Tag Archives: zinc

Byrnecut wins five-year contract extension at 29Metals’ Golden Grove mine

29Metals Limited says it has renewed the underground mining services agreement with Byrnecut Australia for the Golden Grove mine, in Western Australia, for a further five years, commencing from October 1, 2022.

The renewed contract extends the long-standing relationship with Byrnecut at Golden Grove, with the existing contract entered in 2017, providing continuity of operations.

The renewed contract is on substantially the same terms as the existing contract and covers development and production in the Gossan Hill and Scuddles mines at Golden Grove.

Under the renewed contract, 29Metals has formalised a commitment to identify and evaluate opportunities to collaborate on sustainability and ESG matters, reflecting 29Metals’ commitment to performance in these two areas, it said.

Golden Grove is a copper, zinc and precious metals mining operation, with the first mining discovery in the area dating back to 1971. Mining operations commenced in 1989 with the development of the Scuddles underground mine, followed by the commencement of mining at the Gossan Hill underground mine in 1996 and the Gossan Hill open-pit mine in 2012. In 2020, the mining rate at the operation was 1.44 Mt.

29Metals Managing Director & CEO, Peter Albert (pictured third from the left, shaking hands with Byrnecut Executive Chairman, Steve Coughlan), said: “After assessing a number of options, including owner mining, we are delighted to renew the agreement with Byrnecut and extend our relationship at Golden Grove. Byrnecut is a leading mining contractor in Australia and globally, and has been a key business partner at Golden Grove both before and since the 29Metals IPO.

“There is a strong alignment between our two companies from an operations, performance, and values perspective. With the new contract, we are extending that alignment to include a commitment to collaborate on sustainability and ESG matters where 29Metals will benefit from Byrnecut’s reach and experience globally.”

Ivanhoe and Gécamines break ground on Kipushi processing plant

Ivanhoe Mines President, Marna Cloete, has announced that Kipushi Corporation SA (KICO), a joint venture between Ivanhoe and DRC state-owned mining company Gécamines, have broken ground on construction of the processing plant at the historic Kipushi zinc-copper-germanium-silver mine in the country.

In addition, Ivanhoe has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the provincial government of Haut-Katanga to study options for upgrading the DRC-Zambia border crossing in the town of Kipushi for commercial imports and exports.

The ground-breaking ceremony was attended by His Excellency Jean-Michel Sama Lukonde, Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Her Excellency Adèle Kayinda Mahina, Minister of State and Minister of Portfolio, Her Excellency Antoinette N’Samba Kalambayi, Minister of Mines, members of the provincial government of the Haut-Katanga Province and other national, provincial and local dignitaries, in addition to representatives from Ivanhoe, Gécamines and the town of Kipushi.

The delegation was presented with the development plan for returning the Kipushi mine to production by late 2024 – one hundred years since it was first opened and 30 years since it was placed on care and maintenance.

The ceremony follows the release of results of the Kipushi 2022 Feasibility Study, announced in February 2022, as well as the agreement signed between Ivanhoe Mines and Gécamines to bring the Kipushi mine back into production.

The study evaluates the development of an 800,000 t/y concentrator and underground mine, producing on average of 240,000 t/y of zinc contained in concentrate over a 14-year life of mine. The successful commencement of commercial production would establish Kipushi as the world’s highest-grade major zinc mine, with an average head grade of 36.4% Zn over the first five years of production, according to Ivanhoe.

Existing, rehabilitated surface and underground infrastructure allow for significantly lower capital costs than comparable development projects, Ivanhoe said. The estimated pre-production capital cost, including contingency, is $382 million. This infrastructure also allows for a relatively short construction timeline of two years, with the principal development activities being the construction of a conventional concentrator facility and supporting infrastructure, together with the restart of mining activities underground.

Ordering of long-lead equipment is underway and early construction activities have commenced. Financing and offtake discussions, including a pre-payment facility of $250 million, are well advanced with several interested parties, the company added.

Ivanhoe’s Cloete said: “Kipushi is exceptional, not only because of the renowned Big Zinc deposit, which is one of the world’s richest orebodies, but more importantly because of the people of Kipushi and the unique partnerships that make today’s ceremony possible.

“We now have our sights clearly set on the re-start of production in 2024. The re-birth of the historic Kipushi Mine will be a great achievement for Ivanhoe Mines, our partners and shareholders, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.”

The Kipushi Mine is strategically located less than 1 km from the DRC-Zambia border, which will be the gateway for Kipushi’s products to global export markets.

On August 24, 2022, Ivanhoe Mines and the Province of Haut-Katanga signed a MOU concerning the construction of a dedicated, commercial border post for the Kipushi Mine, together with the upgrading of the existing border post in the town of Kipushi, which currently only serves local traffic between DRC and Zambia.

This new commercial border crossing will provide a significant advantage to the Kipushi Mine as a direct means of importing materials and consumables, as well as clearing customs and exporting products from the mine, and will provide socio-economic benefits to the town and Province of Haut-Katanga, Ivanhoe said.

The Kipushi Mine has a long and storied history as a major producer of copper and zinc. Built and then operated by Union Minière for 42 years, Kipushi began mining a reported 18% copper deposit from a surface open pit in 1924. It was the world’s richest copper mine at the time, according to Ivanhoe. The Kipushi Mine then transitioned to become Africa’s richest underground copper, zinc and germanium mine. State-owned Gécamines gained control of Kipushi in 1967 and operated the mine until 1993, when it was placed on care and maintenance due to a combination of economic and political factors.

Over a span of 69 years, Kipushi produced a total of 6.6 Mt of zinc and 4 Mt of copper from 60 Mt of ore grading 11% Zn and approximately 7% Cu. It also produced 278 t of germanium and 12,673 t of lead between 1956 and 1978.

Most of Kipushi’s historical production was from the Fault Zone, a steeply-dipping orebody rich in copper and zinc that was initially mined as an open pit. The Fault Zone extends to a depth of at least 1,800 m below surface, along the intersection of a fault in carbonaceous dolomites.

Before Kipushi was idled in 1993, Gécamines discovered the Big Zinc deposit at a depth of approximately 1,250 m below surface and adjacent to the producing Fault Zone. The Big Zinc Deposit has not been mined and is the initial target for production as outlined in the 2022 feasibility study.

Since acquiring its interest in the Kipushi Mine in 2011, Ivanhoe’s drilling campaigns have upgraded and expanded the mine’s zinc-rich measured and indicated mineral resources by more than double to an estimated 11.78 Mt grading 35.34% Zn, 0.80% Cu, 23 g/t Ag and 64 g/t Ge, at a 7% zinc cutoff.

In addition, Ivanhoe’s drilling expanded Kipushi’s copper-rich measured and indicated resources to an additional 2.29 Mt at grades of 4.03% Cu, 2.85% Zn, 21 g/t Ag and 19 g/t Ge at a 1.5% copper cutoff.

Once in operation, the Kipushi Mine is expected to be powered by clean, renewable hydro-generated electricity and is set to be among one of the world’s lowest Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emitters per tonne of zinc metal produced, according to Ivanhoe.

South32 making engineering and design headway at Hermosa project

A stellar set of annual financial results has provided the ideal backdrop for South32 to update shareholders on its rapidly progressing Hermosa project in Arizona, USA.

Released late last month, the company’s 2022 financial year results showed off record earnings of $2.6 billion, record free cash flow from operations of $2.6 billion and record return on invested capital of 30.1%.

With group copper-equivalent production expected to increase by 14% in the next financial year, South32 looked to be well leveraged to in-demand metal markets at the right time.

The company has progressively been repositioning its portfolio toward metals critical for a low-carbon future, having already established a pipeline of high-quality development options. One of these high-quality development options is Hermosa.

Hermosa, which the company acquired outright back in 2018 as part of a takeover of Arizona Mining, is key to the company’s critical metals pursuit, having exposure to base and battery metals that are expected to grow in demand – both domestically in the US and internationally.

It is being designed as South32’s first ‘next generation mine’, according to Hermosa President, Pat Risner, with a series of technical reports highlighting its use of automation and technology to minimise its impact on the environment and target a carbon-neutral mining scenario in support of the group’s goal of achieving net zero operational greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

These same reports also highlighted the potential to develop a sustainable, low-cost operation producing zinc, lead and silver from the Taylor deposit, with the bonus of possible battery-grade manganese output for rapidly growing domestic markets from the Clark deposit.

In the latest results, the company said it was devoting $290 million of growth capital expenditure in the 2023 financial year to progressing Hermosa as it invests in infrastructure to support critical path dewatering and progress study work for the Taylor Deposit. This is ahead of a planned final investment decision expected in mid-2023, which should coincide with the feasibility study.

South32 is devoting $290 million of growth capital expenditure in the 2023 financial year to progress Hermosa

Some $110 million of this was assigned to construction of a second water treatment plant (WTP2) to support orebody dewatering at the asset, alongside dewatering wells, piping systems and dewatering power infrastructure.

An additional $95 million was slated for engineering and initial construction ahead of shaft sinking at the operation, plus work to support power infrastructure and road construction.

The remaining amount was expected to support work across the broader Hermosa project, including Clark study costs and the Taylor feasibility study.

All signs from these results are that the company is laying the groundwork to develop this project ahead of that mid-2023 deadline.

In another sign of progress, South32 recently signed a “limited notice to proceed” for shaft engineering and design at Hermosa with contractor Redpath, Risner confirmed, adding that the award represented a positive step forward for the project.

“We look forward to continuing our engagement with local communities and all of our stakeholders as we make further progress with the project,” he said.

Redpath will no doubt be evaluating the technical studies that have been signed off to this point and informing future reports.

The PFS design for Taylor is a dual shaft mine which prioritises early access to higher grade mineralisation, supporting zinc-equivalent average grades of approximately 12% in the first five years of the mine plan. The proposed mining method, longhole open stoping, is similar to that used at Cannington, in Australia, and maximises productivity and enables a single stage ramp-up to the miner’s preferred development scenario of up to 4.3 Mt/y.

Yet, the Clark deposit opportunity – which has become even more tantalising with the US Government invoking the Defense Production Act and supporting the production of critical metals including manganese – could see the plan change.

The company says it may accelerate the prefeasibility study for the Clark deposit, which is spatially linked to the Taylor deposit. A scoping study has previously confirmed the potential for a separate, integrated underground mining operation producing battery-grade manganese, as well as zinc and silver from the deposit.

South32 previously said Clark has the potential to underpin a second development stage at Hermosa, with future studies to consider the opportunity to integrate its development with Taylor, potentially unlocking further operating and capital efficiencies.

With a PFS selection study expected later this year, investors and interested parties will soon know the role Clark could play in the wider Hermosa project.

What is easy to gauge already is that Hermosa is progressing on a track that many other development projects in in-demand sectors have gone down.

Redpath awarded underground mining services agreement at MMG’s Dugald River mine

Redpath Australia says it has been awarded a new underground mining services contract at MMG Limited’s Dugald River mine in northwest Queensland.

Dugald River is one of the world’s top 10 zinc producers, located some 65 km northwest of Cloncurry. It produced 41,655 t of zinc concentrate and 4,740 t of lead concentrate in the June quarter.

The contract involves all underground development activities and will require up to 200 personnel in various management, operational and trades roles, with mobilisation commencing in the coming months, Redpath said.

Back in September 2020, Barminco agreed the terms of a variation and extension to its development and production contract at Dugald River, with the variation extending the term of the contract by 18 months to December 31, 2022.

FLSmidth to highlight full flowsheet expertise with ShalkiyaZinc project delivery

FLSmidth has signed a contract, valued at around DKK950 million ($130 million), to supply a range of mineral processing equipment to ShalkiyaZinc, the operator of a zinc-lead mine in the Kyzylorda Region of Kazakhstan.

The equipment will transform the plant into a world-class facility that efficiently separates minerals with a minimised environmental impact, the OEM says.

Under the agreement, FLSmidth will supply two underground crushing stations with a materials handling system to the process plant; a full package of comminution and separation equipment, including SAG and ball mills, mill circuit pumps and cyclones; the zinc-lead concentrate flotation and regrinding circuit, including nextSTEP, VXP vertical mills, concentrate thickeners and Pneumapress filters; and reagents preparation and dosing area. Full plant automation is also included, as well as installation and commissioning supervision services.

The new concentrator will be supported from FLSmidth’s new in-country service Supercentre in Karaganda, Kazakhstan.

The equipment delivery is to be completed during 2024, with commissioning to start before the end of that year.

Mikko Keto, Group CEO at FLSmidth, said: “We are excited to receive this first order from ShalkiyaZinc, which highlights our full flowsheet expertise. The wide range of equipment included in the order will help ShalkiyaZinc save on both capital expenditure and operating expenditure; our new nextSTEP flotation technology will improve the quality of the concentrates, the SAG mill will provide more flexibility, while the automation and digital solutions will further enable water and energy savings alongside safer operations.

“We look forward to making this a success on so many levels.”

Assel Rakhimova, Chief Project Director of Tau-Ken Samruk, which owns ShalkiyaZinc, said: “After testing and basic design work executed by FLSmidth, we are pleased to enter this new phase of collaboration with the procurement of critical technologies to improve the productivity and sustainability of our plant. We believe in successful execution and look forward to receiving the ordered equipment according to the schedule for installation and to continue working with FLSmidth on commissioning services and spare parts.”

Sandvik to deliver ‘biggest BEV fleet to date’ for Foran’s McIlvenna Bay

Foran Mining has selected Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions to supply a fleet of 20 battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), including trucks, loaders and drills, for its McIlvenna Bay project in Saskatchewan, Canada.

Set to be one of the world’s first carbon-neutral copper development projects, McIlvenna Bay will be powered by clean hydroelectric power and designed to take advantage of Sandvik’s latest technological advances in sustainable mining, the OEM says.

Sandvik’s biggest BEV fleet to date will include seven Sandvik 18-t-payload LH518B loaders (pictured dumping into a TH550B), six Sandvik 50-t-payload TH550B trucks, four Sandvik DD422iE jumbo drill rigs, two Sandvik DL422iE longhole drills and one Sandvik DS412iE mechanical bolter. Delivery of the equipment is scheduled to begin next year and continue into 2025, Sandvik says.

Sandvik will also provide on-site service support and Battery as a Service by Sandvik at the underground copper-zinc mining project located in east-central Saskatchewan.

Jakob Rutqvist, VP Strategy and Commercial for Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions’ Battery and Hybrid Electric Vehicles (BHEV) Business Unit, said: “This record contract is the culmination of a year-long collaborative effort between Foran Mining and Sandvik and demonstrates a shared vision that electrification will drive the future of sustainable mining. BEVs have enormous potential to reduce a mining operation’s carbon footprint, and Canada continues to be the epicentre for mining electrification and a blueprint for what to expect in other major mining regions very soon.”

Copper and zinc are critical metals for the transition to a low-carbon future as essential elements of electrical grids, solar panels, wind turbines and batteries. The McIlvenna Bay project intends to supply those minerals in a way that will not only be carbon neutral but ultimately have a net positive impact on the climate, according to Sandvik.

Dave Bernier, Chief Operating Officer of Foran Mining, said: “This is a very exciting period for Foran as we continue to execute on our initiatives to permit, construct and operate McIlvenna Bay. Sandvik is a global leader in industrial battery technology and we look forward to working together on our project. Utilising battery-electric equipment with semi- and fully-autonomous capabilities can help us achieve carbon neutral targets and provide a safer working environment, which is part of our Net Positive Business strategy as we look to deliver critical metals essential for global decarbonisation in a responsible and socially-empowering way.”

Foran Mining conducted a thorough analysis during its 2020 prefeasibility study to determine the investment case for BEVs compared with diesel. The company determined that BEVs would deliver better financial results at McIlvenna Bay when considering the savings generated through lower ventilation capital and operating costs.

That report, authored by AGP Mining Consultants Inc, envisaged the potential use of 7 Sandvik LH517i LHDs and 11 Artisan Vehicles (Sandvik) Z50 battery electric trucks for a 3,600 t/d of polymetallic ore operation.

Stefan Widing, President and CEO of Sandvik, said: “I am very pleased that Foran Mining has chosen Sandvik to deliver our leading battery-electric solutions for the pioneering McIlvenna Bay project. We see very strong momentum for our mining electrification offering, which offers great potential in driving more sustainable mining, helping customers to boost productivity, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve workers’ health.”

A dedicated on-site project team will be jointly working with the mine’s operations team to ensure the products and services in the delivery scope support the alliance on Foran’s journey towards more productive, efficient and sustainable mining, Sandvik said.

“Battery as a Service by Sandvik will enable McIlvenna Bay to get the most out of its battery-electric equipment by relying on unrivaled expertise to manage the capacity and health of batteries and chargers throughout their long lives,” it added.

Vast Resources forecasts production uptick as Mantis production drill rigs boost performance

Copper concentrate production at Vast Resources’ Baita Plai polymetallic (copper-gold-silver-zinc-lead-moly) mine in Romania continued to trend upwards in the June quarter, with the London-listed company expecting further output gains in the September quarter thanks to the use of a Mantis CMR4 production drill rigs that can help the company access more underground mining areas.

The June quarter results were in line with the company’s expectations, with concentrate production coming in at 268.8 t, compared with 229 t in the same quarter of 2021.

The tonnes milled for the period declined slightly by 6% to 11,292 t, with the grade rising 33% year-on-year to 0.6% Cu. Ore mined increased by 3.5% to 13,020 t for the period.

Looking forward to the September quarter and beyond, the company says it continues to forecast a substantial increase in copper concentrate tonnage produced due to the successful implementation of the Mantis CMR4 production drilling rig to access the ore on 17 level, as well as the increased ability to process ore due to the second milling circuit being commissioned, which has lifted capacity to 14,000 t/mth.

Back in May, Vast Resources announced that the first of two Mantis CMR4 production drilling rigs equipped with the latest Doofor rock drills had successfully completed functional drill testing underground. The Mantis is made by South African company Fabchem, through its subsidiary, Conax Machine Solutions, in Springs, Gauteng, which manufactures, refurbishes and repairs roof bolters and hydraulic rock drills, with its flagship manufactured products being the Mantis bolters and drills.

In addition to the increase in copper concentrate produced expected going forward, a substantial increase in the number of primary metres developed is forecast. This is due to the implementation of the second Mantis rig on the main belt incline on 18 level, whereby the original mine plan envisaged can be brought online, Vast Resources said. Current advances per blast from the main belt decline vary between 2-2.2 m per blast, which the company says is an excellent ratio to the length of hole drilled to the achieved advance.

The company explained: “The drill rig was extensively tested in a non-production environment to ascertain the capabilities of the machine for long hole production drilling. The drill rig has successfully completed a number of holes at varying inclinations, including vertically down, to depths of up to 12 m. The machine is currently deployed on 17 level in the production area drilling the first set of long holes for long hole production blasting.”

Vast Resources plans to remotely operate its Aramine L130D narrow-vein LHD

The accompanying remotely operated Aramine L130D LHD has arrived at the mine and was successfully transported underground, Vast Resources said. The machine, which is designed for narrow-vein applications, is currently undergoing testing and operator training inside the working stope below 17 level, it added.

Epiroc to supply Boliden’s Kristineberg and Renström mines with battery-electric, autonomous solutions

Epiroc says it has won a large order from Boliden for mining equipment, including battery-electric and automation solutions, for use at some of the company’s underground mines in Sweden.

Boliden, one of Europe’s largest mining companies, has ordered battery-electric versions of the Boomer face drilling rig, Boltec rock bolting rig and Epiroc’s largest automated Scooptram loader, the ST18, with Batteries as a Service. The ordered equipment also includes, among other machines, the Easer raiseboring rig and Epiroc’s newest production and face drilling rigs, Simba and Boomer, in the E-series.

The machines will be used at the Rävliden Kristineberg and Renström mine sites in northern Sweden. Boliden is mining zinc, copper, lead, gold, silver and tellurium at the mines.

On the Scooptram ST18 Battery, specifically, Mattias Pettersson, Global Portfolio Manager Underground Loaders, confirmed that the battery-electric machine heading to Boliden’s operations would be upgraded to Scooptram Automation. This will coincide with several other BEV customers receiving automation upgrades around the same timeframe, according to Pettersson, adding that the battery charging process will not be automated in this instance.

At Rävliden Kristineberg, Boliden and Epiroc are also involved in a project to develop and demonstrate an electric trolley truck system on a test track, with ABB being the third project partner.

The order is valued at more than SEK100 million ($9.8 million) and was booked in the June quarter of 2022.

“Boliden is focused on making its operations as safe, sustainable, and productive as possible and to produce metals with a low carbon footprint, and we are proud to support them on this journey,” Epiroc’s President and CEO, Helena Hedblom, said.

The Simba production drilling rig and the battery-electric loader Scooptram ST18 will be equipped with the 6th Sense solutions Simba Automation and Scooptram Automation. This will enable operators to control the machines remotely from the comfort of a control room, according to Epiroc. All units will be equipped with Epiroc’s telematics system, which allows for intelligent monitoring of machine performance and productivity in real time.

DELKOR’s MAXGen-equipped BQR flotation cells gain traction in mineral processing space

TAKRAF Group says it is registering strong demand for its new generation DELKOR BQR flotation cell, now equipped with the MAXGen mechanism for best-in-class metallurgical performance across a wide range of commodities.

Its MAXGen-equipped cells were first commercially applied at a cement works in India, in order to maximise limestone recovery. In other, more recent orders, the cells are being applied across a range of commodities with the technology selected for both its superior metallurgical performance, as well as DELKOR’s ability to provide a cost-effective and customised solution, the company said.

The string of recent orders includes 12 BQR flotation cells for a fluorspar processing plant in Spain. Here, the cells are equipped with eDART internal dart valves for the larger cells and external pinch valves for the small cell. eDART valves are known globally for their superior and safe design, TAKRAF said.

Five BQR flotation cells are also being used for the processing of iron ore in Honduras.

As part of an economically viable package, the cells were supplied with a reagent system and an air blower, as well as conductivity-type level sensors for accurate froth level detection and control, TAKRAF said.

The company also dispatched 11 BQR flotation cells for two gold mines in Australia.

Special features of this application included a dual outlet froth discharge box with dart plugs to divert the froth to different pipelines based on the metal grade of the froth. In addition, adjustable froth lips enable flexibility of froth discharge into the launders. Given the high ultraviolet (UV) levels of the environment, UV resistance paint was provided to protect the rubber lining, the company added.

In South Africa, four BQR flotation cells for iron ore recovery from a zinc, lead, silver and copper concentrator tailings stream were installed.

At this operation, a built-in cell by-pass system with external dart valves and a backpressure pipe were included in the flotation circuit. The bypass system allows bypassing of a cell for maintenance without having to shut the circuit down completely, while the rest of the cells can keep running with a proportionately reduced flow rate, TAKRAF explained. Backpressure piping ensures consistent slurry level management in the last cell, resulting in superior circuit metallurgical performance, meanwhile.

Finally, six BQR flotation cells were supplied for a nickel restart project in Australia. Features include a dual outlet froth discharge box with dart plugs, adjustable froth lips and a gearbox drive for the largest cell. UV resistant paint was also provided to protect the rubber lining.

Rajiv Krishnamurthy, Sales Manager – Europe DELKOR Products, said: “Our MAXGen mechanism is the result of extensive research and development. Our mechanism provides superior recoveries with higher mineral grade, along with faster flotation kinetics, which is achieved by generating favourable bubble size distribution and energy efficient hydrodynamics in the cell.

“Other outstanding benefits include the rotor and stator configuration, which enables the rotor to operate at a lower tip speed, reducing operational costs with lower power consumption and wear. These benefits also going a long way to supporting our group’s sustainability efforts.”

He concluded: “The demand for our new generation cells is testimony both to the excellence of our in-house developed technologies, as well as our global team’s commitment to providing our clients with a solution that exactly meets their needs. These projects are a great reference for DELKOR and serve to entrench our new generation flotation cells as a premier global flotation technology.”

EnviroGold highlights sustainable metal reprocessing credentials at Hellyer, Buchans Tailings projects

EnviroGold Global Limited says the precious (gold, silver) and battery metals (copper, zinc, lead) to be produced at the company’s Hellyer Tailings and Buchans Tailings reprocessing projects are expected to show a 96% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) intensity per gold-ounce-equivalent produced and an over 80% reduction in energy intensity relative to industry averages for conventional mining.

EnviroGold Global’s circular-economy business model is designed to produce precious, critical and strategic metals while reprocessing mine waste (tailings), which often contain significant quantities of valuable precious, critical and strategic metals.

EnviroGold Global’s analytics-driven approach to project origination and development leverages extensive mine production data, mill production data and geological records to identify tailings sites that are expected to contain significant quantities of residual metals due to refractory mineralogy and/or to the inefficiency of outdated technology used during legacy mining operations. In addition to recovering precious, critical and strategic metals, the company says it remediates the tailings consistent with environmental best practices, thereby reducing the environmental footprint of legacy mining. Further, by eliminating the extractive phase (mining) of metal production, the company expects to reduce the energy intensity of metal production by over 80%.

Leveraging the framework set forth by the World Resources Institute’s Greenhouse Gas Protocol, EnviroGold Global’s detailed assessments of expected Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions for the company’s planned operations at the Hellyer Tailings and Buchans Tailings reprocessing projects indicate that the carbon intensity of the gold-equivalent ounces of precious, critical and strategic metals produced by the company will be 96% lower than industry averages for conventional mining. S&P Global Market Intelligence reports that the typical conventional mining operations generated nearly 1 tonne of CO2 per gold ounce produced.

Just last month, EnviroGold Global executed a binding definitive agreement with Hellyer Gold Mines Pty Ltd to reprocess the tailings owned by HGM at its namesake mine in Tasmania, Australia (pictured). Hellyer is owned by NQ Minerals, with the company having a plan to increase its financial year production to 1.5 Mt of tailings reprocessing in 2022, from the estimated 1.4 Mt in 2021. Earlier this month, EnviroGold announced that test work completed to date on its proprietary flowsheet demonstrated gold recovery rates of 83.5% and silver recovery rates of 94.6% from the refractory, volcanogenic massive sulphide tailings at Hellyer.

In 2021, it announced the execution of binding commercial agreements, which saw the Buchans River Delta Reclamation Project added to its portfolio of environmental remediation and asset reclamation projects, saying that it planned to deploy proprietary modular, scalable reclamation technology & systems able to process up to 1,000 t/d of reclaimed tailings to remediate the legacy tailings while removing environmental contaminants and reclaiming valuable commodities at the project.

EnviroGold Global CEO, Dr Mark Thorpe, said: “Whether serving as critical components for batteries, electric vehicles and clean-energy infrastructure, or as a store of value and hedge against inflation, metals have never been more critical to the modern, global circular economy. EnviroGold Global’s Metals Without Mining business model is designed to sustainably satisfy the world’s increasing demand for precious, critical and strategic metals by eliminating the most carbon and energy intensive phases of metal production, creating a win-win for corporate, community and environmental stakeholders.”

The Global Tailings Review reports that the total number of active, inactive and closed tailings storage facilities worldwide exceeds 8,500. The global footprint of tailings exceeds 280,000 Mt with an additional 12,700 Mt produced annually. The value of precious, critical and strategic metals contained in global tailings sites is estimated to exceed $3.4 trillion.

EnviroGold Global’s commercial strategy involves identifying, qualifying and developing tailings reprocessing opportunities, generally targeting tailings sites with at least 6 Mt of tailings and gross recoverable metal value of $124/t of tailings. Tailings sites meeting EnviroGold Global’s internal assessment criteria pass through an advanced screening process, which includes detailed technical/economic modelling incorporating expected recovery rates and site-specific process-level economic analysis.

The company has reviewed over 325 global tailings sites to date and has eight “major projects” in its global tailings reprocessing portfolio. EnviroGold Global expects to commence commercial metal production in 2022 at its Hellyer Tailings reprocessing project. The company will continue to acquire the rights to tailings reprocessing opportunities around the globe and subsequent to achieving commercial metal production at the Hellyer project will leverage strategic operating partnerships to scale up commercial metal production at multiple projects simultaneously.