Mining companies have forgotten why they exist, a type of hypoxia caused from a prolonged period of sky-high metal prices.
It's just as well miners are optimistic because we face some heavy challenges, especially in the platinum sector where costs will be 20% higher over 13 months.
Local skills are hard to come by in mining provinces such as Zambia's copperbelt which throws up challenges in completing environmental studies for projects.
All too often mining and construction companies make assumptions about their projects that lead them down the road to disaster.
Ben Magara, CEO of Lonmin, said the company had worked to address the distrust between labour and management since his appointment in 2013.
The South African government can amend its legislation if a court ruling proves the 'once-empowered, always-empowered' principle is supported in the charter.
Mining firms have no option but to lock their black partners into BEE structures which in turn limits the scope for real empowerment.
Johannesburg has a rich legacy in gold mining, but mining firms today will fail that legacy if they fail to give back to communities.
The potential knock-on effects of seeking legal clarity on aspects of the mining charter could result in protracted delays, rejoinders and sector uncertainty.
Industrial companies innovate constantly and assume lower prices will prevail in future. Mining companies used to operate like that. Now they have to again.