August's top stories: Adani’s Carmichael case dismissal, BHP's $2.46bn investment

The Queensland Court of Appeal in Australia quashed a case against Adani’s $16bn Carmichael coal mine, Glencore secured mining leases for $5.54bn Wandoan coal project, BHP approved $2.46bn investment in Chile’s Spence mine. Mining-technology.com wraps-up the key headlines from August 2017.


Queensland court dismisses case against Adani’s $16bn Carmichael mine

The Queensland Court of Appeal in Australia quashed a case against Indian firm Adani’s $16bn Carmichael coal mine, clearing the legal hurdle for the long-pending construction of the project.

The case was filed by Adrian Burragubba, an activist who claimed to be representing the Wangan and Jagalingou (W&J) communities, challenged the state government’s approval of a mining lease for the project.

Welcoming the decision taken by the court, Adani remarked that it represents yet another independent judicial judgement in favour of around eight years of development planning and approvals.


Glencore secures mining leases for $5.54bn Wandoan coal project in Queensland

Anglo-Australian mining company Glencore secured leases for the proposed A$7bn ($5.54bn) Wandoan coal project, located near Roma in the Surat Basin in south-western Queensland.

Queensland Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham approved three 27-year leases for the first stage of the project, which cover a combined area of more than 30,000ha.

The project is being undertaken as a joint venture between Glencore Coal Queensland (75%), ICRA Wandoan (12.5%) and Sumisho Coal Australia (12.5%).


BHP approves $2.46bn investment in Chile’s Spence mine

BHP approved a $2.46bn capital expenditure programme at the Spence open-cut copper mine in northern Chile, which will extend the mine life by more than 50 years.

The spending will be directed towards the Spence Growth Option (SGO) project, which is part of the company’s strategy to achieve near-term, valuable copper production.

With first production scheduled in 2021, the project is expected to yield incremental production of 185ktpa of payable copper in concentrate and 4,000tpa of payable molybdenum, in the first ten years of operation.


China Minmetals to invest $1.5bn in Hunan’s smelting facilities

China Minmetals unveiled plans to invest CNY10bn ($1.5bn) to enhance capabilities at its copper, lead and zinc smelting facilities in the Hunan province, according to Reuters. 

China Minmetals Nonferrous Metals chairman Huang Guoping was cited by Huasheng Online, a website run by the Hunan provincial government, in a report stating that the company is expected to invest in new smelting technology this month in order to eliminate the discharge of industrial wastewater.

The company is planning to infuse funds in facilities in the Shuikoushan area, located in the south of Hunan in south-central China, reported Huasheng.


Red 5 to acquire assets in Western Australia's Eastern Goldfields region

Red 5 signed agreements worth around $34m for the acquisition of gold assets in the Eastern Goldfields vicinity of Western Australia, with the aim of improving its portfolio in the region.

The company has agreed to acquire the operating Darlot Gold Mine from a subsidiary of Gold Fields for $18.5m. The mine is located around 900km north-east (NE) of Perth in the Leonora-Leinster mineral province.

It also agreed to acquire the King of the Hills (KOTH) gold project located about 80km south of Darlot, from Saracen Mineral Holdings for a sum of $16m. 


New research demonstrates potential to unearth minerals from snow, soil and trees

Researchers in Canada developed new analytical methods that enable miners to use snow, soil and trees to discover buried mineral deposits, as part of a new project funded by Geoscience BC.

The methodologies created new laboratory techniques and are expected to reduce the environmental impact of mineral exploration.

The project measured the concentration of the halogen elements fluorine, bromine, chlorine and iodine in samples that have been collected from Vancouver Island at the Mount Washington gold-copper-silver prospect and the Lara zinc-copper-lead-silver-gold showing.


Fluor awarded construction contract for BHP’s South Flank project in Western Australia

US-based engineering services firm Fluor was selected to provide project and construction management services at Anglo-Australian multinational mining company BHP Billiton’s South Flank iron ore project in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. 

Under the contract, the project will be jointly managed by the two companies.

The parties will work together to optimise the feasibility study design that will focus on execution readiness and capital efficiency.


Aluminium Corp of China to invest $500m in Guinean project

Aluminium Corp of China (Chalco) revealed plans to invest $500m into a new bauxite production project in Guinea, according to Reuters.

Bauxite is the primary source used to make aluminium.

Secured after the Guinea mines Minister Abdoulaye Magassouba's visit to China, the deal follows similar investments in the nation by other Chinese companies.


Thailand lifts ban on Kingsgate Consolidated’s Chatree Mine

The Thai Government lifted the ‘temporary suspension’ of the Chatree Mine, which is operated by Akara Resources Public Company, a subsidiary of Kingsgate Consolidated.

Following the move, representatives of Kingsgate held negotiations with officials of the Royal Thai Government to reach a possible settlement of its claims against the government in accordance with the Australia-Thailand free trade agreement (TAFTA).

The ban was imposed in December last year by the military government under Section 44, resulting in more than 1,000 job cuts, according to the Bangkok Post.


Para Resources to acquire Gold Road mine in Arizona, US

Para Resources signed an agreement with Mojave Desert Minerals to acquire the Gold Road mine located in Oatman, Arizona, US.

Para will make an aggregate payment of around $6.76m under the agreement, including $767,540 to be paid at the closure of the deal. 

The Gold Road mine is a fully permitted asset that has produced more than 700,000oz of gold and operated as recently as 2016.