Cameco’s Kintyre uranium mine wins West Australia approval

8 March 2015 (Last Updated March 8th, 2015 18:30)

West Australia's Environmental Minister Albert Jacob has approved Canadian uranium producer Cameco's Kintyre uranium mine, which is located 80km south of Telfer.

West Australia's Environmental Minister Albert Jacob has approved Canadian uranium producer Cameco's Kintyre uranium mine, which is located 80km south of Telfer.

A joint venture project between Cameco Australia and Mitsubishi Development, the proposed mine project will include an open-cut mine, treatment facilities, an airstrip, as well as an accommodation village.

Prior to Jacob's approval, the mine received conditional approval from the WA Environmental Protection Authority in July 2014.

"We are confident the Kintyre project can be constructed, operated and closed in a way that maintains the ecological functions and environmental values in the area and will ensure all regulatory conditions are met."

Welcoming Jacob's decision, Cameco Australia managing director Brian Reilly told AAP that the decision follows the 'highest and most thorough level of environmental impact assessment and more than four years of extensive community consultation and rigorous environmental and technical studies'.

Reilly said: "We are confident the Kintyre project can be constructed, operated and closed in a way that maintains the ecological functions and environmental values in the area and will ensure all regulatory conditions are met."

The company plans to make a development decision once the market conditions improve.

The Kintyre uranium project is located 260km north-east of Newman at the western edge of the Great Sandy Desert in the East Pilbara region of Western Australia and was acquired in 2008 by the JV between Cameco and Mitsubishi Development.

The project is operated by Cameco Australia, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cameco.

CRA Exploration discovered uranium in the Kintyre area in 1985 and was placed in care and maintenance in 1998 due to depressed uranium prices.