#Official Mining Thread

Developments in Regional South Australia. Including Port Lincoln, Victor Harbor, Wallaroo, Gawler and Mount Barker.
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rhino
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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1351 Post by rhino » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:24 pm

Woomera bill passes to free up vast outback mineral resources
The South Australian Government has welcomed the passage of federal legislation freeing up the potential mineral resources in the Woomera Prohibited Area.

The defence zone covers 127,000 square kilometres and Geoscience Australia thinks it contains 62 per cent of known copper and 78 per cent of known uranium resources in Australia.

The legislation passed by Federal Parliament this week will create a regulatory framework for access to the zone, although defence will remain a primary user.

SA Mineral Resources Minister Tom Koutsantonis says it holds enormous economic promise for the state.

"Potentially there are $35 billion worth of projects in this area, now that's what we know. That all depends on feasibility, getting finance, making sure we can prove up the resources but the reality is we know that this area is one of the most prospective areas anywhere in the world, let alone Australia," he said.

"The region already hosts the Challenger gold mine, Prominent Hill copper-gold mine and Peculiar Knob, a high-grade iron ore mine.

"[It] means million of dollars in further investment and hundreds of jobs for South Australians."
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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1352 Post by Waewick » Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:20 pm

Watch us not benefit from uranium mining by legislating the value add to be done here.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1353 Post by Will » Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:34 pm

Waewick wrote:Watch us not benefit from uranium mining by legislating the value add to be done here.
How do we benefit from having the value adding done overseas?

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1354 Post by Aidan » Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:55 pm

Will wrote:
Waewick wrote:Watch us not benefit from uranium mining by legislating the value add to be done here.
How do we benefit from having the value adding done overseas?
There's not always as much value in value adding as most people assume, and investment in value adding adds to the commercial risk, so if BHP (or whoever) aren't allowed to sell the product they mine, they're likely to be discouraged from investing in mining.
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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1355 Post by Waewick » Fri Jul 18, 2014 3:14 pm

Will wrote:
Waewick wrote:Watch us not benefit from uranium mining by legislating the value add to be done here.
How do we benefit from having the value adding done overseas?
We don't. That's the point of my poorly constructed post!

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1356 Post by Waewick » Fri Jul 18, 2014 3:18 pm

Aidan wrote:
Will wrote:
Waewick wrote:Watch us not benefit from uranium mining by legislating the value add to be done here.
How do we benefit from having the value adding done overseas?
There's not always as much value in value adding as most people assume, and investment in value adding adds to the commercial risk, so if BHP (or whoever) aren't allowed to sell the product they mine, they're likely to be discouraged from investing in mining.
Someone will. If there is money to be made someone will do it.


In SA it means jobs and high spec jobs that aren't as vulnerable as the menial ones getting replaced os.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1357 Post by Nathan » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:18 pm

Some Olympic Dam news from The Age. Curious that there's been no mention in the Advertiser...
BHP in fresh bid to unlock Olympic Dam
http://www.smh.com.au/business/mining-a ... zxkqi.html

BHP Billiton is set to undertake a heap leaching trial at Olympic Dam in the hope it may unlock the enormous and complex ore body in the South Australian outback.

BHP already operates an underground mine for base metals and uranium at Olympic Dam, but has long held ambitions to build one of the world's biggest open cut mines on site to tap into the rest of the giant ore body.

Plans to spend close to $US30 billion ($31.9 billion) expanding the mine were deferred in 2012 when BHP decided to spend at least another four years trying to discover a cheaper and more efficient way of building the mine expansion.

The miner is about to take an important step in that process, after confirming on Monday it will conduct a heap leaching trial at the site in the near future.

The trial will see some leaching conducted at the start of the refining process, rather than midway through the process as happens now.

BHP said it believes the tactic could have several advantages over the current refining process, both in terms of the amount of metal produced and by keeping costs low.

Under the trial, BHP will divert less than 1 per cent of the ore mined at Olympic Dam, which represents about 36,000 tonnes.

BHP stressed that heap leaching was just one alternative being considered in the bid to find a way to build the Olympic Dam expansion in a cheaper way.

''The heap leach trial is the next stage of this part of the evaluation process,'' wrote BHP, in documents submitted to the Federal Government.

The deferment of the Olympic Dam expansion in 2012 was a major disappointment for South Australia, which had expected to enjoy the financial benefits of the expansion.

BHP chief executive Andrew Mackenzie has promised in recent months to provide an update on Olympic Dam before the end of the 2014 calendar year.

Olympic Dam contains copper, gold, silver, uranium and potentially other valuable commodities.

In a statement published on Monday, a BHP spokesman said that heap leaching was not the only technical change being considered in the bid to find an affordable way to develop the mine, he said.

''Construction of the demonstration plant is expected to commence in the second half of calendar year 2015 at Olympic Dam with a projected trial period of 36 months which is expected to commence in late 2016.''

Certain federal approvals must be obtained before BHP can conduct the trial.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1358 Post by Nathan » Mon Jul 28, 2014 1:11 pm

And just to answer my question, the Advertiser finally picks up on the story.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1359 Post by rhino » Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:12 pm

From ABC News online:
Rex Minerals' Hillside copper mine gets SA lease approvals

Rex Minerals is pleased its $850 million planned open-cut copper mine near Ardrossan in South Australia has won State Government approval.

Rex says the Hillside project on Yorke Peninsula is among the nation's biggest known open-pit copper reserves.

The company says it will now consider the terms of mining leases offered by the SA Government.

SA Mineral Resources Minister Tom Koutsantonis thinks the balance has been struck between environmental concerns and creating jobs for the mining sector.

He says the State Government expects to get about $30 million annually from royalties.

"There will be noise impacts, there be some dust impacts, there will be visual impacts. You can't have a mine of this size, this close to residents, without there being an impact but we're going to manage those impacts the same way any other industrial activity is managed," he said.

"What the Government is saying is that we are pro-development, you can have a mine and still farm, you can have principles and still thrive."

Yorke Peninsula mayor Ray Agnew says the latest approval offers the prospect of more jobs for the region and possible work for some people losing their current employment in Adelaide.

"Some of the employment opportunities will come from out of the northern suburbs of Adelaide, maybe some of the chaps that have been working in Holden's for example, because they're looking at, as we understand it, employment (at the copper mine) for between 500-700 people and more than that during the construction," he said.

Opponents fear farming impact

The mining plan is not without its opponents, who are upset with a proposed open-cut operation which would be 2.4 kilometres long and a kilometre wide.

Stephen Lodge from the Yorke Peninsula landowners' group says some prime farm land will be at risk.

"[Despite] the fact that it's happening so close to the community, nobody has actually come back and said they're going to do anything about it as far as contaminating crops around the area with dust that's going to fall out or the contamination of the gulf," he said.

"We haven't had any word on what steps are going to be taken. I mean hopefully our regulators are going to have some sort of fail-safe in there."

SA Greens leader Mark Parnell says State Government approval for open-cut mining on some of the state's best cropping land is a blow for the region's farmers.

Federal environmental approval for the project was given earlier in the year.

Rex Minerals has promised adequate dust control procedures and that it will ensure no adverse impact on the marine environment.

The company's managing director Mark Parry says there will be stringent environmental controls on mining operations and the planning work remains to be completed.

"We then have 12 months to work through ... a program for environment protection and rehabilitation. That again will be assessed by the Government. That again will be open for the community to have a look at and that in effect is to ensure we have the management systems and processes which will safeguard stakeholders and the environment," he said.

The company says the copper discovery was made in 2008-09 and it started site drilling in early 2010.

It expects the Hillside mine to have a life of 15 years or more.
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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1360 Post by rhino » Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:09 am

Mine to be open a Dam long time
THE Olympic Dam copper project sits firmly within BHP Billiton's core assets and will be mined for as long as 200 years - decades longer than previously expected, the company indicated yesterday.

Chief executive Andrew Mackenzie said BHP wanted to focus on huge, long-life projects and will split off a new company containing mines which are less lucrative than its best.

BHP wanted to be "simpler and more productive", he said.

Instead of a string of projects around the globe, the slimmed down BHP minerals' portfolio would focus on just six assets, including Olympic Dam in South Australia's Far North.

"By concentrating on what we do best, the development and operation of major basins, we can improve our productivity further, faster and with greater certainty," Mr Mackenzie said.

"The BHP Billiton of the future will be concentrated on some of the world's best ore bodies of enormous scale.

"There are tens - or hundred plus years - of resources waiting to be developed by what we think will be increasingly an advanced manufacturing approach because of that longevity and world-leading scale."

In a presentation on the proposed split, BHP listed Olympic Dam as its asset with the longest expected mine life, up to 200 years. Previous estimates have put its life at more than 100 years although a more rigorously calculated date in the 2013 annual report was 56 years.

Now Australia's biggest underground mine, the company is researching a cost-effective expansion to reach and process the deep, complex ore body.

Mr Mackenzie said there would be no easy ride, and BHP's projects would have to fight with each other to get BHP board approval for investment money.

Annual capital expenditure would fall from $15 billion a year to $14 billion if the split is approved.

"The competition will be intense and get more intense," he said. Mr Mackenzie was speaking after the BHP Billiton group posted a full year profit of $US13.8 billion, up 23 per cent.

In a pleasing sign for Olympic Dam, record mining rates helped swing its contribution to a $34 million underlying pre-tax profit for 2013-14 compared to a $4 million loss the year before.

Olympic Dam revenue fell 5 per cent to $1.777 billion.
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Rhino

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1361 Post by Wayno » Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:07 pm

200 years!

On the ODX expansion topic it seems 2020 is now the expected timeframe. This allows time for the new mineral extraction techniques to be refined, and for an 'uptick' in the world market & demand for ODX resource.
Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1362 Post by ml69 » Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:50 pm

Wayno wrote:200 years!

On the ODX expansion topic it seems 2020 is now the expected timeframe. This allows time for the new mineral extraction techniques to be refined, and for an 'uptick' in the world market & demand for ODX resource.
2020 for start of expansion construction, or for completion of the expansion?

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1363 Post by Wayno » Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:16 pm

ml69 wrote:2020 for start of expansion construction, or for completion of the expansion?
Yes ;-) all depends on the mix of technologies to be used, world economics, etc.

For example I attended a banking forum in Bangkok only yesterday where general consensus is the GFC still has five years to run - and that's just to regain the global economic status quo (down, down, deeper and down).
Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1364 Post by skyliner » Sat Sep 06, 2014 8:27 am

Anybody see the report on Abbott's deal re uranium with India. Will be interesting to see if it puts the accelerator on ODX - waiting to pick up on this.

In the bigger scheme of things I have noticed a slowdown in everything since ODX was put off/canceled. reflect back to when there were 18 - 19 cranes in the city - now 9. Regional SA, same pattern - hardly any posts now. WE need this deal to pay off for SA.

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Re: #Official Mining Thread

#1365 Post by ghs » Sat Sep 06, 2014 7:14 pm

Skyliner, there's a long list of proposals at the moment, whether they go ahead or not
is another thing. I don't believe that the city is slowing down especially when Vue has just started.

There's a list of about 20 potential new buildings.

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