Nordgold Group is looking to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions with the construction of a new 33 MW power plant at its Lefa mine in Guinea.
The gold producer has signed an engineering, procurement and construction agreement with China manufacturing service group SUMEC, a key member of China National Machinery Industry Corporation (SINOMACH), to design and construct the plant.
The new heavy fuel oil facility will replace the existing power plant, in turn reducing both fuel consumption for electricity production by 15% and engine oil by 30%, according to Nordgold. This will result in a 17,000 t/y reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the company said, which is in line with Nordgold’s climate change objectives as well as its commitments to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s largest shipbuilding company and leading manufacture of heavy industry machinery, is providing the power plant’s main generating equipment.
Nordgold said: “The power plant will enable a significant reduction in operating costs, in addition to enhancing the stability of the electricity supply for over 15 years of Lefa’s life of mine. Moreover, the installation of the latest fire detection systems will increase employee safety.”
The design and construction of the project is expected to cost around $23 million, with the power plant expected to be completed by the end of 2021.
During construction, hundreds of additional jobs will be created and essential construction materials including sand, cement, gravel amongst others will be sourced locally from Guinean suppliers, according to Nordgold.
Nikolai Zelenski, CEO of Nordgold, said: “Even during these challenging times, we remain committed to investing in Guinea. The new power plant is an important investment as it enables us to both decrease greenhouse gas emissions and provide sustainable power generation for our Lefa mine. We are looking forward to working with SUMEC and Hyundai to achieve this project.”
Nordgold acquired the Lefa mine in 2010, with annual gold output almost trebling since, according to the company. The mine, a conventional modern open-pit operation with three major mining areas and several smaller, higher grade satellite pits providing additional ore feed for the mill, produced 189,800 oz of gold in 2019.
Last year, Nord Gold the company did its climate change objectives no harm after entering into an exclusive agreement with Total Eren, an independent power producer specialised in renewable energies, and Africa Energy Management Platform, its strategic development partner, to construct a 13 MW solar photovoltaic power plant for its Bissa and Bouly gold mines in Burkina Faso.