Aim-listed BlueRock Diamonds says its processed ore numbers and average grade achieved have improved during August.
The company, which owns and operates the Kareevlei diamond mine, in South Africa’s Northern Cape province, processed 41 000 t of ore from the main pit at Kareevlei during the month, at a significantly improved average grade of 5.1 carats per hundred tonnes (cpht).
Chairperson Mike Houston says that, as anticipated, BlueRock is operating again in the main pit’s main kimberlite zone with minimal dilution, leading to a higher recovered grade compared with the average grade of 3 cpht achieved in the first half of this year.
The grade now stands well above the company’s targeted 4 cpht.
“The increase in grade has a significant impact on the operations in what remains a challenging environment. Most importantly, it lowers the cost per carat significantly and provides more operational flexibility.
“It should be noted, however, that as diamonds are not a homogenous resource, grades may vary as we mine in different parts of the pit,” Houston explains.
The Kareevlei mine ranks in the top ten globally in terms of average value per carat. The licence area of 3 000 ha hosts five known diamondiferous kimberlite pipes.