Waterberg Coal Company has reported that joint ore reserves committee-compliant thermal coal resources at its joint venture Waterberg coal project in South Africa increased to 3.88 billion tonnes.
Of the total resources, 2.07 billion tonnes are in the measured category with mining rights garnered over 2.05 billion tonnes.
Results followed the completion of a 2013 drilling programme at the project and represented an increase on the resource of 1.18 billion tonnes reported in December 2012.
Waterberg Coal said the doubling of the measured resource to two billion tonnes gives the project technical team the flexibility to optimise the draft SRK bankable feasibility study mine plan, currently set up to supply ten million tonnes of coal product per year to Eskom.
According to the company, optimisation of the mine plan will have a favourable impact on yields, operating costs and annual tonnes mined.
Results cover the properties of four farms, which include Smitspan, Massenberg, Hooikraal and Minnasvlakte, as well as the two farms held under a prospecting permit in Vetleegte and Swanepoelpan.
Coal resources for the four farms held under the mining rights are 3.149 billion tonnes, of which 2.053 billion tonnes are a measured resource, 575.6 million tonnes are indicated and 519.5 million tonnes are inferred.
The coal resource for the two farms held under the prospecting permit is 734 million tonnes, of which 16.4 million tonnes are a measured resource, 280.7 million tonnes are indicated and 437.2 million tonnes are inferred.
As per the plans, the joint venture partners intend to complete additional drilling on the properties to increase the resource base.
The Waterberg joint venture partners have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Eskom to supply ten million tonnes of coal product per year, starting in mid-2015.
Image: Waterberg's project's joint ore reserves increased to 3.88 billion tonnes. Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net.