Mining activity has kicked off at Round Oak Minerals’ Barbara copper-gold project, about 60km north-east of Mount Isa.
executive officer Rob Cooper said the site establishment work had been
carried out and contractors started waste stripping to in the pit in the last
week of March.
SES Mining Solutions is providing the mining production workforce, with equipment supplied from Salmon Earthmoving.
have started mining about a month later than planned, due to the extreme
weather event in January/February, which prevented access to site,” Mr Cooper
contractors have mobilised now and we’re up and running.”
workforce was ramping up, with about 30 people on site this month, ramping up
to around 50 over the next few months, he said.
Ore from the project will be processed at Glencore’s Mount Isa copper operations, with the first of those deliveries expected around September and the first 100,000-tonne parcel processed in October.
The site fared better in the recent
North-West Queensland deluge than Round Oak’s Mt Colin copper project, between
Mount Isa and Cloncurry.
At that site Barminco is developing a decline for underground mining, with the portal located on an upper bench of the former open-cut mine.
The pit had been dewatered to the point
where it held less than 10 megalitres of water before the monsoon event in
“That rain event put a lot more water
back in the pit,” Mr Cooper said. “The volume of water at its peak went up to
about 280-300 megalitres.”
Fortunately, a diversion drain completed
just a week before the heavy rainfall had reduced the amount of floodwater
entering the pit by up to 50 per cent, he said.
But the inundation has set back the mine development
about two months.
Round Oak is also still continuing
dewatering operations at one of its two pits at the Wallace South gold project,
“Production has been about 50 per cent of
what we would normally get out of that mine,” Mr Cooper said.
However he said Round Oak had sufficient
ore stockpiled to continue to feed its Cloncurry processing facilities.