Tag Archives: Harmony Gold

Wafi-Gulpu mine to dump toxic tailings in the ocean

Tailings placement site identified

Cedric Patjole | Loop PNG | December 26, 2017

The Huon Gulf deep sea trenches have been identified as a suitable location for deep sea tailings placement [toxic waste dumping] from the Wafi-Golpu Project [mine].

The Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture (WGJV) presented during the PNG Mining and Petroleum Conference that the Huon Gulf deep sea trench was highly suitable.

Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture executive project director, Bryan Bailie, said in the presentation that local rivers, including the Markham, discharged 60 million tons per annum of natural sediment into the Markham Canyon, which reports to the New Britain Trench which is 9000 metres deep.

He said it was a highly disturbed environment, with regular purging of sediments through mass flow events and has low bio accumulated risk.

Huon Gulf is located on the northern coast of PNG, occupied by Morobe Province.

Huon Gulf offers spectacular scenery, accessible diving spots and a range of climates from sub-alpine and alpine to tropical.

Meanwhile, the Joint venture says a stable legislative and fiscal regime is critical to the development of the Wafi-Golpu Mine Project.

The component is among five key areas which the Joint Venture highlighted and include:

  • The completion of the updated feasibility study, and Environmental Impact Statement;
  • Completion of the permitting and approval by the Harmony and Newcrest boards;
  • Sustained landowner and community support; and
  • Ongoing close coordination between WGJV and Government agencies
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Upgrades to Harmony mine processing infrastructure complete ahead of schedule

Phila Mzamo | Inside Mining | November 30, 2017

Harmony Gold Mining’s planned shutdown at its Hidden Valley mine in Papua New Guinea (PNG) has been completed two weeks ahead of schedule and processing of ore recommenced mid November, according to the miner.

At the 2017 Mining and Petroleum Conference and Trade Fair in Papua New Guinea, the General Manager at Hidden Valley, Gary Davies, noted that processing operations at the mine started on 15 November 2017, following the planned four-month plant shutdown.

The company said more than 65% of the planned initial capital investment in the stage 5 and 6 cutback has been incurred to date and the project is progressing ahead of schedule and on budget, all whilst maintaining the highest safety standards.

“Mining at the Stage 5 cutback is a month ahead of schedule and on budget, with an annualised mining rate of 28 million tonnes per annum achieved in October 2017.

“It is expected that commercial levels of production will be achieved in the June quarter 2018, as per plan.”

Davies highlighted at the conference that safety at the mine is industry leading, with a lost-time injury rate during the past twelve months of 0.2 per million hours worked and the last lost-time injury recorded in April 2017.

“The Hidden Valley team showcases responsible mining – communities benefit, employees benefit and the mine is well on track to deliver annual steady state gold production of 180 000oz at an all-in sustaining cost of less than US$950/oz during FY19”, said Peter Steenkamp, chief executive officer of Harmony.

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Harmony and Newcrest prepare the ground for more marine waste dumping

An example of tailings spilling into rivers in Madang Province – Picture: Act Now!

Pangu hosts deep sea tailings workshop

Sophie Yaruso | PNG Loop | November 24, 2017

Members of Parliament have been challenged to seriously consider the sensitive issues surrounding deep sea tailings disposal and the impact it has on the submarine ecosystem and communities in the area.

Pangu Pati’s Leader Sam Basil and Morobe Governor Ginson Saonu have been commended for organising an interactive dialogue on deep sea tailings disposal: The Basamuk Experience & Implications for Huon Gulf.

Speakers at the session were from Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture led by the company’s head of external affairs, David Wissink, Dr Grant Batterham and David Gwyther, who presented preliminary research findings arguing the safety of submarine disposal of tailings.

In contrast, UPNG marine biologist Professor Ralph Mana was there to present ndings of marine life, including discovery of new species which could be endangered with deep sea disposal of tailings.

Basil, who is also Minister for Communications, Information Technology and Energy, said:

“We need extractive industries to bring in the revenue necessary to drive the infrastructure, utilities and social services for the people at the same time, a need to protect the people and the environment for generations to come.

“Education and knowledge is the focus here. The more MPs like me and my colleagues know, the better our decision can be for our country.

“This workshop is to create dialogue on the balancing act between our marine biodiversity and the need for economic development through extractive industries like mining,” he added.

Pangu has seven MPs from the Morobe Province where the Wa -Golpu Project is located.

Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture’s Wissink commended the Pangu Pati Leader’s initiative, saying it was good to see MPs engage with the people on important issues.

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Mining Minister Tuke meets Einstein’s definition of insanity

Panguna, Porgera, Ok Tedi, Tolukuma all tell the same story – large-scale mining is a disaster for local communities and the environment.

And neither Frieda or Wafi-Golpu have yet come up with a credible plan for managing their toxic tailings – but heck, lets go ahead anyway… 

Govt adamant to get two new mines operating: Tuke

The National aka The Loggers Times | November 22, 2017

THE Government is adamant to get two new mines operating in this term of Parliament, Mining Minister Johnson Tuke, pictured, says.
Tuke, who is also the Kainantu MP said in Lae after returning from a familiarisation visit to the Hidden Valley mine and Wafi-Golpu exploration site in Bulolo, Morobe.
Tuke earlier visited the Porgera gold mine, K92 mine, Frieda River exploration site and the Ramu nickel mine.
He said under the O’Neill-Abel government’s 100-day plan, ministers holding economic portfolios were tasked to ensure their respective departments aligned their operations towards producing revenue for the Government and bail the country out from economic down turn.
“This government is doing the ground work to have at least two mines operating,” Tuke said.
“This government is fully committed.
“In this term of Parliament we will initiate something.
“The developers and landowners are also serious in having the mines off the ground.”
Tuke said the companies doing exploration at the Frieda and Wafi-Golpu sites have already submitted their proposals to dig for minerals. It was for the relevant government agencies to study their proposals and advise the National Executive Council to grant the miners special mining leases.
“Frieda has conducted exploration for the last 40 years or more,” he said.
“Last week, I was at Frieda and talked to the people there. Their response was positive.
“My visit there was to identify issues with the people and the company, so that I can better advice the Government so that it can make well informed decisions.
“That is the case with Wafi too.”

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Newcrest looking at marine waste dumping for Wafi-Golpu

Newcrest focusing on Wafi-Golpu

The National aka The Loggers Times | November 16, 2017

NEWCREST hopes to complete an update of Wafi-Golpu feasibility study by end of the March quarter next year, chairman Pater Hay says.
Hay said during the company’s annual general meeting on Tuesday that the company’s most advanced exploration project was the Wafi-Golpu project which he described as a “world-class copper-gold deposit in Papua New Guinea”.
Wafi-Golpu is an advanced exploration project located in Morobe and is owned by the Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture, one of three unincorporated joint ventures between Newcrest (50 per cent) and Harmony Gold (50 per cent), formed in 2008.
Hay said Newcrest continued to progress work at Wafi-Golpu, with focus on:

  • Assessing external and internal generated power options, in the company’s search for greater reliability and lower operating costs;
  • Comparing deep-sea tailing placements options to terrestrial tailings storage options; and,
  • Re-assessing block cave panels, size and processing capacity due to increased knowledge as a result of ongoing drilling.

“We are targeting completion of an update of the Wafi-Golpu feasibility study by the end of the March 2018 quarter. We will likely submit an amendment to the special mining lease application depending on the outcome of the study update,” he said.
“The timing of the first production is dependent on study outcomes and grating of the special mining lease.
“More broadly, brownfield exploration, brownfield expansions and de-bottlenecking offers some of the lowest-cost, lowest-risk and highest-return growth opportunities in our business.
“As has been stated in our annual report, we are currently pursuing initiatives and projects to add extra process capacity at Cadia and to increase mill throughput at Lihir.”

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Hidden Valley four month shut down ‘to end soon’

Harmony Gold haemorrhage at Hidden Valley

David McKay | Mining Mx | November 7, 2017

“This has been planned and communicated since we acquired and announced the investment plan in Hidden Valley,” said Lauren Fourie, a spokeswoman for Harmony Gold.

“The four month plant stoppage was due to the ore gap caused by delaying the stage 5 and 6 investment – a decision made when we still held Hidden Valley 50:50 with Newcrest.”

“The ore gap allowed us to do upgrade and maintenance work on the plant and crusher. But this was always planned for,” she said.

“Hidden Valley will start processing again at the end of November. The investment plan is on budget and on schedule.”

Harmony Gold bought Newcrest’s stake in the mine for $1 in 2016 with a view to developing it for $180m.

The acquisition of Newcrest’s 50% stake in Hidden Valley was the first substantive decision of Harmony CEO, Peter Steenkamp since his appointment in November 2015, along with a plan to high grade Kusasalethu and reduce its life of mine from 25 years to six.

Since then, however, it has become clear that Harmony is a company in significant transition.

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Will Papua New Guinea allow another mine to dump toxic tailings in the sea?

Landowners have previously opposed marine waste dumping in Papua New Guinea

Harmony Gold and Newcrest investigating marine waste dumping for Wafi-Golpu

Mining Review | 7 November 2017

The Wafi-Golpu Joint Venture parties continued to progress activity in line with the forward work plan previously communicated, including engagement with the PNG Government on the application for a Special Mining Lease (SML) for the Wafi-Golpu project.

The current study work is focused on assessing internally-generated power options, developing deep-sea tailings placement options to compare with terrestrial tailings storage options, and reassessing block cave levels and increased mining rates due to increased knowledge obtained from further drilling undertaken during the year.

The Joint Venture parties are targeting a complete update of the feasibility study by the end of the March 2018 quarter. The focus of this work is to further optimise the business case and confirm any amendments necessary to the supporting documents for the SML application.

Timing of first production is dependent on the updated study outcomes and the granting of the SML.

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