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'Stones found in KZN are quartz crystals not diamonds but they aren't valueless'

21 June 2021 3:44 PM
Tags:
Geologist
KwaHlathi
diamond rush
quartz crystal
KwaHlathi village
Dr Gideon Groenewald

Midday Report host Mandy Wiener chats to geologist Dr. Gideon Groenewald about the KwaHlathi stones that turned out to be quartz crystals.
  • It turns out the stones that set off a "diamond rush" in KZN are not diamonds
  • Experts have found that the stones are actually quartz crystals
  • Although quartz crystals are less valuable than diamonds, Geologist Dr Gideon Groenewald says they are still worth something
  • Groenewald believes there are hidden treasures across South Africa still waiting to be discovered

'Diamonds' found at kwaHlati. Image: Department of Mineral Resources and Energy @DMRE_ZA

The stones that were found in KwaHlathi, near Ladysmith in KwaZulu-Natal are not diamonds but quartz crystals.

Renowned geologist Dr. Gideon Groenewald says he's not surprised by the announcement because quartz is one of the most common rock-forming minerals in the world.

Hundreds of people flocked to the remote village of KwaHlathi last week after a cattle herder first discovered a stone in an open field.

RELATED: PHOTOS: Diamonds or quartz? Geologist weighs on 'diamond rush' in KZN

On Sunday, KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development MEC Ravi Pillay revealed that the stones were not diamonds as some had hoped.

According to Groenewald, a single quartz crystal can be sold for as much 7 US dollars.

"These are not valueless little crystals, they are just less valuable than diamonds because there are so many of them", he tells CapeTalk.

I'm not surprised at all that they are quartz crystals. In fact, quartz is the most abundant mineral that we find on earth.

Dr Gideon Groenewald

The only difference is, the crystals these people discovered were very unique in the fact that they were near-perfect quartz crystals and are very difficult to find. You don't find them every day.

Dr Gideon Groenewald

I would have been very, very excited if they were [diamonds] because I still believe there are several places in South Africa where there are hidden treasures that we haven't discovered.

Dr Gideon Groenewald



21 June 2021 3:44 PM
Tags:
Geologist
KwaHlathi
diamond rush
quartz crystal
KwaHlathi village
Dr Gideon Groenewald

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