Re: You don't own the air above your ground
They also own land rights to the ground underneath them
I think not, but feel free to educate me.
which is why miners have to buy or lease mineral rights from the land owners
Now I could be very mistaken, but as I see it mining always involves significant ground-level activities (huge holes, trucks, specialized building most of the time); it totally makes sense that you'd have to pay the landlord for that.
You'll find that miners also have to get a (costly) permit from the State, often with very well-defined quotas (just ask them). Just as if the underground stuff belonged to the State, innit?