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New Nickel Mine for Tasmania

A proposed nickel mine in northern Tasmania is being seen as a source of economic boom for the region. Proto Resources (ASX:PRW) has shown interest in Barnes Hill, near Beaconsfield for the last few years. The company have now been granted a license for an open cut nickel mine in the region.

The company has been surveying the region since 2007. Chairman of the Sydney based company, Andrew Mortimer said that the mine would have a lifetime of 16 years and would be expected to produce 250,000 tonnes of nickel per annum.

Proto Resources said that the mine would generate about a hundred jobs in the region. A fact that has been welcomed by the West Tamar Council. Barry Easther, the Mayor of the West Tamar Council said that he had been briefed by the company executives yesterday and believed that the mine would be good for the economic welfare of the region.

Aircore Drilling at Barnes Hill in late 2009. Image Credit: Proto Resources

He said that a company like that would obviously spend significant sums of money in the Tamar Valley, and so from the economy point of view, it will be very beneficial.

As per Proto Resources website, Barnes Hill is endowed with highly lucrative economics which are set to be enhanced further through the application of unique nickel laterite processing technology. The successful deployment of this technology promises to slash OPEX and CAPEX costs by ‘recycling’ sulphuric acid and turning minor metals into saleable products.

On the exploration front, Proto Resources is exploring its Lindeman's Bore, Wave Hill and Waterloo projects for the possibility that the Antrim Plateau Volcanics of the Northern Territory could host a Norilsk Style ‘super-system.’

In addition, the company has recently acquired a suite of projects in the Doolgunna region of Western Australia to explore for potential volcanogenic massive sulphide targets. This complements nickel sulphide targets including an acquired historical mine at Clara Hill.

Joel Scanlon

Written by

Joel Scanlon

Joel emigrated to Australia in 1995 and worked for five years in the mining industry as an exploration geotechnician, using GIS mapping and CAD software. Upon moving to the North Coast of NSW, Australia Joel worked as a graphic designer for a leading consultancy firm. After that, he ran a successful business providing web services to businesses along the eastern seaboard of Australia. During this time, he developed and launched News-Medical.Net. Joel has been working with AZoNetwork since the company was founded in 2000.


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