With the sanctity of "private property," especially in the West, it is much more difficult to keep mining off of private land. However, in some cases, there is a recourse, as in the proposed Rosemont mine, because the mining company has to use public land in the Coronado National Forest for their facilities and waste dumps (one billion tons) and also roads through the forest into the site.
An important aspect is water, not only the potential pollution (which will require permits to set the amount they are allowed to pollute), but the amount of water used. In Arizona, mining operations are exempt from all water laws, so there is no recourse for us. A mining company can come in, as in the case of Rosemont, and suck a forest dry. At this time, we are attempting to get a Congressional Bill written that will protect the water levels in the National Forests, Wildlife Refuges, National Parks, and designated BLM conservation areas.