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Environmental News

Miner defends Western Cape phosphate project, highlights its importance

By: Ilan Solomons     19th October 2017 Emerging miner Kropz has warned that the West Coast Environmental Protection Association’s (WCEPA’s) application to have the water-use license (WUL) for Kropz’s Elandsfontein phosphate mine, near Saldanha Bay, in the Western Cape, suspended, would, if successful, cause “irreversible environmental... 

Remove exploration red tape or mining will die, geologist warns 

By: Martin Creamer     19th October 2017 The excessive red tape around minerals exploration must be removed to prevent the demise of South Africa’s vital mining industry, consulting exploration geologist Allan Saad said on Thursday. Saad, who spent 18 years in geological roles with mining major Rio Tinto and who formerly represented the... 

Remove exploration red tape or mining will die, geologist warns
Consulting exploration geologist Allan Saad outlines current exploration constraints to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Photographs: Christo Greyling. Video and Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

‘Digital effectiveness’ tops EY’s 2017/18 risk radar

By: Henry Lazenby     18th October 2017 Professional services firm EY Global has revealed it annual ‘Top 10 business risks facing mining and metals’ report on Tuesday, with new entry ‘digital’ topping the list of most critical risks facing the mining industry in the coming year. This year’s report has seen a reshuffling with digital... 

‘Digital effectiveness’ tops EY’s 2017/18 risk radar

Miners beware growing cyber risk

By: Henry Lazenby     17th October 2017 Cyber risk has increased in prominence on professional services firm EY’s annual ‘Top 10 business risks facing mining and metals’ report, jumping to third position from ninth in 2016. According to EY's report, which was published on Tuesday, cyber risk is an ever-growing issue – an outcome of... 

Miners beware growing cyber risk

Soil sampling, mapping suggest new gold targets

     13th October 2017 A large soil anomaly with a peak value of 0.25 g/t gold has been discovered at the New York target area of ASX-listed Tanga Resources’ Hanang gold project, in Tanzania, following a geochemical sampling and mapping programme. Tanga Resources CEO Matthew Bowles explains that the New York target... 

Hybrid solar systems punted as the way forward for sub-Saharan Africa mines

By: Dylan Slater     13th October 2017 Factors such as limited and unreliable energy transmission and distribution grids, across many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, have created a dependency among large industrial and mining houses on diesel and heavy fuel oil (HFO) to provide a reliable energy supply, says renewable-energy... 

Hybrid solar systems punted  as the way forward for  sub-Saharan Africa mines
DEGRUSSA PLANT The off-grid hybrid power plant at the DeGrussa copper/gold mine, in western Australia features a solar PV plant, lithium-ion battery facility and a diesel power station

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor 

By: Martin Creamer     11th October 2017 South Africans, who have been mining for metals for more than a century, were this week urged to farm for metals. South African-born Stephen Haggerty, a distinguished research professor of Florida International University in the US who spoke to Mining Weekly Online while in Johannesburg, outlined... 

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor
Florida International University distinguished research professor Stephen E Haggerty talks to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer on the potential to farm for metals. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video and Video Editing: Lionel de Silva.

Mining company has eyes on West Coast National Park, say activists

By: News24Wire      9th October 2017 Kropz mining company has told SANParks executive committee members that it may ask to extend its phosphate mine into the West Coast National Park. The company, formerly Elandsfontein Exploration and Mining, has also approached the department of mineral resources (DMR) to "protect our rights" over... 

Northam backs Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association’s awareness campaign

By: Natasha Odendaal     9th October 2017 Platinum miner Northam is supporting a campaign by US-based Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) to raise awareness of clean energy technology. Globally, governments are being urged to support investment in technology to provide cleaner and more efficient sources of power in the... 

Northam backs Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association’s awareness campaign
Photo by Duane Daws
Northam CEO Paul Dunne

Canadian miners commit to new actions in combat against climate change

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd October 2017 The Mining Association of Canada (MAC) has adopted 13 actions under the six policy areas proposed last year by an internal advisory body, that will help its members better fight against climate change. The MAC said on Monday that it has incorporated recommendations levelled by the association’s... 

Appea calls for clarity on Pristine Rivers legislation

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     29th September 2017 The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (Appea) has called on the Queensland government to clarify its position on natural gas development in the Cooper basin, after reports emerged that the government could be considering environmental legislation to protect rivers.... 

America’s ‘most storied mine’ under new management as Bunker Hill aims at restart

By: Henry Lazenby     29th September 2017 One of America’s most famous mines is set to restart operations, after a team of mine developers that have done it before in Idaho’s Silver Valley, recently obtained a lease and option to buy the historic brownfields project. Using a Canadian shell company to advance the acquisition of the... 

America’s ‘most storied mine’ under new management as Bunker Hill aims at restart
Photo by US EPA
The Bunker Hill smelter operating in winter snow in the 1970s

Mining companies must embrace key changes to succeed

     29th September 2017 Mining companies willing to engage in substantive change by rethinking strategy and embracing disruption to help unlock productivity and improve sustainability, will be best positioned to succeed in upcoming years, says advisory firm Deloitte Global mining sector leader Philip Hopwood. 

Mining companies must embrace key changes to succeed
TECHNOLOGICAL REVOLUTION The mining sector is investing in technological innovations, such as driverless trucks, to streamline equipment maintenance and prevent safety incidents

Mining-focused drone data service company gets Ghana licence

By: Dylan Slater     29th September 2017 Drone data service provider Rocketmine has received the first commercial remotely piloted aircraft system operating certificate (ROC) in Ghana.  

No clarity on mine rehab funding drawdown  

     28th September 2017 There is no clarity on the how mining companies can draw down from their financial provision vehicles to undertake mine rehabilitation, Mining Weekly heard during a discussion on the new National Environmental Management Act at the Joburg Indaba breakfast ahead of the event next month. Mining... 

No clarity on mine rehab funding drawdown
No clarity on mine rehab funding drawdown

Guatemala court clarifies consultation area, denies action on export permit

By: Henry Lazenby     27th September 2017 The TSX-listed stock of beleaguered miner Tahoe Resources fell as much as 13.5% on Wednesday, after the Guatemalan Supreme Court issued a ruling clarifying the specific geographical areas that needs to be included in a fresh round of indigenous consultations; the court also denied action to force... 

No clarity on funding drawdown for mine rehab – Joburg Indaba

By: Martin Creamer     27th September 2017 There is no clarity on the way that mining companies can draw down from their financial provision vehicles to undertake mine rehabilitation, the Joburg Indaba Breakfast heard on Wednesday during a discussion on the implications of the new National Environmental Management Act (Nema). Chaired by... 

No clarity on funding drawdown for mine rehab – Joburg Indaba
Photo by Joburg Indaba
Panellists from left to right are Pan African CEO Cobus Loots, MSA MD Ben Burnand, PwC's Dr Ferdi Linde, ENSafrica's Andries Myburgh, DMR's director of mine closure Reuben Masenya and Cenviro Solutions MD Leentie Smit

BC’s NDP-led govt talks up exploration, mining as basis for building burgeoning communities

By: Henry Lazenby     26th September 2017 British Columbia is ‘ground zero’ for mining in Canada, as technological advances require an ever-increasing volume of metals to satisfy improving standards of living and environment-friendly technologies. This was the key message to attendees at the fourth yearly Resource Breakfast Series held... 

BC’s NDP-led govt talks up exploration, mining as basis for building burgeoning communities
Photo by British Columbia Government
BC Minister for Energy, Mines and Petroleum Michelle Mungall was formally sworn in by Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon

Platinum-group metals producer aiming to increase fuel cell demand

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd September 2017 To increase demand in the fuel cell (FC) industry, platinum group metals producer Impala Platinum (Implats) aims to take its Impala Platinum Refinery off the State-owned power utility Eskom grid and power the refinery using FC technology, with commercial operation of its first phase aimed to... 

Platinum-group metals producer aiming to increase fuel cell demand
FAHMIDA SMITH The development of the 8 MW fuel cell is an exciting development in Implats’ move towards a carbon-neutral fuel source at its refinery

Surge in fuel cell demand would aid platinum’s future

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd September 2017 As a means of promoting beneficiation, South African Chamber of Mines (CoM) administration head Jeannette Hofsajer says the platinum-based fuel cell installed at its offices is just the start in a potentially vast surge in demand for fuel cell units, which would positively impact on the platinum... 

Surge in fuel cell demand would aid platinum’s future
FACING RESISTANCE Using fuel cells to replace petrol and diesel power is facing consumer resistance

Technological advances aim to improve sustainability

By: Nica Schreuder     22nd September 2017 Owing to the possible presence of hazardous methane gas during coal mining, it is common practice to monitor methane levels at operational mining sections. As such, mining monitoring systems company Monitech’s Hazardous Area Control System was introduced to coal mining fifteen years ago and it... 

Technological advances aim to improve sustainability
CUSTOMISED PROJECTS Every Exxaro project is customised, owing to possible environmental constraints

Fuel cell opportunity to save platinum mining

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd September 2017 With platinum being one of the most effective and durable catalysts in proton exchange membrane fuel cell technology (PEMFC), fuel cell and electrolyser technology developer Isondo Precious Metals (IPM) CEO Vinay Somera believes that this presents an opportunity for the South African platinum... 

Fuel cell opportunity to save platinum mining
Photo by Duane Daws
VINAY SOMERA The drive to zero emissions also represent the “single biggest opportunity” for the industry

Platinum mining to play role in emerging sector

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd September 2017 With there being a global increase in demand for all fuel cells, with low temperature platinum bearing fuel cells seeing the largest increase in market pull, independent analysis and advisory firm 4th Energy Wave CEO Dr Kerry-Ann Adamson believes that this creates an increasing opportunity for... 

Platinum mining to play role in emerging sector
Photo by SFC
INCREASED ADOPTION Trends and demands for an increasing availability of fuel cells are leading to increased adoption

Deterrence, prevention critical for miners in fight against fraud

By: Henry Lazenby     18th September 2017 Fraud is a significant burden on the mining industry and is likely to cost companies an average of 5.85% of turnover every year. Therefore, catching it before it happens is often the best weapon to combat this scourge. This figure is based on 20 years of data across more than 40 sectors,... 

Deterrence, prevention critical for miners in fight against fraud

Industrial solutions provider aiming to benefit Zambia’s mines

By: Simone Liedtke     15th September 2017 Industrial solutions provider RTS Africa Engineering (RTS) states that air compressors used in the mining industry – including in Zambia – are, for the most part, well-proven, reliable pieces of equipment that can operate for years with relatively little maintenance. 

Industrial solutions provider aiming to benefit Zambia’s mines
EFFECTIVE SUPPLY The use of a spin filter is a truly effective means of feeding clean air at ambient temperatures

Peristaltic pumps key in war on water wastage

     15th September 2017 Peristaltic pumps use less water, with traditional centrifugal pumps losing efficiency when the slurry has a specific gravity (SG) of 1.3, or 30% solids, or more. Peristaltic pumps can efficiently circulate slurry with SGs of up to 1.6 to 1.8, or up to 80% solid content.  Pumps supplier Verder... 

Peristaltic pumps key in war on water wastage
SAVE ON WATER On a plant processing slurry at 75 t/h with 65% solids, every time a peristaltic pump replaces a process slurry pump, more than 1 100-million litres of water is saved every year

Peristaltic pumps operating at Zambian mines

By: Simone Liedtke     15th September 2017 Randburg-based industrial equipment supplier Verder Pumps’ Verderflex (VF) 125 peristaltic pump is in operation at mining company Kansanshi Mining’s Zambia-based Kansanshi copper mine and is undergoing testing at two other Zambian mines, as well as mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.... 

Peristaltic pumps operating at Zambian mines
VERDERFLEX 125 The peristaltic pump is in operation at the Kansanshi copper mine

Second Copper Cobalt Africa Conference to be held next year

     15th September 2017 Educational institution Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM) will host the second Copper Cobalt Africa Conference at the Avani Victoria Falls Resort, in Livingstone, Zambia, in July next year. 

Second Copper Cobalt Africa Conference to  be held next year
Photo by Bloomberg
INDUSTRY REVIVAL The African Copperbelt is again experiencing a resurgence of activity following the commodity downturn of recent years

Call to mining to update refrigerant systems

     15th September 2017 While the majority of the mining industry use hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in its refrigerant systems, these ozone-depleting substances are set to be phased-out in accordance with the Montreal Protocol and Kigali Agreement. 

Canadian-listed junior plans further drilling to increase Guinea project resource base 

By: Mia Breytenbach     15th September 2017 TSX-V-listed Volcanic Gold Mines plans to drill within the significantly expanded mineralized footprint defined by air-core drilling adjacent to the inferred mineral resource at its Mandiana gold project, with a view to a resource increase and is actively orientating its exploration programme... 

Canadian-listed junior plans further drilling to increase  Guinea project resource base
Volcanic Gold Mines president Jeremy Crozier discusses the progress at the Mandiana gold project in Guinea. Video and Editing: Lionel da Silva.

Regulatory overhaul expected to improve water use licensing turnaround

By: Ilan Solomons     15th September 2017 Analysts are hopeful that recent regulations promulgated by the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) will assist in overcoming the long delays in securing water use licence authorisations (WULAs) and allow more streamlined implementation of projects. WULAs are required by a range of water... 

Regulatory overhaul expected to improve water use licensing turnaround
Photo by Duane Daws
ENCOURAGING DEVELOPMENTS The new regulations are a positive step that aligns the timelines for WULAs with the application for an environmental authorisation

Systems water intensive, but more efficient and environment friendly 

By: Victor Moolman     15th September 2017 Although ultrahigh-pressure water blasting systems used to clean refineries or cut rock and prepare surfaces on mines will not save water, it is more efficient than using acid washing or abrasive grit blasting techniques, says water jetting solutions provider Total Blasting sales director Bradley... 

Systems water intensive, but more efficient and environment friendly
Total Blasting sales director Bradley Storer explains what ultrahigh-pressure water blasting systems are used for. Video: Victor Moolman. Editing: Lionel da Silva.

Mining industry urged to do more to prevent further fatalities in 2017

By: Ilan Solomons     15th September 2017 The recent spike in fatalities at South African mines, with the most recent occurring at Harmony Gold’s Kusasalethu mine, near Carletonville, should serve as a timely reminder to the mining industry that a significant step change in health and safety practices is needed to ensure the goal of zero... 

Mining industry urged to do more to prevent further fatalities in 2017
Photo by Creamer Media image
MTHOKOZISI ZONDI Despite the decrease in fatalities and injuries at mines in recent years, a lot more needs to be done to ensure the ending of injuries and fatalities at mines

Greece issues Olympias operating, tailings installation permits to Eldorado

By: Henry Lazenby     13th September 2017 Canadian gold producer Eldorado Gold confirmed on Wednesday that it has received the Olympias operating permit and the modified electromechanical installation permit for the tailings management facility at Kokkinolakkas, from the Greek Ministry of Energy and Environment. The permits were issued... 

Greece issues Olympias operating, tailings installation permits to Eldorado
The Olympias project

Demand for quality metals amplifying 

     13th September 2017 Global climate change mitigation is amplifying the demand for good-quality, low-impurity metals, but South Africa’s mining industry needs to be more globally competitive to take advantage of this trend. Mining Weekly editor Martin Creamer joins senior deputy editor Tracy Hancock in studio to... 

Demand for quality metals amplifying
Demand for quality metals amplifying

Tailings-savvy DRDGold inviting collaboration, consolidation 

By: Martin Creamer     12th September 2017 Surface gold mining company DRDGold, the oldest company listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange with more experience than any other mining company in the recovery of gold from tailings dumps, believes that the time may have arrived for the transplanting of its remarkable expertise to other... 

Tailings-savvy DRDGold inviting collaboration, consolidation
DRDGold CEO Niël Pretorius tells Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer that the time for tailings collaboration has never been more opportune. Video and Video Editing: Darlene Creamer.

Centerra, Kyrgyzstan resolve long-standing legal standoff

By: Henry Lazenby     11th September 2017 Canadian gold producer Centerra Gold and the Kyrgyzstan government have reached a wide-ranging settlement agreement that resolves a years-long legal standoff, the company announced on Monday. The agreement, first rumoured by the media on Thursday, pushed Centerra’s Toronto-listed stock up 4.2%... 

Centerra, Kyrgyzstan resolve long-standing legal standoff
Photo by Centerra Gold
Centerra Gold's Kumtor mine, Kyrgyz Republic

US braces for Hurricane Irma as effects of Harvey still progress toward consumers

By: Henry Lazenby     9th September 2017 While the effects of Hurricane Harvey are still progressing downstream in the US oil and gas supply chain, progressing towards consumers, Hurricane Irma is threatening the US with another potential blow, with parts of the country already seeing a disruption of energy and chemical product... 

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