone in the country. It is located in the Limpopo Province.
Location: Within the 360 km² Venetia Limpopo Nature Reserve, South Africa
The History Of Diamond Mining In South Africa (Brief)
We should start by explaining that the idea of mining in the country actually started back then in the year 1867. This was when someone known as Erasmus Jacobs discovered diamond close to the Orange. So, we can say diamond opened the door for mining activities in South Africa. Afterward, gold was also discovered, then came in 1886 when the biggest discovery in the sector was made, birthing the Witwatersrand Gold Rush.
It should be noted that according to experts, natural diamonds were formed some billions of years before now in conditions of intense heat and pressure. Additional, the first diamonds to be found in South Africa are known as Alluvial diamonds. It means the precious stones have been eroded from their primary spots (by erosion) some millions of years before now and placed in a river bed.
So, by 1869, these precious stones were discovered in what was to become Kimberley in the Northern Cape. This place is currently regarded as the world’s diamond capital (remember South Africa has over half of the world’s diamond deposits).
In 1871, the first diamonds were discovered at the future site of the Big Hole on the farm Vooruitzicht. This is owned by the famous De Beers brothers. With the knowledge of the worth of the precious stone, and with the knowledge of its presence in the area, the place was called New Rush, before being renamed, Kimberley. Ever since these discoveries, tons of people have been tasked with digging holes with picks and shovels. According to reports, up to the year 1914, over 40,000 miners have worked to get a reasonable amount of diamonds in the region. And so, the Big Hole, with a surface said to be 17ha, is on the verge of becoming a World Heritage Site.
Additionally, the precious stones were also found in reasonable quantities in kimberlites. It used to be Transvaal – the Cullinan mine close to Pretoria was established in the year 1902. In 1967, the Finsch mine in the Northern Cape was opened. Afterward, in 1992, the Venetia mine was opened, and just like others, mining works have been going on, and tons of diamonds have been seen.
Till this moment, diamond mining operations are going on in the different diamond mines, and it is interesting to know that the country is one that is blessed with this precious stone in large numbers. So, alluvial diamonds and little diamondiferous fissures have been discovered in the country for a lot of years. They have been worked for many years, with operations and activities going on along the southern banks of the Orange River.
So, since there are several mines in the country, we can simply recognize the fact that mining is actually a big income earner for different groups of workers in the country. Tons of job opportunities have been provided to many people in the country as a result of the search and production of precious minerals like diamonds in the country. If you are a South African reading this now, it is likely that you know someone working in one of the numerous mines in the country – it is a sector that has embraced tons of people.
Diamond can be used to serve several functions, and it has a wide range of applications in several industries. These precious stones can be used in jewellery production, including the likes of earrings, engagement rings, and so on. They are shining and beautiful, and they are prioritized for their durability. Additionally, that is used for industrial purposes. One of the major selling points of the diamond remains its toughness. Therefore, it is useful when it comes to drilling, grinding, or cutting materials (which explains why some blades used for cutting are made with diamonds).
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In conclusion about the diamond mines in South Africa, diamonds are also utilised for beauty products, and you can see them processed in facial and diamond exfoliator. There are products coming with diamond dust, with the intention of serving certain important beauty purposes. Of course, as expected, the cost of such products is pretty high.