Arizona ranked fourth in nonfuel mineral production value in 2001, thanks to the state's copper industry. According to US Geological Survey estimates, nonfuel mineral production in Arizona during 2001was valued at $2.17 billion, down 14% from 2000. Copper represented 68% of the nonfuel mineral production value in 2001. Construction sand and gravel was the state's 2nd-leading nonfuel mineral, followed by portland cement, molybdenum concentrates, and crushed stone. According to preliminary figures, production and values in 2001 for principal minerals are as follows: copper, 875,000 metric tons ($1.5 billion); sand and gravel, 56.6 million metric tons ($294 million); and crushed stone, 7 million metric tons ($43.3 million). In 2000 silver production was 132 metric tons ($21.2 million), and gold production in 1999 was 786 kg ($7 million).
Arizona continued to lead the country in copper production in 2001, a rank it has held for more than 80 years. The state accounted for almost two-thirds of all copper mined and produced in the US. Arizona also ranked 1st in production of molybdenum; 2nd in gemstones; 3rd in perlite; 4th in construction sand and gravel, silver, and zeolites; 5th in pumice and pumicite; 6th in iron oxide; 7th in bentonite; and 8th in dimension stone.
Population growth and freeway construction projects in metropolitan Phoenix have contributed to Arizona's ranking as the nation's fourth-largest producer of sand and gravel.