Kalium Lakes draws a liner under Beyondie sulphate of potash ponds

Jaylon Environmental Systems is to supply and install the evaporation pond liner at Kalium Lakes’ Beyondie sulphate of potash project (BSOPP), in Western Australia, as part of a contract agreed between the two parties.

The contract includes the supply, management of delivery and installation of 1 mm HDPE liner covering a total evaporation area of approximately 400 ha for the Stage 1 BSOPP 90,000 t/y sulphate of potash (SOP) facility.

The BSOPP project aims to commence production at 82,000 t/y of SOP in 2020, before ramping up to 164,000 t/y of SOP for domestic and international sale. An initial mine life of between 30-50 years is anticipated for a project designed to be a low cost, long life and high margin producer, Kalium Lakes said.

Earlier this month, Kalium Lakes secured gas supply and transport for Beyondie SOP project following deals with APA Group and Shell Energy Australia.

In 2017, Jaylon successfully completed the supply and installation of the liner for the BSOPP’s 10 ha pilot scale ponds, according to Kalium Lakes. “Jaylon has now submitted the most competitive and compliant offer for the full project works, resulting in this A$15 million ($10.3 million) major contract award,” the company said.

The scope under this contract has already commenced, with an initial order of A$1 million worth of liner placed in May 2019 as part of early works and first deliveries to site already completed. The balance of the contract scope will commence following a final investment decision (FID) by Kalium Lakes, due shortly.

Kalium Lakes Chief Development Officer, Rudolph van Niekerk, said: “The use of Jaylon during the pilot scale trials continued to validate Kalium Lakes’ de-risking strategy, where we work collaboratively to develop bespoke, low cost and fit for purpose solutions for the BSOPP.

“The use of an evaporation pond liner has been a much-debated topic. For Kalium Lakes, the cost of the supply and installation of the liner represents less than 7% of the project’s total capital cost but results in an increased SOP process recovery of more than 15%.

“Our lined pond design provides a pond system constructed on trafficable, off lake surfaces, allowing for harvesting by heavy machinery months, if not years, ahead of the alternatives.

“With lined ponds there is virtually no leakage of the high value concentrated brines, delivering excellent recovery rates, a smaller pond area, less brine pumping, low operating costs and an extended mine life. It simply is a ‘no brainer’,” he said.