I will start by telling you that I am a lay person, not a scientist or a potash investor. The conclusions I draw in my Live Journal article and its original version, at Little Colorado River Basin article are mine alone. Although I did not publish a full bibliography of my sources, the links on my article are intended to send the reader to appropriate information on the subject.
It is not an understatement to say that no mining entity wants to divulge more than they must in order to satisfy regulators. Ringbolt, Passport and Karlsson are each listed in regulatory filings or in their own press releases. Karlsson is the most mysterious. Based on legal documents available on the web, it appears (I repeat, appears) that Karlsson gained or at least retained control of significant holdings in the Holbrook basin via court cases settled in Arizona. To me, it looks like “Karlsson Group” could be one person, with the name Anders Karlsson. There is no website for the Karlsson Group, but elsewhere they are cited as a private California corporation.
Here is a link between Passport Potash and Karlsson . Here is a link between Passport Potash and Ringbolt. Reuters has an excellent compilation of news,, including an indirect link between Ringbolt/Karlsson.
There are financial links between all three companies, although Passport Potash seems to be taking the lead role in public and investor relations. Are there other mining companies in the Holbrook Basin with sufficient contiguous acreage and water rights to create an in-situ recovery (ISR) mine there? I cannot say for sure. The only mining entity with blessings from the Hopi Tribe is the Passport/Ringbolt/Karlsson group. Did Karlsson make a shrewd investment in the area and then fend off other claimants to the property? I cannot say for sure, but Karlsson is throwing their (his?) substantial acreage into the Passport Project.
Perhaps “consortium” is too strong a word, but in publishing it that way, I thought it might provoke debate on that matter. Your email tells me that people are listening. It will take a better researcher than I to determine exactly who owns or controls which lands in the Holbrook Basin. I see no grand conspiracy here, but the corporate veil seems to crash down hard in the area, leaving a metaphorical, if not an actual cloud of dust across the whole subject of potash mining in the Four Corners states.
Sincerely, Jim McGillis
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