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Health News

Two miners die at Golden Star’s Prestea mine, Ghana

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd January 2018 The TSX-listed equity of Africa-focused miner Golden Star Resources shed as much as 10% on Tuesday, following a company announcement that two miners have died on December 29 at its Prestea Underground mine, in Ghana. The Toronto-headquartered company, which also has listings on the Ghana Stock... 

Northern Dynasty ready to file application for Pebble’s US CWA 404 permit

By: Henry Lazenby     21st December 2017 Canadian project promoter Northern Dynasty Minerals announced on Thursday that its US-based subsidiary Pebble Limited Partnership (PLP) is ready to file an application for a US Clean Water Act (CWA) 404 permit with the US Army Corps of Engineers on Friday. “At the outset of 2017, we established... 

Northern Dynasty ready to file application for Pebble’s US CWA 404 permit

Philippines miners adopt Canadian mining sustainability principles

By: Henry Lazenby     20th December 2017 The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) has announced that it will adopt a mining sustainability standard developed by the Mining Association of Canada, called the Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) initiative. The announcement made the Philippines the first Southeast Asian nation to adopt... 

Small- and medium-scale operations punted as ‘the future’ of mining

By: Mia Breytenbach     15th December 2017 With industrial mining on the decline, smaller- to medium-scale mining operations are the future, according to Bench Marks Foundation South Africa lead researcher David van Wyk. Addressing delegates at the Science Business Society Dialogue Conference on Linking Science, Society, Business and... 

Small- and medium-scale operations punted as  ‘the future’ of mining
CLUSTERED AND FORMALISED Small operations could be clustered together geographically and assigned an engineer, a geologist and a health and safety officer to ensure safe operations

State of local mining regulations shun investment, says CoM report 

By: Dylan Slater     14th December 2017 The findings of a recently conducted Chamber of Mines (CoM) survey indicate that if South Africa’s mining industry shifts its focus to create an attractive policy, regulatory and governance environment – through ethical leadership, good governance and the adoption of competitive, stable and... 

Silicosis: we’re close to a deal with the mines, says miners’ attorney

By: News24Wire      12th December 2017 A settlement between thousands of sick gold miners and the mining industry is possible before the end of the year, according to one of the attorneys for the sick mineworkers. More than 100 000 mineworkers and former mineworkers, and their dependants, are claiming damages for contracting silicosis... 

Trade union wins temporary random drug testing victory against Suncor

By: Henry Lazenby     11th December 2017 Unionised workers at Suncor’s Wood Buffalo operations, in northern Alberta, won an important victory last week regarding random drug testing by their employer, Suncor Energy. The Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta issued an injunction on Suncor on Thursday, prohibiting the employer from randomly... 

Trade union wins temporary random drug testing victory against Suncor

Crucial for commodity countries to build economic resilience – Unctad 

By: Martin Creamer     11th December 2017 Without policy change, commodity-dependent developing countries risk falling short of achieving their sustainable development goals (SDGs) by 2030, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) economic affairs officer Stefan Csordas warned on Monday. Unctad and the Food and... 

Crucial for commodity countries to build economic resilience – Unctad
Unctad’s Stefan Csordas discusses commodities report with Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Lionel de Silva.

Mine fatalities in South Africa rise first time in decade 

By: Bloomberg     8th December 2017 For the first time in almost a decade, more people are dying in South African mines, the world’s deepest and among the most dangerous. There were 81 fatalities from January through November, according to data from the Chamber of Mines, an industry lobby group. Harmony Gold Mining Co. reported a... 

Mine fatalities in South Africa rise first time in decade

Continued focus on downstream development

By: Donald Makhafola     8th December 2017 The stage is set for the expansion of copper mining activities across the Copperbelt to take advantage of the 20-million tonnes of unmined copper in the region, nonprofit organisation Copper Development Association Africa (CDAA) director Levine Warries tells Mining Weekly.   

Continued focus on  downstream development
PROMOTING BENEFICICIATION The Copper Development Association Africa seeks to increase itsmembership to fund research and development initiatives into the beneficiation of copper such as antimicrobial copper surfaces in healthcare facilities

SA firm takes first steps into US market with new blasting technology

By: Mia Breytenbach     8th December 2017 With growth for the Axxis blasting technology having increased substantially each year over the past five years, Africa-based blasting and explosives leader BME has, in enhancing the brand’s growth, taken its first steps into the US market. The company conducted six successful test blasts in... 

SA firm takes first steps into US market with new blasting technology
TESTED TRUE BME’s Axxis digital initiation system, BlastMap III software and electronic detonators were used in six successful test blasts in Atlanta, in the US

South Africa urged to go back to basics to avoid mining’s demise

By: Mia Breytenbach     8th December 2017 For South Africa's mining industry to return to more successful times, the country will need to go back to basics, says Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood, who also suggests that these basics could aid in sidestepping the demise of the mining industry in South Africa. These... 

South Africa urged to go back to basics to avoid mining’s demise
PROFESSOR FRED CAWOOD South Africa should embrace mining

Mining will only ‘move forward’ if there is a change of guard at Mineral Resources – lawyer

By: Mia Breytenbach     8th December 2017 The mining industry cannot move forward until new leadership is established within the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR), says law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr (CDH) mining head Allan Reid, who suggests that such a change could re-establish “some degree of optimism and trust in the mining... 

Mining will only ‘move forward’ if there is a change of guard  at Mineral Resources – lawyer
NEW HORIZONS South African mining companies are exploring other African jurisdictions for mining investment

Miner dies at Harmony's Tshepong mine

By: Samantha Herbst     7th December 2017 Gold mining major Harmony Gold confirmed on Thursday that one of its employees was fatally injured in a fall-of-ground incident at its Tshepong mine, near Welkom, in the Free State on Tuesday afternoon. According to the miner, challenging conditions continue to impact the recovery of the deceased. 

SA government takes healthcare services to Kuruman mineworkers

By: African News Agency      6th December 2017 Mineworkers in the manganese-rich town of Kuruman, in the Northern Cape, are set to benefit from integrated healthcare and social services after government partnered with the mining industry and workers associations to launch a centre on Tuesday. The One Stop Health Service Centre is aimed at... 

Banro defers December interest payment

By: Henry Lazenby     2nd December 2017 Democratic Republic of Congo- (DRC-) focused miner Banro Corp has decided to defer an interest payment of $4.94-million that was due on Friday for up to 30 days. Under the terms of the indenture governing the 10% notes due 2021, no event of default will occur if the interest payment is made... 

Chairlift system to augment safety at Orkney mine

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st December 2017 A 180-m-long, footwall-mounted chairlift system will be installed at gold miner Tau Lekoa Gold Mining Company’s mine near Orkney, in the North West, in January to assist the mine with daily operations and enhance its safety. Energy distribution, automation, communication, transportation and roof... 

Chairlift system to augment safety at Orkney mine
ELEVATING SAFETY Becker’s chairlift systems, with modular, low-maintenance attributes, are designed to transport up to 900 personnel per hour in a quick, efficient and safe manner

Policy certainty needed to drive oil and gas in South Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     1st December 2017 The large-scale production of oil and gas has the potential to stabilise South Africa’s economy, relieving unemployment and poverty challenges while driving growth across industries, but government must provide policy certainty and an assertion of future contract stability, says South African Oil... 

Policy certainty needed to drive oil and gas in South Africa
Photo by Bloomberg
IMPORT NEED South Africa must prioritise the import of liquefied natural gas to establish a gas market while indigenous reserves are explored onshore and offshore

Aiming to improve emergency preparedness

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st December 2017 Mpumalanga-based artisan and mining skills training centre Colliery Training College (CTC) is actively seeking more coal projects to contract the services of its Rescue Drill Unit (RDU) to improve the effectiveness of mines’ emergency preparedness procedures. “We encourage mines to contract us to... 

Aiming to improve  emergency preparedness
SAFETY UNIT The Rescue Drill Unit is used for assistance and/or rescue after a mine accident caused by a fire, roof collapse or explosion

Alcohol abuse long-standing issue, drug abuse growing

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st December 2017 Growing drug and alcohol abuse at mines in South Africa is especially prevalent in newer mining areas, such as the North West, where living arrangements of the general workforce foster such behaviour, drug and alcohol testing equipment and accessories company Alco-Safe director Rhys Evans informs... 

Alcohol abuse long-standing issue, drug abuse growing
SUBSTANTIAL PROBLEM Substance abuse is not only prevalent in the general mining workforce; alcohol abuse is also common among management who prefer more expensive drugs, such as cocaine

Illegal miners posing danger to residents – City of Joburg

By: Nadine James     1st December 2017 The ever-increasing trend of illegal miners using explosives near public infrastructure has seriously compromised the safety of residents and businesses, said City of Johannesburg communications specialist Virgil James. He explained that the City is concerned about the impending threat posed by... 

Dassault Systèmes heralding in new autonomous mining era  

By: Martin Creamer     30th November 2017 The 'mine of tomorrow' is expected to be a factory-like entity equipped with a multiplicity of autonomous devices, which are controlled by technology savvy personnel working from remote centres, attendees of the natural resources forum heard in Sandton on Thursday. The ‘mine of tomorrow’ would... 

Dassault Systèmes heralding in new autonomous mining era
Dassault Systèmes Geovia CEO Raoul Jacquand interviewed by Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer on mine modernisation. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video and Video Editing: Darlene Creamer.

Small-scale mining has big future but requires formalisation, planning

By: Mia Breytenbach     29th November 2017 With industrial mining on the decline, smaller- to medium-scale mining operations are the future, according to Bench Marks Foundation South Africa lead researcher David van Wyk. Addressing delegates at the Science Business Society Dialogue Conference on Linking Science, Society, Business and... 

Small-scale mining has big future but requires formalisation, planning

Ventilation and cooling in mines often work against nature

By: Simone Liedtke     24th November 2017 Mining requires a robust constitution as mines often work against nature, descending deep underground, where temperatures can rise to between 60º and 70º at the rock face, explains heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) company Johnson Controls GM Neil Cameron. 

Ventilation and cooling in mines often work against nature
YD CENTRIFUGAL CHILLER The chiller ranges in capacity from 5 300 kW to 21 100 kW

Increasing demand for variable-speed drives

By: Simone Liedtke     24th November 2017 Following the successful commissioning of two MoviDrive B ventilation and air conditioning variable-speed drives (VSDs) at an underground mine in the North-West, in South Africa, drive engineering specialist SEW-Eurodrive South Africa will commission an additional four of its MoviDrive B drives... 

Increasing demand for variable-speed drives
DISTINGUISHED DRIVE The purpose-built LTP-B Eco HVAC drive can be set for different parameters such as fan or pump control

Lower-than-guidance 2018 output expected at South Deep

By: Dylan Slater     24th November 2017 The production target for Westonaria-based South Deep gold mine, in Gauteng, is expected to be marginally lower next year than that initially laid out in the miner’s rebase plan, owing to a challenging first quarter this year, notes Gold Fields CEO Nick Holland.  

Canadian federal agency rejects NGO complaint regarding KSM project permitting process

By: Henry Lazenby     21st November 2017 A Canadian federal agency has rejected a request for review (RfR) by nongovernmental organisation (NGO) the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council (SEACC) of the permitting process regarding Seabridge Gold’s Kerr-Sulphurets-Mitchell (KSM) project, in British Columbia. The Canadian National Contact... 

Union urges Canadian government to stand up for Mexican mineworkers’ rights

By: Anine Kilian     21st November 2017 The murders of two striking mineworkers at a Canadian-owned mine in Mexico last week underscores the widespread repression of basic labour rights in Mexico – even when the employer is Canadian, according to the trade union United Steelworkers (USW). The USW was referring to an armed group who, on... 

Zambian mining sector edging closer to ‘zero harm’

By: Nadine James     17th November 2017 The atmosphere at the Zambian mining industry’s third annual Health and Safety Conference, held in Ndola on November 2 and 3, was particularly positive as, at the time, the industry was firmly on course for a fatality-free year, the Zambia Chamber of Mines (ZCM) reports. This was significant, as... 

Zambian mining sector edging closer to ‘zero harm’
KANSANSHI MINE A woman truck driver from Kansanshi mine sustained fatal injuries when the heavy-duty truck she was driving collided with another truck in the sole fatality in Zambia’s mining industry so far, this year

Lily mine remains in limbo, parties need to get together – Solidarity

By: Natasha Odendaal     15th November 2017 As the future of the distressed Lily mine hangs in the balance, trade union Solidarity has called on all parties to expedite the processes under way and make a decision on the mine’s future. With every potential transaction thus far having failing to rescue the idled operation over the past 18... 

Digitalised in-house communications to benefit African mines

By: Robyn Wilkinson     10th November 2017 Mining companies operating in Africa need to think innovatively about how to reach their workforces and consider different access and communication models to ensure healthy and effective employee relations that can significantly improve their bottom lines, says communications provider Wyzetalk... 

Digitalised in-house communications to benefit African mines
GYSBERT KAPPERS There is a strong focus on employees, communities and investing in technology that contributes towards empowerment, inclusivity and sustainability in mining operations

Tailored equipment advances mine safety in Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     10th November 2017 With a growing global health and safety culture developing, large mining companies are driving new safety standards in African mines, creating opportunities for mine safety equipment producer DEZEGA to extend the reach of its fit-for-purpose, self-contained self-rescue (SCSR) equipment on the... 

Tailored equipment advances mine safety in Africa
MODIFIED FOR MARKET Dezega is confident that demand in Africa for its SCSR products – which have undergone some key improvements over the past year – will continue to grow

Equipment maintenance, repair products showcased

By: Dylan Slater     10th November 2017 Adhesives technology company Henkel South Africa hosted its first conference – Repair and Protect Your Mine with Loctite Conference and Exhibition – to showcase ways in which its products could be used in the mining industry to maintain, repair, protect and prolong the life span of equipment.  

Govt, NGOs and industry joining forces to fend off acid mine water threat

By: Ilan Solomons     10th November 2017 Acid mine drainage (AMD) is regarded as one of the greatest environmental challenges ever faced by South Africa, says Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) mine water management chief director Marius Keet. During a recent seminar on the need to rehabilitate mine contaminated ecosystems, he... 

Govt, NGOs and industry joining forces to fend off acid mine water threat

Call for better understanding of trackless mobile mining equipment regulations

By: Ilan Solomons     10th November 2017 Mechanisation of the South African mining sector is a major priority for all stakeholders. However, with the introduction of mechanised mining technologies come several new challenges, one of which relates to the brakes and in-service brake testing of trackless mobile mining (TMM) equipment, says... 

Call for better understanding of trackless mobile mining equipment regulations
Photo by Creamer Media image
DANIE BURGER There are currently a number of problems relating to the standards for the testing of brakes and in-service brake testing of trackless mobile mining equipment

Colliery supply success guides safety solutions provider’s African expansion

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th November 2017 Leveraging its success after 15 years of working with the Botswana-based Morupule colliery, South African mining safety and monitoring solutions provider Monitech is considering further expansion into Africa. Benoni-based Monitech supplied both eight-channel controller systems and Laser Guard... 

Colliery supply success guides safety solutions provider’s African expansion
Photo by Bloomberg
FACILITATING SAFETY The eight-channel controller and the Laser Guard system have aided in meeting underground coal mining safety regulations in Botswana

AEL Mining Services launches rock-breaking technology chair at University of Pretoria

By: Mia Breytenbach     10th November 2017 Johannesburg-headquartered developer, producer and supplier of commercial explosives AEL Mining Services has, in partnership with the University of Pretoria (UP), launched the AEL Mining Services Chair in Innovative Rock Breaking Technology, which will reside within the Department of Mining... 

AEL Mining Services launches rock-breaking technology  chair at University of Pretoria
CHAIRED PROJECT The first project from AEL Mining Services Chair in Innovative Rock Breaking Technology will be to determine safe blast-clearance radii for blasting

Chamber condemns mines’ deteriorating safety performance

By: Natasha Odendaal     6th November 2017 The Chamber of Mines (CoM) on Monday expressed concern over the rising number of fatalities in South Africa’s mines after recent accidents brought the number of fatalities to date this year to 76, overtaking the 73 deaths reported for the same period in 2016. Over the last few weeks, several... 

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