Energy Resources of Australia's (ASX:ERA) Ranger uranium mine may experience decreased production in 2010 compared to the previous year.
The mine saw 5,240 tonnes of uranium ore being extracted in 2009. However the expected production this year is being estimated between 4,300 to 4,700 tonnes.
The ERA is blaming the fall in uranium production on three main issues. They are firstly working through low ore grades of uranium. Secondly the higher than expected rainfall has made it difficult to access the lowest levels of the mine at this time. And lastly the south wall of the Ranger mine seems to have been having stability problems.
The 36% slump in uranium oxide production reported by ERA in the first half will lower the year end output by 18% as compared to 2009. However the sales will remain in the vicinity of about 5,000 tonnes due to inventory management.
Energy Resources of Australia is one of the largest uranium producers in the world, producing around 10 per cent of the world's mined uranium production. Since 1980, the Company has mined ore and produced drummed uranium oxide at its Ranger mine, 260 kilometres east of Darwin in Australia's Northern Territory.
ERA also holds title to the Jabiluka deposit, 22 kilometres north of Ranger. This world-class deposit is under long term care and maintenance and will not be developed by ERA without the consent of the Mirarr Traditional Owners.