ELKO — Nevada gold mines produced only about 6 percent more gold in 2010 than they did the year before but the value of that gold rose by 33 percent.
State Minerals Deputy Administrator Doug Driesner said that Nevada mines produced 5.34 million ounces of gold last year. The Elko Daily Free Press said that translates into a value of about $6.54 billion.
Production in 2009 totaled 5.03 million ounces worth about $4.9 billion.
Nevada now ranks fifth in the world in gold production behind China, Australia, South Africa and Peru.
Although production is up, Nevada gold mines are lagging behind peak production years over the past 15 years, including 6.9 million ounces in 2004 and 7.85 million ounces in 1997.