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Environmental News

Forrest paves the way for green steel

By: Esmarie Iannucci     22nd January 2021 Mining magnate Andrew Forrest has pledged iron-ore major Fortescue to a green energy future, unveiling plans for green steelmaking in the Pilbara. In the first ABC Boyer Lecture for 2021, which will be aired over the weekend, Forrest in a recorded message stated that Fortescue would build... 

Lake Wells EPA issues cleared

By: Esmarie Iannucci     22nd January 2021 The Western Australian Minister for Environment has resolved an appeal against the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA’s) approval of ASX-listed Australian Potash’s Lake Wells sulphate of potash (SoP) project. Australian Potash told shareholders on Friday that the Minister was satisfied... 

Family men or forest destroyers? Meet the miners living off the Amazon's gold

By: Reuters     21st January 2021 One man working deep in Brazil's Amazon said he knows how to stop the illegal logging, gold mining, deforestation and fires plaguing the region: let President Jair Bolsonaro carry out his plans to develop the rainforest. "If people listen to him and believe in his ideas ... many of the... 

Platinum group metals demand set to overwhelm supply balance – Davis 

By: Martin Creamer     21st January 2021 Long-serving precious metals consultant Dr David Davis has reached the conclusion, after a comprehensive study, that the demand for platinum group metals (PGMs) is poised to outstrip stagnant supply. Davis, who has spent several months carrying out a ‘deep dive’ into the future of PGMs for... 

Platinum group metals demand set to overwhelm supply balance – Davis
Precious metals consultant Dr David Davis, who believes that platinum will be next to board the price rocket.

Elandsfontein water use licence hearing postponed again

By: Donna Slater     20th January 2021 The hearing into Aim-listed phosphate explorer and developer Kropz’s Elandsfontein project’s integrated water-use licence (WUL) has been rescheduled for February 1. Kropz notes that the Water Tribunal will be resumed in February following a number of postponements since March 2020 owing to... 

New Century's rehab costs decline

By: Esmarie Iannucci     20th January 2021 The Queensland Department of Environment and Science has agreed to a A$14.1-million reduction of the estimated rehabilitation cost (ERC) for the New Century zinc mine. ASX-listed New Century Resources on Wednesday told shareholders that the ERC has now been reduced to A$183.9-million, following... 

Raising distributed-generation licensing threshold to 50 MW would unlock at least 5 000 MW in five years, survey shows 

By: Terence Creamer     20th January 2021 Lifting the licensing threshold for distributed-generation projects to 50 MW or higher could unlock an estimated 5 000 MW of additional capacity in five years and go a long way to rapidly easing South Africa’s debilitating power supply constraints. This is the conclusion of a Meridian Economics... 

Raising distributed-generation licensing threshold to 50 MW would unlock at least 5 000 MW in five years, survey shows

Vedanta agrees to settlement with Zambian villagers over pollution claims

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th January 2021 UK-based law firm Leigh Day has confirmed in a statement that global diversified miner Vedanta Resources has agreed to pay a settlement for all claims brought against it by Zambian claimants related to alleged pollution around the Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) operations. Without admission of... 

Midas Gold to start Stibnite cleanup, plans Nasdaq listing

By: Donna Slater     18th January 2021 TSX-listed Midas Gold reports that, after three years of extensive discussions, federal agencies have authorised and directed it to perform immediate clean up actions in the Stibnite mining district, addressing legacy contamination issues that are impacting on water quality. The administrative... 

Coal price expected to average $100/t as China turns to South Africa for coal 

By: Martin Creamer     15th January 2021 China is buying South African coal at a time when analysts are forecasting a buoyant average coal price of $100/t for the first half (H1) of 2021. The purchase of South African coal by China follows Chinese relations with Australia deteriorating last year and imports of coal from Australia being... 

Coal price expected to average $100/t as China turns to South Africa for coal
Richards Bay Coal Terminal, from which South African coal is exported.

BHP puts up wind fence in WA

By: Esmarie Iannucci     15th January 2021 Mining major BHP plans to construct a wind fence at Finucane Island, as part of its Pilbara Air Quality Program. The fence would be the first of its kind in Australia, and would be designed for the Pilbara’s unique weather conditions, said BHP Port GM Nilson Davila. “We recognise we have a... 

More sales of South African coal to China expected as prices rise

By: Martin Creamer     14th January 2021 About 600 000 t to 700 000 t of South African coal have already moved to China since the Asian giant ceased accepting coal from Australia and more South African coal sales to China are expected “for sure”, a top trader said in an interview with Mining Weekly. China’s power plants have been... 

More sales of South African coal to China expected as prices rise
Richards Bay Coal Terminal, South Africa's world-class coal export port.

China buying South African coal ‘could be game-changer but we shouldn’t be complacent’ 

By: Martin Creamer     13th January 2021 Normally, China does not import coal from South Africa, but 2021 has seen a shift. Shipments to mainland China were reported on Monday by the African Source Markets’ Weekly Coal Index Report. 

China buying South African coal ‘could be game-changer but we shouldn’t be complacent’
Richards Bay Coal Terminal, the port from which South African coal is exported

Native Americans sue Trump administration over Arizona copper project

By: Reuters     13th January 2021 Members of the San Carlos Apache tribe in Arizona on Tuesday said they have sued the Trump Administration to block a pending land swap that would give Rio Tinto the land it needs to build its Resolution Copper project. Apache Stronghold, a non-profit organisation that filed the lawsuit in the US... 

Native Americans sue Trump administration over Arizona copper project

The essential role of platinum group metals in ‘greening’ the world needs highlighting 

By: Martin Creamer     12th January 2021 The ‘greenness’ that South Africa can help bestow on the world needs hard sell now, Mining Weekly can today report. While South Africa’s amazing platinum group metals (PGMs) continue their decades-long task of cleaning the air of the world’s cities in the autocatalytic convertors of vehicle... 

The essential role of platinum group metals in ‘greening’ the world needs highlighting
Photo by Hyundai Truck & Bus
'Green' hydrogen and fuel cells named by Lux Research as two of top-five energy technologies.

New ‘green’ platinum project leaps out of starting blocks, will use 82% less electricity  

By: Martin Creamer     11th January 2021 The innovative new platinum group metals mining and processing project that slashes 82% off electricity use and elevates platinum to a new high level of greenness, leapt out of its starting blocks in North West province on Monday. “We’ve commenced. The tanks are rolling,” Pallinghurst managing... 

New ‘green’ platinum project leaps out of starting blocks, will use 82% less electricity
Pallinghurst managing partner and co-founder Arne Frandsen is interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Teck, First Nation ink agreement to conserve 7 000 ha of land

By: Simone Liedtke     8th January 2021 The Ktunaxa Nation and TSX-listed Teck Resources have signed a joint management agreement for the conservation of more than 7 000 ha of land bought by Teck in 2013. The lands are part of Teck’s steelmaking coal operations in southeast British Columbia. 

Earth’s margin for error narrows after another year of record heat

By: Bloomberg     8th January 2021 Another year of record-high heat punctuated a decade-long increase in global temperatures that has placed the Earth’s economies dangerously close to climate tipping points. Those are the conclusions published Friday by European Union scientists. Despite pandemic-induced lockdowns of the global... 

US company planning at least 500 hydrogen fuelling stations in next 3 to 5 years  

By: Martin Creamer     7th January 2021 The creation of a minimum of 500 fuelling stations to provide hydrogen to mainly trucks powered by platinum-catalysed hydrogen fuel cells is planned by a US company in the next three to five years. “We believe that everyone will be within a couple of miles of a hydrogen fuelling station in the... 

US company planning at least 500 hydrogen fuelling stations in next 3 to 5 years
Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly interviews RAGHU KILAMBI, the CEO of PowerTap, a company that provides crucial hydrogen fuelling infrastructure for fuel cell electric vehicles.

Brazil state eyes at least $5.3bn Vale deal after dam burst, official says

By: Reuters     7th January 2021 The Brazilian state of Minas Gerais is hoping to win at least 28-billion reais ($5.3-billion) from a compensation deal with miner Vale after the 2019 Brumadinho deadly dam burst, a senior state official said on Wednesday. State and Vale officials will meet on Thursday, when it is expected talks... 

Brazil state eyes at least $5.3bn Vale deal after dam burst, official says

Cornish Lithium awarded lithium exploration right off Cornwall coast

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th January 2021 The Crown Estate has announced the outcome of its Minerals Licensing Round, granting Cornish Lithium rights to explore for lithium within geothermal waters in areas off both the north and south coasts of Cornwall, England. The Crown Estate manages the seabed and much of the foreshore around... 

Net-zero emissions commitments hold benefits, but also downsides, for miners 

By: Simone Liedtke     6th January 2021 Miners are targeting massive carbon reductions over the next 10 to 15 years on the path to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, with equity research company Jefferies warning that this implies higher costs and capital expenditure (capex), but also a trend of less supply, higher commodity prices,... 

Nouveau Monde expects govt authorisation for Québec project in first quarter

By: Simone Liedtke     5th January 2021 TSX-V-listed Nouveau Monde Graphite expects to obtain governmental authorisation for its Matawinie graphite project, in Québec, early in the first quarter of this year, thereby enabling the construction of its commercial facilities. The company also expects to complete the construction and... 

Polluters make some net-zero progress, climate action 100+ says

By: Bloomberg     17th December 2020 Three years after some of the world’s biggest investors joined forces to pressure the largest producers of greenhouse gases to cut emissions, about half of them have made net-zero commitments. Climate Action 100+, an investor group with 545 members managing a combined $52 trillion of assets, said... 

Rio strikes carbon deals

By: Esmarie Iannucci     16th December 2020 Diversified miner Rio Tinto has pledged $10-million to research low carbon steel making projects in China, while also inking a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for a similar investment in Japan. The miner on Wednesday said that it has committed to invest $10-million with China Baowu Steel... 

Australian miners need to do more on emissions - report

By: Esmarie Iannucci     16th December 2020 Australia’s resources companies would need to do more in order to address downstream scope 3 emissions, despite making progress on moving their operations towards net zero by 2050, a new report has found. The report by Climateworks Australia and Monash University investigates the climate... 

Australian miners need to do more on emissions - report

Mining and Metals Blockchain Initiative launches proof of concept platform to trace emissions

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th December 2020 The World Economic Forum’s (WEF's) Mining and Metals Blockchain Initiative (MMBI) has released a proof of concept that uses distributed ledger technology to track embedded greenhouse-gas emissions. The successful completion of the proof of concept, named the Carbon Tracing (COT) Platform will be... 

Glencore enters partnership with Tre-Altamira to expand satellite monitoring across its TSFs

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th December 2020 Diversified miner Glencore has entered into an agreement with commercial services provider Tre-Altamira to expand satellite monitoring to more than 110 of its tailings dams worldwide, which Glencore says is the largest industry monitoring agreement to date specifically focusing on tailings... 

Gratton appointed to impact assessment advisory council

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th December 2020 Mining Association of Canada president and CEO Pierre Gratton has been appointed to Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson’s advisory council on impact assessment. The 13-member council would advise the Minister on whether the new impact assessment regime, which came into... 

Gratton appointed to impact assessment advisory council
MAC president and CEO Pierre Gratton

Harmony maintains CDP A-rating for water management

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th December 2020 Gold miner Harmony Gold Mining has maintained its CDP A-rating for water management. The CDP is an international nonprofit organisation based in the UK, Germany and the US and helps companies and cities disclose their environmental impact. 

Trudeau hikes carbon tax, positions Canada to hit climate goal

By: Bloomberg     13th December 2020 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stepped up efforts to hit Canada’s emissions targets by 2030, pledging billions in new money to combat climate change and increasing in his marquee carbon tax. The measures, announced Friday in Ottawa by Trudeau and Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, seek to... 

Trudeau hikes carbon tax, positions Canada to hit climate goal
Justin Trudeau and Jonathan Wilkinson

60Moz Sedibelo platinum expansion, construction of Kell beneficiation plant 

By: Martin Creamer     11th December 2020 Platinum group metals (PGMs) producer Sedibelo Platinum Mines Limited has announced the expansion of operations at Pilanesberg Platinum Mines into contiguous deposits of Sedibelo Central, Magazynskraal and Kruidfontein – known as the Triple Crown properties – with an estimated resource base in... 

60Moz Sedibelo platinum expansion, construction of Kell beneficiation plant
Photo by creamer media
Sedibelo's Pilanesberg Platinum Mines opertional area.

Steps South Africa needs to take to attract global exploration investment 

By: Martin Creamer     10th December 2020 Countries wanting to attract exploration investment need readily available geophysics data to offer to prospective investors. “Geophysics is now key to the exploration industry, particularly for metalliferous-type deposits, which have the largest value,” Exploration Geological Consultancy MD... 

Steps South Africa needs to take to attract global exploration investment
Photo by Creamer Media
Exploration Geological Consultancy MD Regina Molloy

Miners respond to Juukan Gorge report

By: Esmarie Iannucci     10th December 2020 Diversified major Rio Tinto on Thursday said that it was committed to learning from the incident at the Juukan Gorge rockshelters earlier this year, in order to ensure that such an event did not take place again. Responding to the Joint Standing Committee on Northern Australia’s interim report... 

Investment approval for platinum mine’s solar project expected early next year 

By: Martin Creamer     9th December 2020 Investment approval for the solar project at the Mogalakwena platinum group metals mine in Limpopo is expected in the first quarter of next year. “We are making progress with the environmental scoping study and the environmental impact assessment will commence following investment approval,”... 

Investment approval for platinum mine’s solar project expected early next year
Water dam at Anglo American Platinum's Mogalakwena mine.

Newmont to spend $500m over 5 years on climate initiatives

By: Reuters     9th December 2020 Top gold producer Newmont on Tuesday said it would spend $500-million over five years to meet climate change targets as the miner accelerates efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at its operations. Investors are putting pressure on gold miners, whose high greenhouse gas emissions have been... 

Newmont to spend $500m over 5 years on climate initiatives
Newmont CEO Tom Palmer

Wits Mining Institute's Cawood highlights issues, trends miners must contend with

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th December 2020 There are a number of issues and trends impacting mining in the twenty-first century that require consideration by mining companies and higher education institutions offering mining qualifications, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) Mining Institute director Professor Frederick Cawood has... 

China converting battery electric vehicles into platinum-linked hydrogen fuel cell vehicles  

By: Martin Creamer     8th December 2020 Battery electric vehicles such as municipal buses and trucks are being converted into hydrogen fuel cell vehicles by China. “China already has a very well-established infrastructure to charge batteries and run battery electric trucks. But in the north, it’s very cold and we know battery electric... 

China converting battery electric vehicles into platinum-linked hydrogen fuel cell vehicles
World Platinum Investment Council Director of Research Trevor Raymond interviewed by Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.
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