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ASARCO

American Smelting and Refining Company

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What does ASARCO mean?

Asarco
Asarco LLC (American Smelting and Refining Company) is a mining, smelting, and refining company based in Tucson, Arizona, which mines and processes primarily copper. The company is a subsidiary of Grupo México since 1999. Its three largest open-pit mines are the Mission, Silver Bell and Ray mines in Arizona. Its mines produce 350,000,000 to 400,000,000 pounds (160,000,000 to 180,000,000 kg) of copper a year. Asarco conducts solvent extraction and electrowinning at the Ray and Silver Bell mines in Pima County, Arizona, and Pinal County, Arizona, and operates a smelter in Hayden, Arizona. Asarco's smelting plant in El Paso, Texas, was suspended in 1999 and then demolished on April 13, 2013. Before closing, the plant produced 1,000,000,000 pounds (450,000,000 kg) of anodes each year. Refining at the mines as well as at a copper refinery in Amarillo, Texas, produce 375,000,000 pounds (170,000,000 kg) of refined copper each year. Asarco's hourly workers are primarily represented by the United Steelworkers. Asarco has 20 superfund sites across the United States, and it is subject to considerable litigation over pollution. After emerging from bankruptcy in 2008, it made a settlement with the government of $1.79 billion for contamination at various sites; the funds were allotted to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for cleanup at 26 sites around the country.

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