https://www.miningweekly.com
Africa|Aluminium|Coal|Copper|Cutting|Energy|Financial|Mining|Power|PROJECT|Maintenance|Operations
Africa|Aluminium|Coal|Copper|Cutting|Energy|Financial|Mining|Power|PROJECT|Maintenance|Operations
africa|aluminium|coal|copper|cutting|energy|financial|mining|power|project|maintenance|operations

South32 coal production falls sharply

The Illawarra metallurgical coal mine in Australia

The Illawarra metallurgical coal mine in Australia

22nd January 2024

By: Mariaan Webb

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online

     

Font size: - +

Diversified mining company South32 on Monday reported a sharp drop in coal production, with metallurgical coal output slumping by 50% in the December quarter.

The Illawarra mine, in Australia, produced 744 000 t in the three months ended December, compared with 1.48-million tonnes in the comparative quarter.

For the first half of the 2024 financial year, Illawarra’s metallurgical coal production fell by 39% to 1.78-million tonnes, as the operation completed two planned longwall moves, including an extended outage at the Dendrobium mine.

Energy coal production fell by 47% in the December quarter to 133 000 t, while half-year energy output was 55% down to 258 000 t.

Total half-year coal output came to 2.05-million tonnes and South32 said it still expected Illawarra to produce about five-million tonnes in 2024.

South32’s Australia manganese production also fell by 17% year-on-year in the December quarter to 789 000 t, while half-year production came to 1.68-million tonnes. South African manganese ore production fell by 9% in the December quarter to 483 00 t and half-year production increased to 1.11-million tonnes.

Zinc-equivalent production at Cannington, in Australia, increased by 13% year-on-year to 147 200 t. The December quarter’s production was 10% higher than that of the December 2023 quarter at 70 300 t.

Cerro Matoso, in Chile, reported a 10% year-on-year decrease in half-year production to 20 400 t. The company has started a strategic review of the operation to “evaluate options to enhance its competitive position”.

The Chile-based Sierra Gorda mine’s payable copper-equivalent production reduced by 14% to 38 600 t in the six months. Copper production was 17% lower at 31 600 t, as the higher throughput delivered by the plant debottlenecking project was more than offset by lower planned grades.

South32 has reduced the full-year guidance for the molybdenum production from Sierra Gorda, following an unplanned outage of the molybdenum plant in the December quarter.

South32 has disclosed a downward adjustment of 3% in its full-year production forecast but expressed optimism regarding cost expectations amid a concerted group-wide effort focusing on cost-cutting measures.

“With some of our commodities facing headwinds in the half, we continued to focus on delivering cost efficiencies and expect first-half operating unit costs to be below or in line with guidance for the majority of our operations,” said CEO Graham Kerr.

The miner lowered its group copper-equivalent production guidance to reflect a revised guidance for its Brazil Alumina, Mozal Aluminium and molybdenum output from Sierra Gorda.

At the 36%-owned Brazil Alumina, the full-year guidance has been lowered by 7% to 1.26-million tonnes, owing to third-party power outages and maintenance.

South32’s first-half alumina production was 1% lower at 2.57-million tonnes, with Worsley Alumina, in Australia, producing 1.93-million tonnes and Brazil Alumina producing 640 000 t.

The guidance for Mozal Aluminium, in Mozambique, has been cut by 12% to 345 000 t, as the operation continues to implement a recovery plan following a 2022 fatal accident.

However, despite the Mozal setbacks, South32 delivered a record aluminium result for the first half of the 2024 financial year, helped by its Hillside Aluminium operation, in South Africa.

Group aluminium production was 1% higher at 575 000 t, with Hillside Aluminium, in South Africa, delivering 359 000 t and Mozal producing 166 000 t.  

Further, South32 kept its full-year guidance for its copper, zinc, nickel, metallurgical coal and manganese operations unchanged, despite a drop in production for several of these commodities.

Production for the year would be weighted to the June 2024 half.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

Comments

Showroom

Yale Lifting Solutions
Yale Lifting Solutions

Yale Lifting Solutions is a leading supplier of lifting and material handling equipment in Southern Africa. Yale offers a wide range of quality...

VISIT SHOWROOM 
Weir Minerals Africa and Middle East
Weir Minerals Africa and Middle East

Weir Minerals Europe, Middle East and Africa is a global supplier of excellent minerals solutions, including pumps, valves, hydrocyclones,...

VISIT SHOWROOM 

Latest Multimedia

sponsored by

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
PLUS
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?

MAGAZINE & ONLINE

SUBSCRIBE

RESEARCH CHANNEL AFRICA

SUBSCRIBE

CORPORATE PACKAGES

CLICK FOR A QUOTATION







sq:0.119 0.158s - 95pq - 2rq
1:
1: United States
Subscribe Now
2: United States
2: