Perth-based mineral exploration company Poseidon Nickel has secured a conditional approval from the Minister for State Development Colin Barnett MLA to recommence nickel mining at the Mt Windarra underground mine.
The mine is located in the North Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia and hosts total indicated and inferred nickel sulphide resources of 9,274,000t at 1.56 N% grade.
The company's application to restart mining included all requisite environmental and infrastructure approvals assessed by the Department of State Development (DSD) and other agencies in the past few months.
After 21 years of mining, production at the site ceased in 1990 and by 1995 the processing plant was demolished and removed. The site was then rehabilitated and by 2007 the infrastructure refurbishment was well underway and exploration drilling had begun.
On approval, Poseidon expects to begin mining for nickel, construct a nickel flotation concentrator plant and gold tailings re-treatment facility, and install an in-pit tailings deposition.
Having completed the definitive feasibility study, the company expects the first concentrate production in 2014.
Poseidon managing director and CEO David Singleton said that the outcome is significant as it essentially provides statutory approval for the project subject only to final financing and offtake.
"This announcement clears the environmental and construction approval risk for the project prior to financing, and as a result we maintain an expectation of nickel mining restarting in this area of the Goldfields.
"We recently announced the completion of the definitive feasibility study for the project and, as announced previously, are continuing our preparations for financing the project," Singleton added.
Image: Poseidon will soon begin mining at the Windarra Nickel project in Western Australia. Photo: Poseidon Nickel Limited.