Projects

Pit extension project approved for Hunter Valley coal mine

Close to two million tonnes more coal will be extracted from a Hunter Valley mine following an approval to modify an existing development consent with conditions by the NSW Independent Planning Commission. Mt Owen Pty Ltd sought approval to extend the Barrett Pit at its Glendell Coal Mine, 20km northwest of Singleton, to recover an additional 1.97 million tonnes of run-of-mine (ROM) coal. The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment’s whole-of-government assessment report found the proposed modification would result in: a net increase in disturbance area of 4.3 hectares a net 0.4-hectare ... more

Newmont sells stake in Continental Gold for $260M

Newmont Corporation has successfully completed the sale of its 19.9 per cent equity stake and convertible bond in Continental Gold Inc. for $260 million in cash. The sale was part of a contractual arrangement to support Zijin Mining Group’s acquisition of Continental. Tom Palmer, President and Chief Executive Officer said selling the Continental stake into a strong bid allowed the company to generate $260 million in cash that will support its disciplined approach to capital allocation, including strengthening the company’s investment grade balance sheet, investing in the highest returning projects, and re... more

Carrapateena achieves nameplate milling rate

OZ Minerals’ Carrapateena mine in South Australia has now achieved nameplate mill throughput rate, with stable operational periods at 500 tonnes per hour and in excess of 90 per cent runtime achieved for 24-hour periods. Flotation recovery for several shifts has reportedly already exceeded 90 per cent, with concentrate grades in excess of 40 per cent copper. In commenting on the milestone, OZ Minerals Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Cole, said while the mine produced first concentrate in December, the minerals processing plant was subject to further work by the construction contractors to complete final ... more

Major quartz vein gold system found at Yandal Gold Project

Toro Energy Limited has announced that assay results from the 2019 maiden RC drilling programme, at the company’s 100 per cent owned Yandal Gold Project in Western Australia, along with detailed surface mapping, have confirmed that a major quartz vein gold system has been intersected in Toro’s first drill holes in the Golden Ways Target Area. Four reverse circulation (RC) drill holes were completed for a total of 792m in Toro’s maiden drill programme at Golden Ways. Drill holes TERC09, TERC10 and TERC11 aimed to test anomalies and alteration from historical drilling, while TERC12 aimed to test a large o... more

Seismic survey commences at QEM’s flagship Julia Creek Project

A seismic survey program has commenced on QEM Limited's (QEM) 100 per cent owned Julia Creek project, covering approximately 496 square kilometres in the Julia Creek area of North Western Queensland. Julia Creek is located over the vast Toolebuc Formation, which is the host to widespread vanadium mineralisation, and is considered an ‘oil shale’, meaning it has the potential to hold significant petroleum resources. QEM announced in February this year that it had engaged geological service company, Velseis Pty Ltd, to conduct the 26-kilometre 2-D seismic survey which would outline the geological structur... more

Contract awarded for Newcastle LNG import terminal work

EPIK Co. Ltd. has executed an agreement with Watpac for the provision of  design, engineering and construction services for the onshore infrastructure components of the Newcastle LNG floating storage regasification unit (FSRU) import terminal at the Port of Newcastle. Situated at the back-end of the existing gas transmission network, the Port of Newcastle is one of Australia’s largest ports and a major trade and logistics hub, making it an ideal area to develop an LNG import terminal. The potential investment for the Newcastle LNG project is estimated to be approximately $AU547 million and is set to inc... more

Sheffield locks in LNG supply agreement for Thunderbird

Sheffield Resources Limited has secured a 15-year agreement with Woodside Energy Limited and Energy Developments Pty Ltd (EDL) for the supply and delivery of 1,950 terajoules per annum of liquified natural gas (LNG) to the Thunderbird Mineral Sands Project, in northern Western Australia. As per the agreement, LNG will be supplied from Woodside’s Pluto LNG Truck Loading Facility near Karratha and transported to Thunderbird’s LNG storage facility by a newly formed joint venture between Woodside and EDL. The Woodside-EDL joint venture will own and operate a purpose-built road tanker fleet to deliver the L... more

Alcoa secures BHP, Chevron and Woodside gas deals

Western Australia’s single largest user of natural gas, Alcoa of Australia Limited has secured three new gas supply agreements which in full will supply close to 25 per cent of the company’s gas requirements from 2020. The agreements with BHP, Woodside and Chevron coupled with other gas supply contracts, which were announced in 2015 (Quadrant Energy and Santos), complete Alcoa’s gas portfolio to fuel its Kwinana, Pinjarra and Wagerup alumina refineries for the mid-term. The company consumes approximately 40 per cent of the gas supplied to the south west of Western Australia and about 25 per cent of t... more

New renewable energy generation precinct to create jobs

A new wind farm near Warwick in Queensland will be built by publicly owned generator CleanCo building, as part of a precinct that will create 400 jobs and supply up to nearly 700,000 homes. Early works are expected to start later this year, with construction scheduled to run from mid-2021 to 2024, with the Precinct generating its first power from mid-2022. Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad said the wind farm will be part of the 1026-megawatt MacIntyre Wind Farm Precinct on the Southern Downs. “For the next few months, the entire focus of the Queensland Government is on protecting Queenslanders... more

Plans for world-first solar power plant in Victoria

The Australian Renewable Agency (ARENA) has announced $3 million in funding to RayGen Resources Pty Ltd (RayGen) to conduct a technical and commercial feasibility study for a 4 MW ‘solar hydro’ power plant to be built in north-western Victoria. In a world-first, the Melbourne based renewable energy startup RayGen is proposing to build a fully dispatchable renewable energy facility that will use their innovative concentrated solar PV technology known as PV Ultra and combine it with their Thermal Hydro technology to generate renewable energy and provide large scale energy storage. The grid-scale power plant... more

The Pilbara looks to renewable hydrogen and ammonia production

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has announced $995,000 in funding to Yara Pilbara Fertilisers Pty Ltd to support a feasibility study for the production of renewable hydrogen and ammonia. The feasibility study will explore the potential to make green hydrogen work at industrial scale at Yara’s existing ammonia production facility in the Pilbara. Yara will investigate producing renewable hydrogen via electrolysis powered by onsite solar PV. The renewable hydrogen produced will displace 30,000 tonnes per year of hydrogen which Yara currently derives from fossil fuels. The blended hydrogen wil... more

$768M solar farm receives conditional approval

The New South Wales' Independent Planning Commission has approved a new $768- million solar farm on the Northern Tablelands, with conditions. UPC Renewables Australia Pty Ltd (the Applicant) sought planning approval for the 720- megawatt New England Solar Farm on 3362 hectares of agricultural land, 6km east of Uralla. The solar farm will comprise more than 2.4 million solar panels, 150 power conversion units and a lithium-ion battery storage facility. It will connect to TransGrid’s existing transmission line that transects the development site. The Department of Planning, Industry & Environment fi... more

$1B transmission line project declared a coordinated project

The Queensland Government has ticked off a major milestone on a proposed $1 billion overhead high-voltage electricity transmission line which would connect major energy users and North West Queensland’s public to the national electricity grid. Queensland’s independent Coordinator-General declared CuString Pty Ltd’s CopperString Project a ‘coordinated project’ on 27 April. The proposed project is a 1,100-kilometre 275-kilovolt overhead high-voltage electricity transmission line connecting the North West Minerals Provence and Mount Isa to the National Electricity Market grid south of Townsville. ... more

QLD provides $100m to keep Haughton pipeline moving

The Queensland Government has fast-tracked $100 million, as part of its $225 million commitment to Townsville’s water security, to keep construction of the Haughton 36.5 kilometre water pipeline moving. Member for Townsville, Scott Stewart said the $100 million payment (paid last week) would go towards supporting up to 1000 jobs over the life of the project. “We all know Townsville has been doing it tough and is currently recovering from an unprecedented flooding event. The jobs that flow from the Haughton pipeline are a shot in the arm during the rebuilding period,” Mr Stewart said. There are mo... more

Construction begins on Australia’s biggest lithium processing plant

Construction of the $1 billion Albemarle Kemerton Plant in Western Australia, Australia’s largest lithium processing plant, has commenced. The plant will become Australia's largest lithium hydroxide plant, with approval to produce up to 100,000 tonnes per annum of premium battery grade lithium hydroxide. Western Australia is currently the number one global producer of lithium, the second largest global producer of rare earths, the third largest global producer of cobalt and the fourth largest global producer of nickel. The Government of Western Australia is working with Albemarle to ensure job opportu... more

Construction commences on Australia’s first thermal waste-to-energy facility

Premier of Western Australia Mark McGowan, and Federal Minister for the Environment Melissa Price, have officially ‘turned the sod’ at Australia’s first thermal waste-to-energy facility in Kwinana, Western Australia. The facility, named Avertas Energy, will use state-of-the-art technology to process 400,000 tonnes of household, commercial and industrial waste each year to significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions by more than 400,000 tonnes (equivalent to taking 85,000 cars off Perth’s roads). Once operational in 2021, the facility will generate and export 36 megawatts of baseload electricity t... more

AngloGold Ashanti agrees to sell South African assets

AngloGold Ashanti has reached an agreement to sell its remaining South African producing assets and related liabilities to Harmony Gold Mining Company Limited. Consideration for the transaction is in cash and deferred payments with expected proceeds of around $300 million, subject to subsequent performance, and with additional proceeds if the West Wits assets are developed below current infrastructure. AngloGold Ashanti announced in May 2019 that it was undertaking a process to review sale options for the portfolio of assets, principally comprising the Mponeng underground mine, where further capital, neces... more

Rio Tinto to review future of smelter in Iceland

Rio Tinto has announced the company will conduct a strategic review of the ISAL smelter in Iceland, to determine the operation’s ongoing viability and explore options to improve its competitive position. ISAL is expected to remain unprofitable in the short to medium term in the challenging conditions facing the aluminium industry, due to the smelter’s uncompetitive energy costs and historically low aluminium prices. Rio Tinto will continue discussions with the Government of Iceland and power provider Landsvirkjun on how the smelter can return to profitability and become competitive in the global market... more

Glencore lands five-year deal to supply cobalt hydroxide

Glencore has signed a five-year agreement for the supply of cobalt hydroxide for use in lithium-ion batteries. Under the terms of the new supply contract, Glencore will provide up to 21,000 tonnes of cobalt contained in cobalt hydroxide between 2020 and 2024 to Samsung SDI . Glencore produced 42.2 kilotonnes of cobalt in 2018, mainly as a by-product of copper mining. The cobalt will be sourced from Glencore's Katanga and Mutanda operations which are located in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Glencore and Samsung SDI state that they are committed to ensuring the ethical and responsible prod... more

Rio Tinto to curtail operations at Richards Bay Minerals

Rio Tinto has decided to curtail operations at Richards Bay Minerals (RBM) in South Africa to ensure the safety and security of its employees due to an escalation in violence in the communities surrounding the operations. RBM is South Africa’s largest mineral sands producer and beneficiation company. It produces predominantly rutile, zircon, titania slag and high purity iron. Rio Tinto noted that there has been an escalation of criminal activity towards RBM employees and one was shot and seriously injured in the last few days. As a result, all mining operations at RBM have been halted and the smelters... more