Queensland’s Department of Environment and Heritage Protection has issued the final approved amended environmental authority to gold miner Resolute Mining to restart operations at Sarsfield open-pit in Ravenswood Project.
Environmental authority is a milestone in the governmental approval process required to progress the Ravenswood Expansion Project (REP) and includes all provisions needed to start mining at the Sarsfield open-pit.
The REP will extend the company’s local operations by 13 years until 2029. It will also improve average annual gold production to more than 120,000oz.
In December last year, the Queensland Government granted the prescribed project status to the REP.
Resolute Mining managing director and CEO John Welborn said: “The amended environmental approval we have received is a critically important aspect of our plans to expand production and extend the mine-life of our Ravenswood Gold Mine.
“We have already successfully recommenced open-pit mining at the nearby Nolans East pit and have increased processing capacity to 2.8 million tonnes per annum while we continue underground operations at Mt Wright.”
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Welborn added that the extension of Ravenswood operations will help maintain long-term employment to around 280 people and provide around 100 construction jobs.
Last year, Resolute completed a feasibility study for REP that established the 13-year mine-life based on open-pit mining at the Nolans East, Buck Reef West and Sarsfield deposits.
In addition, the company increased its processing capacity to 2.8 million tonnes per annum.
It expects to receive regulatory approvals for open-pit mining of Buck Reef West deposit in mid-2018. Resolute also plans to expand the mill capacity to five million tonnes per annum from the next financial year.