The limestone resources of Southland, New Zealand

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Willett, R.W. 1950 The limestone resources of Southland, New Zealand. Wellington: Government Printer. New Zealand Geological Survey bulletin 49 41 p.

Abstract: Extensive Mid-Tertiary limestone deposits occur at many places in Southland from Mataura River in the east to Waiau River in the west. Many of the deposits are close to rail; this coupled with the absence of overburden has made for easy working. Production is confined to agricultural lime, both carbonate and burnt, the latter forming but a small part of the total. Since 1916 the total output has risen from 4,300 tons to 266,672 tons in 1944. The limestones vary in carbonate content from area to area and within the deposits themselves. At the present time all lime produced is used by the agricultural industry. The Southland soils require much lime, and it is likely that when more phosphate is available the present heavy demand will not fall away, but rather, the increase over the last 10 years, will continue. The industry is capable of expansion and there is abundant available limestone, the total being estimated at 4,500 million tons. This report describes the present development, quarries, production and plants. The quantity and fineness of grinding are discussed, the latter from the point of view of reaction of the soil. The undeveloped resources and future of the industry are also discussed. Graphs showing total production, number of quarries and screen analyses, together with maps showing the extent of the limestone deposits are presented. (auth/DG)