The new mining company Mineraria Gerrei, which is based in Sardinia, has acquired exclusive exploration rights for the esteemed Silius mine, situated roughly 50 km from Cagliari.
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This noteworthy accomplishment signifies the commencement of a fresh chapter for the mine. It is poised to recommence fluorspar production after a substantial overhaul of its infrastructure and production methods, following an extended period of inactivity.
Having an investment of over 44 million euros, Mineraria Gerrei plans to restart the mine and revitalize the full area by investing in advanced technology and extraction techniques.
Using innovative and modern production systems will assist in ensuring the least effect on the surrounding environment. Also, it is a chance to offer employment to the local communities in the area where the mine will be functional.
Silius mine has been projected to provide a splendid yearly production of around 70,000 tons of fluorspar, thereby boasting a purity of 97.5%.
Also, it is anticipated to produce 6,800 tons of galena. These estimates are considerable as they fill the broadening gap between the increasing demand and restricted supply of such vital resources.
Global fluorspar demand has been estimated to reach around 10 million tons annually in 2030 and more than 18 million tons per annum in 2050, in comparison to the production of between 6 and 7 million tons over the last ten years, with a restricted number of new extraction sites that is under development.
With the mining concession that has been granted by the Region of Sardinia, Mineraria Gerrei is poised to make a crucial contribution to Italy and Europe, as Fluorspar is categorized as a strategic mineral by the European Union and the world’s leading economic powers.
The availability of this vital raw material will support national independence concerning resource supply and promote economic resilience and stability.
Fluorspar is a necessary mineral for various industries vital to global electrification, such as the battery, superconductor, and photovoltaic panel production sectors, but also for other hi-tech sectors like fluoropolymers.
Besides, fluorspar is a main resource utilized in aluminum and steel production, pharmaceuticals, optics, ceramics, fireproofing materials, and refrigerants.
Resuming the Silius mine is a fundamentally important step for the rebirth of the area and for the induced activities it can generate. Together with our partners, we aim to relaunch the mining industry, which has been at a standstill for a long time in that area, with the utmost attention to the community and the environment.
Umberto Gioia, Managing Director, Mineraria Gerrei
“The approved project applies the principles of the circular economy to the mining industry,” added Alessandro Murroni, the company's General Manager, “foreseeing the complete re-use of processing by-products, the saving of essential resources such as water through the introduction of advanced recirculation and purification systems in production processes, the progressive electrification of mining equipment and plants, the environmental recovery of areas, and the self-production of energy from renewable sources.”
Matteo Maccabelli, Managing Director of Edilmac and shareholder of Mineraria Gerrei, concludes, “Particular attention will also be paid to all aspects of training and safety at work, through refresher and permanent training programs for personnel, the use of the latest technologies for the mechanization and remote control of extraction processes, and the adoption of advanced systems for the detection and management of vehicles and personnel both underground and on the surface.”
Also, the restart of Mineraria Gerrei will introduce new opportunities to the area: the plan is to employ nearly 100 specialized roles, with particular skills in the management of advanced plants and machinery and in mining-related processes in general, from the electrification of processes to mining with groundbreaking techniques.