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Today Coober Pedy contains more than 70 individual opal fields with more than 250,000 mine shafts but not one able to claim to be the major opal producer. This is in spite of Coober Pedy producing most of the world's much sought after white opal. This has come about as a result of a law limiting each prospector to an area of 15.3 square metres therefore cutting out any large scale development.

The True Gem of the Outback

Coober Pedy is in the outback of South Australia, 750 kilometres north of the capital, Adelaide. A place where many of the locals choose to live underground rather than in houses built above the ground. Underground living gives you relief from the summer heat and protection from the winter cold.

The Gem Centre of the World is a Treeless Stony Desert

The town of Coober Pedy is situated in a treeless, stony desert on the outskirts of of the Stuart Ranges. It has an extremely low rainfall which accounts for the lack of vegetation, the soil is infertile anyway and water costs a fortune. But it is home to the white opal, a gemstone found among the light porous sandstone. The presence of opal among the sandstone is found to follow veins that can occur either horizontally or in steep dipping verticals, sometimes as far as 25 metres below the surface. However, the opal deposits are by no means predictable and where one claim can be quite fruitful the adjoining claim is often proven to be quite barren.

Four Major Opal Producing Locations in Australia

Although Coober Pedy produces 95 percent of the worlds finest opals it is but one of four Australian opal producing locations, these being:

1. Coober Pedy. The largest milky or white opal producer of them all located in outback South Australia

2. Andamooka. Another outback South Australian opal mining town that produces the white opal

3. Lightening Ridge. The New South Wales home of the black opal

4. White Cliffs. The Queensland boulder opal producer.

All towns found around the ridge of the ancient inland sea that once existed in central Australia.

Each opal town is unruly and wild, easily identified with a large number of mullock humps and a moonscape appearance. The people living there have to live with an unforgiving climate but for those who persist there is often a reward coming their way sooner or later.

A Good Export Earner for the Australian Economy

Between 2000 and 2005 Australian production of uncut gemstones for export varied between $100 and $200 million annually. For the financial year 1996/97 the figure was $85 million, 1997/98 $69 million and 1998/99 it was $60 million.

The Opal Capital of the World

Coober Pedy can rightly claim to be the opal capital of the world and although there are other opal mining town is Australia, Coober Pedy is by far the biggest in both size and annual production results. It is ironic that as you approach Coober Pedy from either the north or the south along the Stuart Highway, the area becomes harsher and more barren, yet underneath your very feet can be found some of the most beautiful gems that are held in high acclaim around the world.

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Boilermakers required for various roles for fixed plant and mobile equipment shutdowns

Riggers Dido

Operator Maintainer
Bis Industries requires an Operator Maintainer to join our operations at Karara, this is offered FIFO on 2:1 roster from Perth, come join the team!

Mc Truck Drivers Gunnedah
Bis Industries is seeking MC Drivers commencing at Gunnedah on a Monday to Friday roster and every other Saturday as required.

Mc Drivers Goldfields
Seeking expressions of interest from experienced MC Drivers, in consideration for multiple opportunities across our operations in the Goldfields.

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