appleton-whittell

Land Exchange

For the project to move forward, Resolution Copper must first complete extensive studies and will invest more than $1 billion in exploratory activities. To accomplish this, we need access to lands located in and around the Oak Flat area that are currently excluded from mining by federal law. We’ve determined that an exchange of lands, as described in the Southeast Arizona Land Exchange and Conservation Act, would allow us to secure the access we need to develop the safest, least intrusive mine possible.


The Land Exchange will allow the Resolution Copper Project to proceed, providing long-term economic and social benefits to the people of Arizona, while preserving more than 5,300 acres of high-quality Arizona conservation lands.

Notable Provisions of the Legislation

  • Land in and around the Oak Flat Campground, which is needed for our mining operations, will be transferred from the federal government to Resolution Copper. In return, Resolution Copper will transfer to the government more than 5,300 acres of high-priority conservation lands.
  • 110 acres of Resolution Copper’s private land transferred to the US Forest Service to protect the south end of Apache Leap.
  • The scenic escarpment above the Town of Superior, known as Apache Leap, remains under management of the US Forest Service.
  • 3,050 acres known as the 7B Ranch on the San Pedro River, possibly the largest and oldest mesquite bosque in Arizona, transfers to the Bureau of Land Management and becomes a new unit of the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area.
  • The BLM acquires an additional 940-acre parcel inside the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch and Las Cienegas National Conservation Area.
  • Government-to-government consultation with our Native American neighbors remains a part of the bill.

superiorBefore completion of the land trade, the federal lands and company lands included in the exchange will go through an independent appraisal as directed by federal regulations. Through this process, the federal government will determine the fair market price of the property. This process is well-documented and described in detail in the Federal Uniform Land Appraisal book, or “Yellow Book,” a book of government regulations that provides the methods and rules for determining property values for this type of transaction.

If the value of the federal lands is determined in this process to be higher than that of the Resolution Copper lands offered in the exchange, the company will equalize the value of the exchange, either through a payment to the United States treasury or through donation of additional lands identified during the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process to be of environmental value.

To learn more, download the following factsheets:

Land Exchange Parcels

The Southeast Arizona Land Exchange and Conservation Act of 2013 calls for the transfer of several environmentally important and biologically diverse land parcels privately owned by Resolution Copper throughout Southeast Arizona. You can read more about each land parcel by clicking on the individual fact sheets below. Alternatively, click here to read all of them.

House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources

The Southeast Arizona Land Exchange and Conservation Act of 2013 (H.R. 687) was considered by the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources. You can view the video archive of the hearings here:

Resolution Copper Mining’s Supplemental Information Sheets