Tag Archives: Stuart Tonkin

Northern Star shores up KCGM energy supply with Newmont Kalgoorlie power deal

Newmont has agreed to sell its Kalgoorlie power business to Australia’s Northern Star Resources Ltd in a deal that could see the leading gold miner pocket $95 million of cash.

The deal follows the January 2020 sale of Newmont’s 50% stake in Kalgoorlie Consolidated Gold Mines (KCGM). Of the $95 million in cash, $25 million relates to an option payment previously received from Northern Star as part of this stake. The cost of the option will be deducted from the final purchase price, leaving Northern Star to pay the balance of $70 million at completion, expected to occur in December 2021.

Newmont said the Kalgoorlie power business has been a profitable asset for Newmont since the sale of its stake in KCGM. It supplies electricity to KCGM via a suite of contracts, licences, approvals and third-party arrangements, including a 50% interest in the 110 MW duel fuel gas turbine Parkeston Power Station near Kalgoorlie, owned in joint venture with Canadian energy utility, TransAlta Corp.

Northern Star said the purchase provided the company with significant synergies and value, including infrastructure and power security to support the requirements of KCGM; lower power costs at KCGM; further options for Northern Star to implement renewable energy.

Northern Star Managing Director, Stuart Tonkin, said: “The purchase means our Kalgoorlie power supply will now form part of our studies into ways to meet our commitment to becoming carbon-neutral.”

Newmont President and CEO, Tom Palmer, added: “Australia is a critical contributor to Newmont’s global portfolio of world-class assets, located in top-tier jurisdictions. With the sale of this non-core asset, we will continue our regional focus on delivering long-term value at our Boddington and Tanami operations and advancing our future project pipeline through active exploration campaigns.”

RCT and Northern Star carry out ‘history-making’ trial in WA’s Goldfields region

RCT and Northern Star Resources have recently completed an autonomous technology trial in Western Australia’s Goldfields region that bodes well for the future of underground remote operations centres in the state.

In early October, RCT set up a ControlMaster® Automation Centre at the Western Australian School of Mines (WASM) in Kalgoorlie with a network connection to an underground LHD equipped with ControlMaster Guidance Automation at the East Kunduna Joint Venture (EKJV) mine.

EKJV is a joint venture between Northern Star, Tribune Resources and Rand Mining, managed by Northern Star  and located around 40 km away from Kalgoorlie.

The mining method at the Kundana operations is from underground using up-hole longhole stoping with paste backfill.

The project to set up a Remote Operating Centre (ROC) was a combined effort by technical specialists from RCT and Northern Star Resources, RCT said.

Once operational, a Northern Star Resources equipment operator controlled the ControlMaster Guidance Loader from the WASM Kalgoorlie facility and resumed site required remote production rates.

Northern Star Resources currently uses ControlMaster Guidance Automation on its underground LHD fleet at the EKJV from an onsite Surface Control System.

RCT said: “The trial is a history-making event for the Goldfields region and represents an exciting opportunity for both Northern Star Resources and RCT and what can be achieved through the use of smart technology.”

RCT Kalgoorlie Branch Manager, Rick Radcliffe, said: “This trial has helped both businesses to understand what future opportunities there are in autonomous technology, which is not only exciting for both business but the local Goldfields community as well.

“To conduct the trial from the WA School of Mines is also a story worth sharing with the wider mining and METS (mining equipment technology and services) community, to showcase the great innovation coming from the Western Australian Goldfields region.”

ROCs represent great job opportunities for members of the labour force who traditionally would not be able to work on a mine site due to various lifestyle or personal factors, he added.

Chief Executive Officer of Northern Star Resources, Stuart Tonkin, said: “ROCs are proven for surface operations, but this advancement for an underground application is a significant development led by RCT in the Kalgoorlie Goldfields.”

He added: “Northern Star Resources encourages continual improvement and innovation, and we are very pleased with RCT’s commitment to developing practical mining solutions.”