September’s top news stories

7 October 2019 (Last Updated October 11th, 2019 13:00)

Thiess has received a contract extension valued at A$1.3bn ($893m) to provide mining services at Curragh mine, and an estimated 30 people have died following a landslide at an illegal gold mine in Chad.

September’s top news stories
The Government of India aims to allow companies with winning bids to begin development of the coal blocks by early next year. Credit: hangela from Pixabay.

Thiess wins $890m contract extension for Curragh Mine in Queensland

CIMIC Group’s contract mining company Thiess received a contract extension valued at A$1.3bn ($893m) to provide mining services at Coronado Global Resources’ Curragh mine in Queensland, Australia.

Under the terms of the six-year contract, Thiess will continue to provide overburden removal and haulage, mining and run of mine (RoM) re-handling services, equipment maintenance and pit dewatering services at the mine.

The Curragh mine is located in the metallurgical coal-rich Bowen Basin. Thiess has been offering services at the mine since 2004.

Landslide at Chad gold mine leads to 30 fatalities

An estimated 30 people died following a landslide at an illegal gold mine in Chad in the Tibesti region near the Libyan border.

Chad Defence Minister Mahamat Abali Sala told said that following the mine collapse, more victims might still be buried in the rubble.

The region’s poor communities have been seeking a share of the vast gold resources, which are usually dug up by international mining majors, processed and sent overseas.

India to invite bids for coal mining blocks before year-end

The Government of India planned to invite bids from companies worldwide for coal mining blocks before the end of this year.

The move will put an end to Coal India’s near-monopoly in fuel provision, as the nation is in the process of cutting down imports.

Coal stands among the top five commodities imported by India. It is believed that coal imports are surging after the government could not open the industry to competition, even by passing a liberalisation policy 19 months ago.

Vale halts mining operations in Brucutu, Brazil

Brazilian-based company Vale was ordered to stop operations at its iron ore mine in Brucutu.

The mine is located in the municipality of São Gonçalo do Rio Abaixo in the Minas Gerais province.

The iron ore miner said that the suspension will not hamper production at the Brucutu mine.

BHP partners with Dyno Nobel to improve productivity

BHP signed an agreement with Incitec Pivot’s business unit Dyno Nobel to invest in a blast technology research programme, which is aimed at improving safety and productivity across its operations in Australia.

The technology improvements are expected to directly benefit mining operations.

BHP will provide input to Dyno Nobel’s research and development under the collaborative research programme, with focus in areas with the greatest potential impact.

OreCorp Tanzania secures regulatory approvals to acquire NMCL

OreCorp Tanzania, a wholly owned subsidiary of OreCorp, received regulatory approval to complete the acquisition of 100% of Nyanzaga Mining Company (NMCL).

Following the approval from the Tanzanian Mining Commission (TMC) and the Fair Competition Commission (FCC), OreCorp Tanzania will now take control of NMCL.

NMCL holds the Nyanzaga Gold Project and has applied for the special mining licence (SML).

Telstra to roll out 4G LTE network for South32 mine

Australian telecommunications company Telstra partnered with South32 to roll out private 4G LTE network at the North West Queensland mine.

Currently, Telstra is pre-deploying the LTE network at the South32 Cannington underground silver, lead and zinc mine.  The technology is expected to drive improved safety and automation at the site and allow staff to directly access vehicles and sensors around the mine at all times.

The system offers high throughput and low latency, thereby allowing the mine staff to control critical equipment without interruption.

Brazil’s IBRAM to implement sustainable mining initiative

Brazil’s mining association Instituto Brasileiro de Mineração (IBRAM) is set to adopt the Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) initiative developed by the Mining Association of Canada (MAC).

The corporate social responsibility programme aims to enhance environmental and social practices in the mining industry.

Besides IBRAM, six other mining associations implemented the TSM initiative, which is recognised internationally as a standard for responsible mining.

MineRP to partner with Karuschain to adopt blockchain platform

Mining software and consultations provider MineRP signed a letter of intent (LoI) to partner with blockchain platform Karuschain.

As part of the signing, MineRP will adopt Karuschain’s blockchain platform creating a path for data immutability and traceability in the mining and precious metals industry.

The proposed partnership aims at creating an opportunity for further transparency, as well as ensuring the secure management and tracking of crucial data throughout the mining and precious metals supply chain.

Sibanye to cut 5,270 jobs as part of Marikana operation restructuring

Sibanye-Stillwater announced plans to start consultations with stakeholders regarding the restructuring of its Marikana operations, associated services, and the planned reduction of 5,270 jobs.

The company’s proposal is said to affect 3,904 employees and 1,366 contractors. Sibanye will proceed with consultations as per the terms of Section 189A under the Labour Relations Act.

Sibanye’s restructuring was aimed at bringing the mine back to profit and ensuring the sustainability of the remaining shafts.