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• Industry outlook for 2009
• Downturn hits hard
• Upbeat on oil shale
• Young engineers with spark
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14294 Take 5 & JAS folders.indd 1 31/3/08 2:49:44 PM
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 NEWS 1
2 Sticking with shale
Recent Queensland Government legislation has put the kybosh on new oil shale developments, due to long-
running environmental concerns about energy-intensive extraction processes.
However, Paradigm Metals is on a mission to ﬁnd suitable technology that will convince the State
Government to allow it to proceed with mining at its oil shale prospect near Cloncurry.
Managing director Graham Carman said he was conﬁdent that the government would eventually reverse its
opposition if it was presented with a sound case for development.
5 Bright futures
Engineers Australia’s Cairns local group recently named GHD’s Robby Chohan as its Young Engineer of
the Year. Mr Chohan is pleased that his involvement in a large local project allowed him to remain in the
It’s time for miners to kick up their heels, as 2008 winds down with
region where he grew up.
a string of parties. The Mining Advocate covers the social highlights
On Page 11, The Mining Advocate proﬁles another exciting young prospect, CN Barton Medal winner on Pages 19 and 20, and looks back at the year that was with a
collection of our front covers on Page 28.
Julie Lovisa - a fourth-year civil and environmental engineering student at James Cook University.
6 Stormy weather FEATURES
The toll from the current economic downturn continues to climb, particularly aﬀecting small to medium mining 11 People
and exploration companies.
12 Industry Update
A ﬂow-on eﬀect has been the reduction in business for mining supply companies, which are similarly A comprehensive wrap of exploration and
struggling to maintain suﬃcient cash ﬂow to ride out the gloom. operations in North Queensland and the
The Mining Advocate presents a snapshot of some of the aﬀected companies in North Queensland and the
Northern Territory. 16 Between Shifts
7 Silver lining 23 Bigger, Tougher, Better
22 Engineering Achievement
On a brighter note, many companies in northern Australia are forging ahead with development plans.
Some, like Incitec Pivot, are actually defying conservative trends and expanding their operations. 24 PRTS Feature
The Mining Advocate looks at the work planned for 2009 by players who are very much still in the game. 26 Health and Safety Feature
CONTACTS Advertising booking deadline
p. (07) 4755 0336 f. (07) 4755 0338 www.miningadvocate.com.au February edition: January 27
Email: ...........................................................firstname.lastname@example.org Managing editor: ......................... Robert Dark m. 0417 623 156 All material is copyright and cannot be reproduced in
Address: ..................................2/20 Keane Street, Garbutt, Q, 4812 Journalist: ....................................Michael Stevens m. 0432 279 684 part or in full by any means without written permission
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Postal: ...................................................... PO Box 945, Townsville, Q, 4810 Sales manager:....................... Michele Adams m. 0419 719 519 publication are not necessarily those of the publisher.
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2 NEWS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Paradigm Metals still upbeat
The company behind a planned oil shale about 90 per cent of Australia’s
known oil shale reserves, Mr
venture near Cloncurry hopes to prove Carman said the government
extraction can be environmentally viable. stood to receive signiﬁcant
royalties if it reversed its ban on
Paradigm Metals believes the OIL SHALE FACTS new mines.
Queensland Government will Oil shale refers to “There are plenty of open-
eventually reverse its opposition sedimentary rocks that cut coal mines, so we need to
to oil shale mining and allow the contain solid combustible demonstrate that we are a similar
company to develop its North organic matter called operation and that we can come
Queensland deposits. kerogen. up with acceptable technology,”
The Mines and Energy he said.
Legislation Amendment Bill The kerogen can be
Mr Carman said Paradigm
2008 was recently passed by decomposed to release
Metals had not set a timetable
State Parliament in order to hydrocarbons under an
for production but would liaise
place a ban on new oil shale elevated heating process.
with the government “when the
mines and a 20-year moratorium These can then be captured
time is right”.
on oil shale mining in the to produce synthetic crude
Apart from government
Whitsundays. oil and combustible gas.
policy, the company also faces an
According to the Queensland Only one oil shale mining obstacle in the form of declining
Government, oil shale operations lease currently exists oil prices due to the global
as they currently stand would in Queensland, near ﬁnancial crisis.
have high energy and water Gladstone. Mr Carman said oil shale
needs and could potentially
impact signiﬁcantly on mining was only justiﬁed during
ecosystems through emissions periods of high prices, but he
and wastewater. was conﬁdent that the eﬀects
Toolebuc shale oil, vanadium
The ban on new mines will of the ﬁnancial crisis would be
and molybdenum joint venture
be in place for at least two years reversed as the world continued
prospect near Cloncurry. to consume oil and as the peak
while the government reviews But in order to produce shale
diﬀerent processing technologies. oil situation took eﬀect.
oil, the company will have to The Mines and Energy
Paradigm Metals managing
convince the State Government Mr Carman did not claim that techniques and had already Legislation Amendment Bill
director Graham Carman said
the new legislation did not aﬀect that it can extract kerogen the development of acceptable rejected a high-impact retorting has also introduced wider public
the company in the short term from its organic limestones in processing technology was a method often used in past interest tests to all minerals covered
because it was still allowed to an environmentally eﬃcient certainty, but he said Paradigm operations. under the Minerals Resources Act –
drill and collect samples at the manner. Metals was evaluating diﬀerent With Queensland hosting see Page 3 for details.
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 NEWS 3
New legislation MINING AROUND THE WORLD
A Bill aimed at restricting oil shale mining in in respect of uranium and oil
shale, it is diﬃcult to speculate
Queensland bears ramifications for the wider on situations where the
resources industry, writes Michael Stevens. government might invoke the
New legislation targeting oil the government to consider The government stated during
shale mining in Queensland public interest when granting, Parliamentary debate that
could be seen by industry as amending and renewing public interest tests under the
increasing the sovereign risk exploration permits and mineral Act would continue to be used
of the State’s mining sector, development licences. sparingly.
according to Brisbane-based law He said the Bill also called for Member for Fitzroy Jim Pearce
ﬁrm Carter Newell. consideration of public interest said only eight mining lease
The Mines and Energy in decisions about whether applications had been rejected in
Legislation Amendment Bill or not to include particular Queensland since 1999.
2008 was introduced to restrict conditions in a new or renewed He said that in some
oil shale mining in Queensland. mining lease. circumstances the amendments
But a number of the Bill’s Mr Plumb said that if a under the Bill would provide
amendments apply to leases for large number of projects failed certainty for industry by
all minerals covered under the to obtain approval because preventing situations where pre- Stairway to Aircore, Kambalda, Western Australia, by Greg Tossel.
Mineral Resources Act 1989 of the wider public interest production leases were approved Photo: courtesy of Snowden.
– most signiﬁcantly, the Bill considerations, resource but ﬁnal mining leases were
introduces a broader scope of companies could look to rejected on the basis of public Kambalda is located 75km first nickel mine there in 1966.
situations in which government jurisdictions other than interest. south-east of Coolgardie in the Greg Tossel’s photo of sunrise
decision-makers will need to Queensland as better targets for The Queensland Resources Kalgoorlie region of Western over a drill rig at Kambalda
consider “public interest”. investment. Council has expressed its Australia. The region was (above) won the landscape
Carter Newell senior associate “But it really is a waiting disappointment with the at the centre of a gold rush category of this year’s
James Plumb said the granting game as we look towards the government’s introduction of the after discoveries in the 1880s Snowden Photo Competition.
of mining leases was already government for guidance as to legislation, which immediately and had a resurgence when For more information on
subject to a public interest test, how they see the changes being halted development of the Western Mining Corporation the competition visit www.
but changes under the Bill had implemented,” he said. Whitsundays’ McFarlane oil (WMC) established Australia’s snowdengroup.com.
increased requirements for “Aside from issues arising shale deposit.
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4 NEWS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Reaching out to NT youth
Getting them young is Engineers Australia’s
aim, with a raft of activities to help engage
Territory school students in science and maths.
If ﬁring catapults and making and tested their capabilities on
moon buggies is what it takes an undulating track.
to get Northern Territory kids Ms Carson said a vigorous
into maths and science, then marketing campaign before the
Engineers Australia is more 2009 event - including school
than willing to give it a go. visits and promotional DVDs -
The organisation’s Northern would help science and maths
Division is planning to hold its teachers energise their students
next science and engineering into forming teams.
challenge in Darwin and Alice The science and engineering
Springs in early May 2009. challenge is one event of a suite
Youth programs promoter of programs that Engineers
Rosemary Carson said the Australia will again support
challenge program, devised by and deliver into Northern
the University of Newcastle, Territory schools in 2009.
targeted students in Years 8, SMART Road Show staged
9 and 10 – a crucial period its inaugural remote visit in
for choosing the senior September 2008, entertaining
subjects required to go on primary school students with
to engineering studies at 30-minute shows on topics Science and engineering challenge supervisor Peter Hagan, from Engineers Australia, joins students from St John’s
university. such as robots, sound and the College during the “mission To Mars” event at this year’s Darwin-based challenge. Photo: Christopher Knight
Favourite events for students human body.
in the 2008 event included The Northern Division
the “war machine” challenge, is planning to involve with the World Solar Car provides project material for reaching out to young people
where participants constructed more schools in the remote Challenge – a race from teachers to integrate into their and helping to address the
a catapult from masking tape, schedule and arrange longer Darwin to Adelaide held lesson plans – will again beneﬁt serious problem of skills
wood and plastic bottles to ﬁre stays in 2009, depending on between October 25 and 31 from young engineers in the shortages.
tennis balls at a target. sponsorship. - to promote a large crowd to Territory who have oﬀered to “There is a 28,000 shortfall
Another hit was the “mission The 2009 SunChase solar both events. visit schools on request. of engineers in Australia and
to Mars” challenge, where model car challenge for EngQuest – a curriculum- Ms Carson said Engineers it’s predicted by 2010 there will
students built moon buggies students will be synchronised based web activity that Australia was focused on be a 40,000 shortfall,” she said.
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 NEWS 5
at city’s doorstep
the city should establish itself as
A local economist says Cairns should be a source of ﬂy in-ﬂy out labour
setting itself up as a labour supply base for to the PNG projects.
major PNG projects, writes Michael Stevens. Taskforce chair Sharon
Dawson said the projects would GHD senior structural and civil engineer Robby Chohan.
THE FACTS also provide much-needed Photo: Romy Siegmann
Cairns is continuing to look
opportunities to Cairns in the
to Papua New Guinea (PNG)
as one of the most promising
regions to export manpower and
Two major LNG plants
mooted for Port Moresby
Report points to massive
areas of construction, training
She said PNG had always
Keeping it local
mining services. Robby Chohan - who Cleanerseas Alliance project.
Speaking at a Cairns Chamber requirements for workers been important to the Cairns was named 2008 Young Mr Chohan said his
of Commerce luncheon, locally- Demand also expected in business community in terms of Engineer of the Year at responsibilities on the
based economist Bill Cummings construction, training and proximity and trade. the inaugural Engineers $180 million project were
said that before the recent fall maintenance areas As the closest Australian Australia Cairns local group
in mineral prices, two major city, Cairns already had well- signiﬁcant for someone with
gala night – believes keeping
liqueﬁed natural gas (LNG) established diplomatic, business large project work in only 10 years’ experience,
plants were planned for Port In a report released earlier this
and transport links with its regional Australia will help and the challenge was an
Moresby involving about $13 year, which is being considered
northern neighbour. it retain local engineers. important part of why he
billion in construction activity by the Cairns Chamber
of Commerce’s Resources “Several large companies Cairns born and bred, Mr had remained in the region.
over the next ﬁve years. Chohan graduated from
and Industry Taskforce, Mr operating in PNG have their The other award winners
He said some operations in James Cook University in
Cummings said construction Australian oﬃces in Cairns and at the gala night in Cairns
Cairns’ sphere of inﬂuence - 1997 and is now a senior
of the two major LNG plants we hope to attract more,” Ms were Tony Black from
northern Australia, PNG and structural and civil engineer
Papua Indonesia - had been would produce a massive Dawson said. Black & More (Professional
Members of the Cairns with GHD in Cairns.
reduced or cancelled due to the requirement for workers that Engineer of the Year) and
business community recently He won the Young
ﬁnancial downturn. could not be met in PNG. Mamu Rainforest Canopy
visited a PNG trade day in Engineer of the Year award
But he believed the larger He said Cairns’ large labour (Engineering Project of the
mainly for his work as lead
projects would continue, force, its desirability as a place Townsville presented by
structural engineer for the Year).
depending on activity within the to live and its strategic position Townsville Enterprise, Austrade
Chinese economy. in northern Australia meant that and Ausindustry.
Head Office: 7 Cava Close, Cairns QLD 4870
PO Box 198, Cairns QLD 4870, Australia
6 NEWS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
In come the administrators Project managers
as CopperCo hits the wall left reeling
CopperCo has appointed industry representatives heaped Navigating the ﬁnancial receiving a large expected
voluntary administrators, to smoked salmon onto their plates downturn has become payment has impacted
the surprise of many industry and quaﬀed specially labelled a gargantuan task for heavily on CPM.
commentators. CopperCo wine, managing Charters Towers-based It has closed its doors in
The company said it took the director Brian Rear lauded the Conglomerated Project order to resolve the issue,
decision after it was advised then-high copper prices, saying Management (CPM) after with a view to re-opening in
that a ﬁnancing transaction that copper oxide from the operation it did not receive payment March next year.
would have provided support was forecast to generate between it expected from a Chinese “If we could go out and
through new equity and debt $1 billion and $1.4 billion over company it was contracted to. ﬁnd other projects ourselves
facilities would not proceed. its predicted mine life of nine CPM director Paul we could trade our way
Media reports stated that the years. He did, however, say he Dale said the Chinese through the ﬁnancial crisis,
Perth-based miner acquired a was aware that metal prices could company – which he did not but at the end of the day, we
$50 million debt when it merged go down as well as up – a truism name – owed CPM and its owe so much to our creditors
with Mineral Securities earlier that became all too real. creditors $500,000 for project that we haven’t been able to
this year which it could not now Lady Annie was the ﬁrst management, earthmoving do that,” Mr Dale said.
repay despite having copper price greenﬁelds base metals mine and camp management He said that if the payment
protection in place for cathode to come online in Queensland services. issue was not resolved
production from its Lady Annie in more than a decade and was CopperCo managing director Brian He said the company had CPM would have to sell its
copper operation near Mount Isa. held up as an example by the Rear speaking at the opening suspended the project it was equipment and possibly scale
This situation would have been Queensland Resources Council ceremony for the Lady Annie mine undertaking, but had not back its business to project
almost unthinkable at the upbeat and State Government as they in late 2007. settled the amount and was consultancy.
oﬃcial opening ceremony for implored other companies to now communicating with Mr Dale said he knew
Lady Annie in October 2007, focus on exploring greenﬁelds the most dramatic of the CPM through lawyers. of other companies around
which The Mining Advocate prospects with a view to recent falls reported in North With many companies Charters Towers, including
attended. developing them. Queensland during the current tightening their belts to trucking and pumping
As government dignitaries and CopperCo’s collapse is perhaps ﬁnancial downturn. conserve cash during the businesses, that were also
ﬁnancial downturn, not struggling.
to certain conditions being satisﬁed. said the ore at Wolfram Camp contained
OZ Minerals – operator of Century Axiom Mining Limited signiﬁcantly more ﬁne material than the
zinc mine in the lower Gulf – stated it AXIOM MINING company originally expected, meaning
required time to continue negotiations Exploration oﬃces in Australia have that the operation was suﬀering from an
and that these negotiations could be been placed on care and maintenance and inability to deliver target headfeed grade
jeopardised if they took place during a staﬀ have been made redundant at the material to the run-of-mine stockpile.The
period of potentially extreme share price processing plant was also unable to recover
MATRIX METALS company’s Townsville base.
volatility. All ﬁeld operations undertaken an acceptable quality of concentrate.
The company appointed voluntary
administrators when it could not meet in Australia and Vietnam have been Mr Greenwood said Queensland
a substantial partial repayment of a suspended, including those at a number of Ores was investigating options to obtain
provisionally paid invoice from Glencore North Queensland tenements. necessary funding to focus on resolving
International. Axiom Mining geology director its mining and metallurgical issues, with
Matrix – which operates the John McCarthy said the suspensions a view to returning Wolfram Cap to
Leichhardt copper project in north-west fortuitously began as wet seasons production.
Queensland – said it had an oﬀ take ADITYA BIRLA MINERALS approached, when ﬁeld programs would
and sales arrangement that involved Aditya Birla Minerals has suspended have been curtailed in any event. He
Glencore making provisional US indeﬁnitely development work on the said the company was actively seeking
dollar-denominated invoice payments Ezperanza South project at its Mt Gordon interested parties for possible joint KANGAROO METALS
when copper cathode was delivered in operations. venture or other appropriate commercial The board has accepted an oﬀer by a
Townsville. These were then adjusted for The company stated that the project arrangements in relation to a number of consortium of investors to recapitalise
changes in the average US dollar copper would be placed on care and maintenance advanced projects. the company, in order to inject suﬃcient
price during the month of shipment. pending an upturn in the market, but cash into the company to support future
The timeframe between the provisional all other activities at the company’s Mt operations.
invoice and ﬁnal invoice could be several Gordon operations would continue as Earlier in 2008, Kangaroo Metals
months, and it had been Matrix’s practice normal. entered into a purchase agreement for
to convert the provisional payments into OLYMPIA RESOURCES assets in Tasmania including the Riverside
Australian dollars on receipt in order to The company is undertaking a strategic alluvial tin mine, which in part was meant
meet the company’s operating expenses. review of its operations including the as a test-bed for the company’s larger
Managing director Shane McBride . Harts Range abrasives project, 130km California Creek tin project in North
said that with the projected low copper LIONTOWN RESOURCES north-east of Alice Springs. Queensland.
prices there were likely to be further The company recently closed its Managing director Peter Gazzard said a Kangaroo Metals has now wound this
partial repayments over coming months Charters Towers base, laying oﬀ three slowdown in expenditure and production purchase agreement back.
of invoices provisionally paid when the geologists and several ﬁeld crew. activities and asset rationalisation would
price was high and, after discussions Chairman Timothy Goyder said the be considered.
with Glencore, it became apparent that company’s management and staﬀ had The full results of the review will be
it would not be possible to restructure also accepted reduced salaries and non- announced as soon as they are available
executive directors had agreed to accrue URAMET MINERALS
arrangements between the companies and have been considered by the Olympia Restructuring of the company’s
within a reasonable timeframe. director’s fees rather than being paid. Resources board as well as any further
During 2008 Liontown Resources corporate oﬃce and reductions in
proposed actions. administration and technical staﬀ have
released a maiden resource estimate of
194,000 tonnes of zinc, lead and copper been implemented.
for its Liontown project near Charters Chairman Sam Randazzo said Uramet
Towers. was scaling back its exploration activities
Mr Goyder said the resource was to preserve cash. He said Uramet would
OZ MINERALS insuﬃcient to support a stand-alone focus on attracting well-funded joint
At the time of writing, the company mining operation at current metal prices, QUEENSLAND ORES venture partners to assist with exploration
had frozen its shares until December 29 but it formed an excellent base to build on Operations have been suspended at the programs and would consider selling some
as it accepted an oﬀer from its lenders to through further exploration. He said that company’s Wolfram Camp tungsten and of its projects to add further cash to the
extend the date by which it was required in line with preserving available funds, molybdenum mine - between Mareeba company’s treasury.
to reﬁnance loan facilities worth $US560 the company had also entered into a joint and Chillagoe in North Queensland- Uramet has base metals, phosphate and
million (almost $A880 million). An venture with Exco Resources at its Fort to save on costs while mining and uranium exploration tenements focused
option also existed to extend this date past Constantine South iron oxide, copper and metallurgical issues are addressed. on the Georgina Basin in the Northern
December 29 to January 31, 2009, subject gold project near Cloncurry. Managing director Taﬀ Greenwood Territory and Queensland.
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 NEWS 7
Fortunes have been mixed for North Queensland and Northern
Territory mining companies over the last few weeks, with the
impact of the economic downturn being fully felt.
IPL plans $26m upgrade
Some companies have been forced to lay oﬀ staﬀ and curb their
operations, while others have fallen over completely.
But not everyone has a sad tale to tell – many companies in the
for northern operations
uranium, phosphate and base metals ﬁelds are pushing ahead Incitec Pivot Limited (IPL) will be in excess of one million
ﬁrmly with their projects in 2009. plans to invest up to $26 tonnes of fertiliser annually,” IPL
The Mining Advocate presents a snapshot of the developments million expanding its major northern Australian operations
for operations on both sides of the fence. northern Queensland facilities at manager Hans Van Bovene said.
Phosphate Hill, Mount Isa and A second phase of work
Townsville. involving installation of a ﬁfth
The capacity of IPL’s ﬁlter at the phosphoric acid plant
Minelec casts net wide fertiliser manufacturing plant at
Phosphate Hill will be lifted by
at Phosphate Hill at a cost of $35
million is under consideration.
40,000 tonnes a year through a If approved, it would increase
Interstate projects are helping the Kimberleys and it had series of projects to increase the capacity by a further 40,000
Townsville-based electrical previously completed work supply of sulphuric acid to the tonnes a year after completion by
contractor company Minelec for McArthur River Mining plant. the end of 2010.
push through the economic in the Northern Territory. The projects, due for Sulphuric acid and locally
downturn. Mr Birt said Townsville completion by 2010, include mined phosphate rock are the
The company recently was well situated to service construction of sulphuric acid two major inputs used in the
completed a project for interstate operations because storage tanks and train loading production of diammonium
Argyle Diamonds at its of its sound infrastructure facilities at Townsville, new phosphate and monoammonium
underground mine in and available labour force. sulphur handling and storage phosphate fertilisers at
Western Australia, which He said goods were easily facilities at Mount Isa, and minor Phosphate Hill.
involved the connection, the manufactured in the city, but “debottlenecking” at Mount Isa Further funding has also been Incitec Pivot’s Mount Isa acid plant.
testing and running of three transporting them interstate and at the phosphoric acid plant approved to conduct a viability
new high-voltage ventilation did present some challenges. at Phosphate Hill. study into the construction of rock for export sales. Phosphate
fans. Engaging in work outside “When stage one is completed a plant at Phosphate Hill to was recently given a positive
Manager Tom Birt of Townsville helped keep in 2010, for the ﬁrst time the produce up to 400,000 tonnes outlook for 2009 by respected
said the company would Minelec stable during the design capacity at Phosphate Hill a year of high-grade phosphate economist Allan Trench.
undertake more projects in ﬁnancial climate, he said.
decrease in operating costs. Copper Strike in North Queensland, which is a uranium project in the Northern Territory.
hopes to begin production at Einasleigh in greenﬁelds prospect with potential for an The company undertook a reverse
2010, but Mr Eadie said hold-ups could open-pit operation and coal seam gas. circulation and diamond drilling program
KRUCIBLE METALS LTD be expected with project ﬁnancing in the Mr Sheard said the company was at the project in the last quarter of
current economic climate. deciding whether to drill the project itself 2008, which it said returned signiﬁcant
KRUCIBLE METALS or bring a partner into a joint venture. The intercepts. Executive director Lindsay
Managing director Tony Alston said the company also planned more drilling work Dudﬁeld said production at Bigrlyi
prime focus for early 2009 was to establish at its Mt Agate iron-oxide copper gold was scheduled to begin in 2011, with a
joint ore reserve committee-compliant predicted 12-year mine life.
prospect near Cloncurry in 2009.
resources for the company’s Mount Isa
area polymetallic tenements. He said
the company would pursue resource
deﬁnition rather than exploration, with its ARAFURA RESOURCES
Phosphate South project the ﬁrst priority. Strategic development and exploration
general manager Richard Brescianini SOUTHERN URANIUM
said the company would spend 2009 NORTH QUEENSLAND METALS
Managing director John Anderson said The company is planning to take
progressing its deﬁnitive feasibility study the company looked forward to drilling
for the Nolans rare earths, phosphate and advantage of stronger revenues from
the Calvert Hills joint venture uranium increasing gold production at its Pajingo
uranium project in the Northern Territory. prospect in the Northern Territory at the
Mr Brescianini said 50 per cent mine near Charters Towers to intensify tin
start of the 2009 dry season. exploration at its Herberton projects.
production was planned at the project in He said a large airborne electromagnetic
MINEMAKERS 2011, ramping up to full capacity in 2013. Chief executive oﬃcer John McKinstry
The company was expecting a resource survey completed at Calvert Hills in said NQM had already established a
He said the mine would be a small-scale, 2008 successfully mapped prospective
statement to be ready in December for mineral reserve at the Baal Gammon
low-strip operation of about 800,000 unconformities and structures in the
its Wonarah phosphate project in the copper-tin-silver-indium project, which
tonnes of ore per annum. extensions to the nearby Westmoreland
Northern Territory, which managing the company envisaged as the ﬁrst of
director Andrew Drummond said would ﬁeld. The company also planned drilling several projects to feed a processing plant
dramatically increase a previous Rio Tinto at the Rum Jungle project in the NT and proposed for Herberton. Mr McKinstry
deﬁned resource of 72 million tonnes. at the Pandanus West prospect in North said Pajingo gold mine recently completed
The project has been awarded major Queensland.
the transition from contract mining to
project status by the Northern Territory owner mining, a change that was expected
Government and Minemakers is aiming to result in cost savings.
to start production in two years. ANCHOR RESOURCES
The company spent time in the last
quarter of 2008 reﬁning drill targets for
its Chillagoe uranium project in North
Queensland. Managing director Trevor
The company recently secured 100 CLONCURRY METALS
Woolfe said drill rigs were easier to ﬁnd
COPPER STRIKE per cent of the historic Mount Carbine A memorandum of understanding was
because of the ﬁnancial crisis. Anchor
Executive chairman Tom Eadie said tungsten mine and a 14-year mining lease. signed with BHP Billiton in 2008 to
Resources also has gold, tin and tungsten
the next few months would be spent ﬁne- Managing director Dr John Bishop said assess various arrangements to allow for
prospects north-east of Greenvale in
tuning a recently released feasibility study the mine was currently used as an active early development of Cloncurry Metal’s
for Copper Strike’s Einasleigh copper hard rock quarry rich in tungsten and he lead-zinc-silver Pegmont deposit, based
project in North Queensland, to increase believed the company would be producing on the premise of delivering the mined
proﬁtability through a number of factors tungsten from the tailings by Christmas ore to BHP Billiton’s nearby Cannington
that had emerged since the study was 2009. He said some resources were left in plant for processing.
begun. the open pit and exploration drilling was Following due diligence, a close-
One of these factors is continued strong expected to extend these resources. spaced drilling program was begun at the
drilling results from the project’s Kaiser prospect in late 2008. Company secretary
Bill prospect, which was not originally CARPENTARIA EXPLORATION Barry Casson said the results were
included the study’s scope. Mr Eadie said Executive chairman Nick Sheard said expected to give essential information on
signiﬁcant increases in tonnage and grade the company was focusing on bringing a the continuity and grade distribution of
were expected at Kaiser Bill, which would project to production as soon as possible. ENERGY METALS the mineralisation, allowing for the design
allow for increases in the production rate One possibility that the company is A feasibility study is due to kick oﬀ in of a resource deﬁnition drilling program
and mine life of Einasleigh and allow for a exploring is a coal project at Hughenden early 2009 for the Bigrlyi joint venture planned to begin in 2009.
8 ADVERTISEMENT December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
RECYCLING PROFIT - BIT BY BIT
If your father ever said, steels keep getting straight-
‘look after your pennies ened until the threads are
and the pounds will look unusable. We get about 60 a
after themselves,’ he may week done out there.”
well have been a drill bit Mines could be saving
sharpener. hundreds of thousands
There are a lot of pennies of dollars a month in new
in $200,000. That’s what NT product by refurbishment
Rockdrill Services Direc- said Mr Pache, who noted it
tor Chris Pache estimates was a misconception that
is lying discarded in some you can’t get a refurbished
waste heaps on mines sites bit to drill as good as a new.
in northern Australia. It was all in the preparation
Drill bit sharpening is one “For the ﬁrst little while “We have a set-up there he said.
of those niche services that we were doing it hard like where we can do ev- “It is all money saving. Some
are indicative of a com- everyone does trying to get erything on (the Argyle mines at the moment drill
munity ‘arriving’ as a mines a business up and running Diamond) site for them; to destruction. The rod
service and supply centre. and working at the same straighten steel, sharpen bends, throw it in the bin. A Chris and Elwyn Pache – Owners NT Rockdrill Services note
Chris and his partner Elwyn time, “Mr Pache said. “That bits and basically look after bit; drill it until it is dead. that hundreds of thousands of dollars in drill bits which could
ﬁrst eyed off Darwin as a has changed now. We are all the inventory on the “The advantage for mine be recycled are lying in mine dumps.
location for their business now in the position where drilling side of things,” he sites to sharpen bits is they
in 1997. But the conditions we can work for ourselves said. can have a 45mm boring of gear sitting there doing Mr Pache is a second
needed to improve; mean- and it is going quite well.” “It is a good measure for bit, sharpen it a few times nothing and it’s going to go generation bit sharpener.
ing the gold price had to NT Rockdrill Services counts your larger mine sites. We … until it is under gauge in the bin. He did his apprenticeship
increase from where it was Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond vary and (one day) will and goes down to a 43mm “It may cost you $2,000 in with his father in Mount Isa
ﬂatlining at around US$270/ Mine as one of its major do up to 130 bits per day bit. Now, they can use it for freight to send it; $10,000 in the early 90s and worked
ounce and there needed to customers and the business with one machine and one bolting. They get ﬁve times to ﬁx and there you go. with his uncle in Perth who
be a lot more exploration. has permanent presence on person on site. the use instead of drilling There’s 12 grand and you’ve owns Rockdrill Sharpening
The Territory now meets site, with services housed in “The next day we’ll straight- it, killing it and throwing it got $200,000 worth of gear
Services before setting up
those conditions and the a container. en steels, whether it is 4.3 away. that can be re-used. It takes
operations in the Top End.
business has taken off for The mobile and compact borer or down to 2.7 chemi- “We have seen a lot of throwing ﬁgures around a
the Paches in the last 30 set-up is being used as a cal rod. As long as the bend companies with big piles of lot of the time for com- Now NT Rockdrill Services
months since setting up the template for future sites, Mr is not too great, it comes bits lying around …. There panies to see exactly how is looking to expand its op-
Yarrawonga operation. Pache said. back to us, a lot of the time (can be) $200,000 worth much they can save.” erations into other states.
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10 ADVERTISEMENT December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
COLLEGE UNVEILS PLANS FOR THE FUTURE
The Australian Technical College –
North Queensland has unveiled details
Zac Green named 2008
of its plans to expand operations in
Apprentice of the Year
Chief Executive Ofﬁcer Roslyn Baker Boilermaking apprentice Zachary Green was named the 2008
presented the new business plan to ATCNQ Apprentice of the Year at the College’s recent awards
supporters of the College at a special evening.
launch evening. The year 12 student received the honour over 17 other top
The launch comes one week after the apprentices who were named the best in their respective trade
Federal Government gave the ﬁnal areas.
approval for the College to run inde-
Zac, 17, was recognised for his skill in his chosen trade, attitude
pendently when funding for Technical
to his work and positive feedback from his employer Murphy
Colleges expires at the end of 2009.
Ms Baker said the College was
extremely excited about moving forward “Our research has shown that there complete their senior schooling and are undertaking a school-based ap- Chief Executive Ofﬁcer Roslyn Baker said the ATCNQ Awards
with the business plan and providing are often a number of issues that arise still get competencies signed off for prenticeship under the trade training in was an opportunity for the College community to look back at
more opportunities for young people in when students transition into full-time their trades. schools initiative,” she said the year that was, and acknowledge the quality of its apprentices.
the region. employment, so we have support “It’s something that’s never been “Over the two years, they will be able to “Our apprentices show some great skill and knowledge in
“Our vision has always been to become systems in place to ensure that the achieved before, and we’re in the fortu- complete up to 30 per cent of their trade their chosen trades, and this is our chance to recognise their
the leader in ﬂexible and innovative transition period is as smooth as pos- nate position that we can deliver such a competencies before transitioning into outstanding work,” she said. “It also gives the entire College
learning and this new model will put sible for both the apprentice and their rich and authentic learning experience community the opportunity to reﬂect on the success we’ve
a full-time apprenticeship.
us in a position where we can provide employers.” for our students.” “We’ll also undertake the training for experienced throughout the year.”
North Queensland with more training Ms Baker said the College would also
The future will also see the College full-time apprentices who have already
opportunities than ever before,” she be making dramatic changes to the way Other trade excellence award winners on the gala evening were as follows:
branch into remote areas, providing commenced their apprenticeship
said. it trains its school-based apprentices • Boilermaking Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Zac Green
training for students who may not through another RTO.
Amongst the biggest changes in the next year and beyond. • Boilermaking Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Clinton Bowen
otherwise get the opportunity.
College model for 2009 will be the “Of course, one of our biggest goals “In the future there will also be the op- • Fitting & Turning Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): David Lane
offering of third year trade training for “There are so many young people out portunity for those full-time apprentices • Fitting & Turning Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Shaun Silver
is still to get students completing their
its current year 12 apprentices. there that don’t have the same opportu- to study at the College part-time in • Carpentry Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Daniel Britton
Queensland Certiﬁcate of Education
nities as students in the bigger centres, order to ﬁnish their QCE.
“Employers now have the choice of (QCE) and undertaking trade training at • Carpentry Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Alex Howard & Guy Couchman
so what we’re trying to do is bring the
leaving their apprentices at the College the same time. “We really want to offer students a • Plumbing Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): John Fryer
training to them through E-Learning.
to complete the remainder of their “Students who are completing their range of different options, so that they • Plumbing Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Daniel Bower
qualiﬁcation, rather than switching to “At the end of the day it’s about provid- have the best chance of success in the • Wet Trades Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Wade Layt
QCE with the College will be learning
another Registered Training Organisa- under a completely integrated cur- ing viable career pathways for young future. • Electrotechnology Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Jesse Dalton
tion (RTO),” Ms Baker said. riculum,” she said. people, and boosting the workforce.”
“By training their apprentices with • Electrotechnology Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Tony Patane
“It allows for a bit of continuity in their “In the past, there has been a deﬁnite Ms Baker said students wanting to stay us, employers are choosing a very • Heavy Vehicle Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Bobby Stockham
training. Our trainers here know the ap- split between the traditional school in traditional schools can also beneﬁt industry-focused, ﬂexible program with • Heavy Vehicle Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Julian Langdon
prentices’ history and so they will just subjects and trade training, but with the from the new College model. expert trainers, personal service and • Light Vehicle Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Antonia Hodson
be able to pick up where they left off. new curriculum students will be work- “In 2009 ATCNQ will act at the Super- state-of-the-art facilities. It’s a win-win • Light Vehicle Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Catherine Williams
“This will expand into the fourth year ing on various projects that encompass vising Registered Training Organisation situation for both the employer and the • Panel & Paint Apprentice of the Year (yr 12): Daniel Lynch
training from 2010. all of the subjects they require to for students in secondary school who apprentice.” • Panel & Paint Apprentice of the Year (yr 11): Chantal Jenkins
The Australian Technical College North Queensland
is looking for employers to take on apprentices in
2009. If you are an employer who is interested in
taking advantage of this opportunity please register
your interest now. We will have students ready for an
apprenticeship in 2009 in the following trades.
• Fitting & Turning
• Light Vehicle Automotive
• Heavy Vehicle Automotive
• Spray Painting
Australian Technical College
Register on 1300 665 733
or visit www.atcnq.edu.au
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 PEOPLE 11
2008 CN Barton Medal
Firm grounds for success reduce costs and increase Q: Where do you see your
winner Julie Lovisa. eﬀectiveness. career heading?
I’ve had articles JL: I’m planning on
Photo: Stewart McLean published in two journals, staying on at JCU and
which will be used as a
doing a PhD. After that,
basis to conduct more
tests on reinforcement in I think I will stay in the
practice. It needs to be geotechnical ﬁeld, but
done on a larger scale – I’d like to branch out a
my tests were done on a bit eventually. I’d like to
small scale. work for Coﬀey or Golder
“I think I will stay in the geotechnical field, but
I’d like to branch out a bit eventually”
Q: Why do you believe Associates – one of the big
you were chosen as winner geotechnical companies. It
of the CN Barton medal? also depends on how my
JL: The CN Barton PhD goes.
Medal result was based Q: What was your
on my presentation to the
family’s reaction to your
Townsville-based A fourth-year civil and (with and without do your thesis on reinforced panel - with questions at
environmental engineering prestress) and investigated soil? the end - and the content
James Cook University of my thesis. There were JL: My dad was actually
student, Ms Lovisa’s thesis the eﬀect of moisture on JL: Reinforced soil is
the settlement of ﬁbre- industry representatives shortlisted for the medal’s
( JCU) student Julie examined interaction a fairly new industry, it
reinforced soil. and lecturers on the shortlisting as such when
mechanisms in soil has only really emerged as
Lovisa has been She found the optimal panel with a wide base of he was at JCU.
reinforcements. something you can make
She compared the method to be prestressed money from in the last 30 knowledge, so you really My sister is also coming
named the winner of geotextile reinforcement. through and she might be
eﬀectiveness of random years. have to know what you’re
this year’s CN Barton Ms Lovisa spoke to The talking about. a good chance at it.
reinforcement (ﬁbres We still don’t know a
Mining Advocate about her
mixed into the soil) and lot about the interaction I guess I delivered my My family were really
Medal for her work in studies and the road ahead.
systematic reinforcement mechanisms and if we presentation well - I was excited that I’d won -
geotechnics. using sheets of geotextile Q: Why did you choose to can learn more we can certainly nervous. really proud.
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12 INDUSTRY UPDATE December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Apprentices honoured Follow-up work for Baal Gammon awaiting assay results from about 30 new
holes at the prospect.
North Queensland Metals is planning
further exploration at its Baal Gammon Mt Carlton resource upgrade
North prospect following encouraging
drilling results. Conquest Mining has upgraded 40
per cent of the resources at its Silver
Chief executive oﬃcer John McKinstry Hill prospect in North Queensland to
said drilling targeted the Consolation measured status.
vein system, which includes two main
Managing director John Terpu said
veins containing copper, indium and
the upgraded resource estimate was
silver over an inferred strike length of an appropriate statement of resources
280m. on which to base
He said three feasibility studies.
holes contained CAIRNS He said the total
signiﬁcant Mt Carlton
of sulphide THURSDAY ISLAND incorporating
mineralisation the Silver Hill,
similar to that seen Mt Carlton, Mt
at the nearby Baal TEL: 1300 76 86 96 Carlton-Western
Apprentices Edmund Busch (second from left) and Sorren Owens (fourth from left) celebrate
Gammon deposit. www.BLT.com.au lodes and Herbert
The Baal Gammon
their awards with family, OZ Minerals management and Normanton community members. project is in the
Without a travel agent you’re on your own prospects- are
estimated to be 25
Herberton area, million tonnes at
It was a family aﬀair for two Century Mine apprentices recently when they
west of Cairns. 1.70 grams per tonne gold, 60 grams per
were recognised at the Australian Mining Prospect Awards.
Third-year communications technician trainee Edmund Busch won the tonne silver and 0.28 per cent copper.
Trainee or Apprentice of the Year award, while his nephew - light vehicle Cape Alumina to list on ASX
mechanic apprentice Sorren Owens - was a ﬁnalist in the category. Cape Alumina, owner of the Pisolite Good drill results for Exco
OZ Minerals chief operating oﬃcer Brett Fletcher and Century Mine general Hills bauxite project in Cape York, Exco Resources recently announced
manager John Lamb presented Mr Busch and Mr Owens with their awards at a plans to list on the Australian Securities that ongoing drilling at its E1 North
celebratory barbecue in their home town of Normanton. Exchange by mid December. prospect had led to a 55 per cent
“Edmund winning and Sorren being selected as a ﬁnalist in this category increase in the total resource, which now
The company opened an initial public
is no small feat, as nominees come from all parts of the Australian mining consists of 12.3 million tonnes at one
oﬀer (IPO) recently, with local and
industry,” Mr Lamb said. per cent copper and 0.29g per tonne of
overseas investors having already
committed to more than 60 per cent of
the minimum subscription. Managing director Michael Anderson
said inﬁll drilling had delivered an 87
Chief executive oﬃcer Dr Paul per cent increase in indicated resources
NT attracts Chinese interest which recently went into voluntary
Messenger said IPO proceeds would be
administration. at the prospect.
Three of China’s largest mining used to fast-track a bankable feasibility
He said further resource potential
companies have expressed interest in study, with ﬁrst production from the
exploring in the Northern Territory. CDE Capital wins mining award project of seven million tonnes per
existed on the eastern limb of E1 North
and in the E1 central zone. The E1 camp
Representatives from China Minmetals Darwin-based company CDE Capital annum scheduled for 2012-2013. consists of three deposits 40km north-
Corporation, Zijin Mining and the was named Contract Miner of the Year Cape Alumina is 40 per cent owned by east of Cloncurry.
Jiangxi Nuclear Industry Geological at the recent Australian Mining Prospect Metallica Minerals.
Bureau approached Resources Minister Awards in Sydney.
Kon Vatskalis at the recent Australia- “The award has given CDE Capital
Chillagoe tin project forges ahead
China Mineral Exploration Investment added credibility and strength for Sulphide intersections for CuDeco Republic Gold and Staldor Mining have
Seminar in Beijing. ongoing contract tenders and positive CuDeco has announced further completed an aircore drilling program
According to the Northern Territory exposure within the mining and civil “massive” sulphide intersections at the at the Kangaroo Creek tin project,
Government, the representatives were earthworks industry,” managing director north-west end of its Las Minerale south-west of Chillagoe. Republic Gold
mostly interested in uranium, gold, and Robbie Rusca said.
prospect, part of the Rocklands Group managing director John Kelly said
base metals including nickel, lead, zinc He said CDE Capital had recruited copper project near Cloncurry. drilling had conﬁrmed the potential
and copper. up to 50 per cent of the workforce
One of the companies was also said from local Aboriginal communities on Chairman Wayne McCrae said gold for several million cubic metres of tin-
to have shown interest in taking some projects. About 80 per cent of its and cobalt mineralisation had also been bearing wash. A preliminary geological
over Pine Creek’s GBS Gold project, permanent workforce is indigenous. encountered, and the company was block model is being prepared.
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 INDUSTRY UPDATE 13
Watershed study almost finished president of the Australasian Institute
of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM). New deposits for Ranger
Vital Metals is close to completing He was inducted into the Queensland
a detailed feasibility study of its Engineering Hall of Fame in 2004 and
Watershed scheelite deposit in far was made Honorary Fellow in 2006.
Managing director Andy Haslam Diamond potential near Mount Isa
said the only outstanding items for
completion were ﬁnal pit optimisation, Superior Resources believes it has
some deﬁning ﬂotation tests on ore discovered diamond potential at its
treatment, ﬁnalisation of tailings Elizabeth prospect, part of the Dajarra
storage design and compilation of the project in north-west Queensland.
ﬁnal report. The Managing director
study is based on Service Ken Harvey said
an operation of Trucks the company
450,000 tonnes recently completed
of ore per annum a gravity survey
to produce about over the prospect,
1800 tonnes per which showed a
annum of tungsten pronounced gravity
concentrates low over a circular
containing 118,000 feature at the
metric tonne units northern end.
of wolframite in
www.equipmentplacement.com.au He said this Ranger uranium mine in the Northern Territory.
the ﬁrst stage, over feature – possibly
a six year mine life. a diatreme - could Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) says drilling at its Ranger 3 Deeps area
Mr Haslam said the potential to extend have potential for diamonds and would – part of the Ranger uranium operation in the Northern Territory - has deﬁned
the mine life well past 10 years was be targeted for drilling in 2009. a signiﬁcant extension to mineralisation to the north of earlier intersections and
excellent, with the current mine plan Superior Resources has been exploring at a shallower depth. ERA has deﬁned an exploration mineralisation target in
involving extraction of less than 20 per the Elizabeth prospect for copper- the range of 15 million to 20 million tonnes, potentially containing 30,000 to
cent of the established global resource. lead-zinc deposits of the Mount Isa 40,000 tonnes of uranium oxide.
He said Vital Metals was cash style following the discovery of strong The Ranger 3 Deeps area is located adjacent to the current Ranger 3 operating
restrained and looking to raise some anomalies in the area in the second half pit in an easterly direction. ERA is continuing to drill this target area in order
interim funding in the near future. of 2007. to develop suﬃcient data for a mineral resource statement.
The company is holding discussions Mr Harvey said that if the diamond Exploration has been focused on deﬁning the potential for an extension to the
with potential overseas investors. potential of the Dajarra tenements was current open-cut pit or the possible establishment of underground mining.
realised, the company would consider
Sir Bruce Watson remembered funding options for a major diamond
Former Mount Isa Mines (MIM) chief Queensland Minerals chief executive All mining and milling activities at
Sir Bruce Watson died in Brisbane Mr Harvey said exploration for base
oﬃcer James A Crombie said the GBS Gold Australia’s Union Reefs
recently, aged 80. metals would continue, as the presence
company would prepare a program of operations centre in the Northern
of possible volcanic diatremes would not
Sir Bruce, a Queensland-born and reverse circulation and deeper diamond Territory have been suspended and
aﬀect this work.
educated electrical engineer, started drilling to evaluate the system at the sites have been placed on care and
his career at the Hydro-electricity shallow to moderate depths.
New Queensland Minerals targets maintenance pending the outcome of
Commission in Tasmania before joining the administration process.
MIM’s Copper Reﬁneries in Townsville Queensland Minerals recently Firms eye GBS Gold assets
in 1956. announced that major drill targets had
He was appointed managing director of been indicated by geophysical surveys
More than 30 expressions of interest Territory Uranium on target
have been received for the various
MIM Holdings in 1980, chief executive at its Dingo Peak copper-gold porphyry Territory Uranium recently announced
businesses and assets of GBS Gold’s
oﬃcer in 1981, and chairman in 1983 discovery. that results from a ground gravity
Australian subsidiaries, currently in
following Sir James Foots’ retirement. The prospect is located near Chillagoe voluntary administration. Separate survey at its Tennant Creek project
He was knighted in 1985 in recognition and is in a 150km-long porphyry belt information memoranda and data had identiﬁed a number of iron oxide-
of his distinguished service to enclosed by the Palmerville fault system. DVDs are being circulated for the copper-gold type targets for follow up
Queensland industry. Kagara is developing a concentrator to Union Reefs operations centre, Tom’s drilling. It plans to continue reﬁning
Sir Bruce was a notable member of treat similar mineralisation 35km from Gully project and Nicolsons’ project, geological and geophysical models
Engineers Australia and a national Dingo Peak. with the deadline for submission of towards the deﬁnition of future drilling-
indicative oﬀers set for December 5. based exploration activities.
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14 INDUSTRY UPDATE December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
World-ﬁrst retroﬁt at Callide Mr Vatskalis outlined the success of
those Chinese companies already in
potential at Kurundi further enhanced
the prospectivity of Northern Uranium’s
joint ventures with Northern Territory 100 per cent-owned exploration licences
mines including the CITIC and Legend at Epenarra, situated to the north-east.
International. Northern Uranium has also expanded
As part of his ministerial visit, Mr its phosphate interests in the Amadeus
Vatskalis was joined by representatives Basin through ﬁve new applications
from the NT Resources Council, for exploration licences over an area of
Clayton Utz, Energy Metals, Emmerson 450sq km near Alice Springs.
Resources, Territory Uranium, and
TNG to promote mineral exploration Drilling initiatives bear fruit
Mr Vatskalis said
the government’s Water
grants to assist
Strategy aimed to
create conﬁdence programs since
in the Territory the second round
by showcasing of a collaborative
the government’s drilling initiative
commitment to began mid-year.
Japanese Vice Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Yoshifumi Matsumura, visits the
opening doors for www.equipmentplacement.com.au According to
Callide A power station, set to switch on oxyfuel technology. the government,
Work has started at a Queensland coal-ﬁred power station for a world-ﬁrst drilling program near Charters Towers
demonstration of innovative bolt-on technology for reducing emissions. The Seeking new projects
has led to the discovery of a signiﬁcant
$206 million Callide oxyfuel project involves retroﬁtting CS Energy’s Callide A China Yunnan Copper Australia is mineralised intersection close to the
power station near Biloela. seeking advanced new projects to Brilliant West structure.
The oxyfuel technology will burn coal in a mixture of oxygen and re-circulated complement its greenﬁelds projects in
Results from Auzex Resources’
ﬂue gases, which will create a highly concentrated stream of carbon dioxide North Queensland.
Khartoum drilling program north of
suitable for capture and storage deep underground. The company has copper and gold Mount Garnet have indicated pipe-
The project involves CS Energy, the Australian Coal Association, Xstrata targets at Cloncurry and Mount Isa, like bodies with economic tin grades
Coal, Schlumberger, JPower, Mitsui & Co and IHI Corporation. It has received and gold targets at Pentland and extending to at least 100m deep, which
funding from the Queensland, Australian and Japanese governments. Ravenswood. could lead to a signiﬁcant new tin
Managing director Jason Beckton said discovery. Renison Consolidated Mines
the company was focused on exploring has found that the structure and gold
its tenements in Queensland but was mineralisation of the Agate Creek
Redbank funding package Redbank acquired the project in 2005 actively evaluating other acquisitions fault – part of the company’s Friar Tuck
and is currently treating high-grade and joint venture opportunities to grow prospect east of Georgetown - was
Redbank Mines has secured a $6 million oxide stockpiles through vat leaching its business rapidly. signiﬁcant and continuous.
funding package to underpin continued to produce a high-grade, high-quality
development of its high-grade Redbank
copper project in the Northern Territory.
concentrate in a form known as copper Progress at Kurundi
The funding will be provided in Northern Uranium has received Students’ enthusiasm rewarded
A 2007 pre-feasibility study conﬁrmed positive results from the ﬁrst stage of
stages through an agreement with the technical and economic viability of Two senior students from Kirwan
Crawley Investments, the private reconnaissance phosphate exploration State High School in Townsville were
developing a series of oxide deposits, activity at the Kurundi project in the
investment vehicle of Australian mining recently recognised for their enthusiasm
to be followed by mining of deeper Northern Territory.
entrepreneur Michael Kiernan. towards the resources sector by the
sulphide ore bodies.
Redbank Mines said the package would Executive chairman Kevin Schultz said Queensland Minerals and Energy
signiﬁcantly enhance its ﬁnancial targets for drilling in 2009 at Kurundi Academy (QMEA).
position, de-risk its balance sheet
NT maintains focus on China - which is being explored in a joint Jessie Pastorello and Glen Stillaway
and enable it to complete a deﬁnitive Northern Territory Resources Minister venture with Washington Resources each received a Right Direction
feasibility study on development of the Kon Vatskalis recently delivered a - were being deﬁned by geological student award, which recognised their
oxide copper deposits at its Redbank keynote address on behalf of Australia interpretation and the results of surface involvement, interest and participation
project, ramping up to 6000 tonnes per at the China Mining Congress in sampling. in minerals and energy activities. The
annum over two years. Beijing. He said conﬁrmation of phosphate awards included cash prizes of $500.
2009 Xstrata Mount Isa Mining Expo
24, 25 & 26 March 2009
Xstrata Entertainment Centre - Buchanan Park, Mount Isa QLD
Exhibition Sites are now on sale for the
2009 Xstrata Mount Isa Mining Expo
Register now to promote your product in one of the richest mineral provinces in the world.
Home to several of the world's largest mining conglomerates and international
mining organisations. than 64% of sites already
mining organisations. More Nearly 70% of sites sold!!! sold.
Showcasing the latest in mining tools, trades and technologies over three whole days
For further information contact
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I 76-78 Camooweal St, Mount Isa, QLD, 4825 I PO Box 1705 I Phone: 4743 9881 I
or jump onto the website at www.michamber.com.au
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 INDUSTRY UPDATE 15
Education needed for landowners Railway, the Darwin City Waterfront
redevelopment, Blacktip gas project, Critical medical know-how
The North Queensland Miners Alcan Gove, Bradshaw Training Area
Association (NQMA) has called on and the Gemco tailings storage facility
the Queensland Government to better on Groote Eylandt.
educate landowners about their legal
obligations in relation to land access for Changes to Queensland legislation
President Ralph De Lacey said miners The Workplace Health and Safety
also needed to be better informed about and Other Legislation Amendment
landowner rights and the NQMA Act 2008 will take eﬀect on January
would facilitate negotiations between 1, 2009 in order to further harmonise
both sides if Queensland’s
requested. legislation with
“It is not in our
interests to fall According to
out with the Commerce
landholders - we Queensland, the
need their co- most signiﬁcant
operation, and the change allows
sensible explorer for workplace
should bend over health and safety Ash Ware practises his skills on fellow ERT member Owen Ferguson.
backwards to representatives to
establish good issue provisional Nine members of the emergency response team (ERT) at Xstrata Copper’s
relations with improvement Ernest Henry mine recently undertook intense training in pre-hospital care.
those who have notices to their The 11-day course gave participants skills such as how to diagnose injuries,
other rights to land use,” he said. employer in situations where there is a apply intravenous lines, maintain a patient’s airways and administer basic drugs.
risk of injury or exposure to illness in a Ernest Henry site nurse Yvonne Goldsworthy said the pre-course study and
The State Government recently set up workplace. The provisional improvement
a Land Access Taskforce of peak rural training regime was time consuming because the actions taken in the ﬁrst half
notices will require the employer to hour after serious trauma could be crucial to a patient’s outcome.
and resources industry remedy the contravention or likely ERT member Rob Tree – a mechanical ﬁtter at Ernest Henry – said the most
bodies to look into the concerns contravention of the Act.
challenging part of the training was adjusting to a very low margin for error.
regarding access to farming land for These notices can be challenged and
exploration and mining. “With many other things you do in life you can move between parameters, but
a second opinion sought from an you just can’t with this - you’re dealing with peoples’ lives,” he said.
It includes AgForce, the Queensland inspector in the event of any dispute. The ERT members achieved Certiﬁcate IV qualiﬁcations as medical
Farmers Federation, the Australian
technicians after being assessed as competent.
Petroleum Production and Exploration North-west power review
Association and the Queensland
Resources Council. The Queensland Resources Council
(QRC) has praised the State
Government’s commissioning of an range of uses and could be delivered would be opened up to explorers.
independent review of energy supplies with very low or no greenhouse
Macmahon wins Darwin contract Nine separate areas will be released in
to north-west Queensland. emissions.
three stages next year on February 15,
Macmahon Holdings has been awarded QRC chief executive Michael Roche Mr Vatskalis said the main value of the March 29 and June 14.
the contract for Stage Two of the Tiger said the review by consultant Rod Sims hot rocks energy to Australia was in the
Brennan Drive extension project in would bring a fresh perspective to the generation of electricity, where it has the
Darwin. commercial complexities surrounding capacity to provide base-load power. Nicole at the helm
The $89 million project includes the reliable and competitively-priced energy The Bill will be debated in Parliament The Queensland Resources Council has
design and construction of 7.5km supplies to the region. in early 2009. elected a new president.
of road works, including a four-lane Nicole Hollows, chief executive oﬃcer
dual highway from Berrimah Road Territory looking to hot rocks Queensland land release and managing director of Macarthur
to the Stuart Highway and a grade A Geothermal Energy Bill to facilitate Land in the North West Minerals Coal, has taken over from outgoing
separated interchange with provision for and regulate the exploration and Province has been released for president John Pegler, who led the
pedestrians. extraction of geothermal energy in the exploration by the Queensland organisation from 2004.
Macmahon has operated in the Northern Territory has been introduced Government. Ms Hollows has spent 16 years in the
Northern Territory for more than to Parliament. resources industry including roles as
Mines and Energy Minister Geoﬀ
42 years and major projects have Resources Minister Kon Vatskalis said Wilson said over 3600sq km of land company secretary and chief ﬁnancial
included the Alice Springs to Darwin the natural heat energy had a wide near Croydon, north-east of Mount Isa, oﬃcer at Australian Premium Coals.
MOVING FORWARD. Mt Isa Townsville
CALL 131 228
A solid partner in the North Queensland and
Northern Territory quarry industry.
16 BETWEEN SHIFTS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
CN Barton Medal Presentation PHOTOS: Stewart McLean
James Cook University, Townsville
Larissa Daveson and Gavin
Spanner with Sarah Mobbs
(Townsville City Council) and
fellow engineering student
Angela Quantrill with her partner, fourth-year engineering
student Marc Dickenson.
Lui Vedelago and Neil Meadows (both from BHP Billiton Yabulu). Ling Yin (JCU School of Engineering), CN Barton Medal winner Julie Ron Smith and Noel Lovisa (Code Valley) with Peter Graban (JCU
Lovisa and her mother Bernadette Lovisa. School of Engineering).
Damien Watson (TP Human Capital), third-year engineering student Max Burns and Clayton Cook Siva Kugan (JCU School of Engineering), Daniel Hansen (LCJ Engineers) and Sallyanne Brooke-Taylor
(TP Human Capital). (Golder Associates).
• Boiler & Pressure Vessel
Fabrication & In service
• Storage Equipment & Tank
• Visual Inspection & Prompt Services available across
Engineering Surveys Queensland?
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Engineers Website - www.assetinspection.com.au
• Crane Inspections Crane Safe With a fast and flexible approach a high level of
Assessments (Endorsed service to meet your critical time lines.
• Structural inspections ISO 9001 quality certified covering the
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• Assessment, Inspection and inspection management, including
Management & Risk Directed verifying and certifying equipment
Integrity Management compliance to statutory and legislative
RBI/RBA requirements in accordance with
• Quality Assurance & Control
• Surveillance & Mid life surveys
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 BETWEEN SHIFTS 17
Purchasing officers dinner PHOTOS: Romy Siegmann
Fetta’s Greek Taverna, Cairns
Arthur Davie (Global Welding
Supplies), Justin Malaponte
(NQ Crash and 4WD Spares),
Brendon Wylie (Australasian
Drilling Institute) and Lyndon
Neil Mac Isaac and Toby Sciacca (both from Choice Finance
Sharon Dawson (Dawsons Engineering) and Tyler Scott (from Gayleen Toll and Leslie Lofthouse (both from Precruitment). Julian Morrison (Novotel) and Judy Lloyd (Cairns Chamber of
Xstrata Copper). Commerce).
Dr Darren Delaney (The Pier Medical Centre) with Ann Delaney and Nancy Delaney. Peter Hall (Northern Chemicals), Karen Ross-Farren (BHP Billiton) and Peter Anderson (Events NQ).
18 BETWEEN SHIFTS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Chemtrans Christmas party PHOTOS: Stewart McLean
A Touch of Salt, Townsville
Michelle Christian and
husband Scott (Chemtrans)
with Matt Harrison
Julie Bowden and husband Robert (Incitec Pivot).
Darren Sorah (Chemtrans) and wife Carolyn. Doug Forsyth, Peter Gauci and Andrew Behm (all from Chemtrans). Robyn Needham and husband Dave (Chemtrans).
Robert Hilton (Chemtrans) and wife Debbie with Mark Pope (Chemtrans). Kathy Weismann, left, and Diane Hall, right, with Burt Hinkley (Chemtrans).
Serving the mining industry of North Queensland for over 20 years.
• Heavy Engineering • Cairns
• Maintenance • Townsville
Cairns 07 4055 1900
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 BETWEEN SHIFTS 19
Mine Christmas celebrations
Cannington mine, Ernest Henry mine and ERA events
Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) - Greg and Wendy Sinclair. BHP Billiton Cannington Mine - Mel Smith and James Dunshea. Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine - Joe Laucirica and Michael Todd
BHP Billiton Cannington Mine - Paul and Isa Marrinan. Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine - Mike Webster and Dave Carter. Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine - Andy Chalker and Stephen Hallam
Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine - Di Hutley and Jodie Kuskopf. Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) - Liz Sarneckis and Alex BHP Billiton Cannington Mine - Amy and Andrew Cooper.
BHP Billiton Cannington Mine - Heather Hanks and Clinton Russell. Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine - Kev Cowie, Bob Tree, Paul Vaughan, BHP Billiton Cannington Mine - Lorell and Greg Gelly.
John Twomey and Guni Liepins.
Townsville Mount Isa -17 returns weekly Taking care
Cairns Mount Isa - 6 returns weekly of Queensland
Book online w w w. m a c a i r. c o m . a u
20 LIFESTYLE December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Miners kick up their heels
Three giants of the northern Australian mining industry threw Christmas parties
to match their size recently.
Xstrata Copper Ernest Henry Mine had workers wedding reception.
rocking around the Christmas tree at its on-site Cannington also planned to hold
village this year, with Aussie legend Jon English a children’s party on The Strand in
headlining the entertainment at two of its four staﬀ Townsville, featuring a full drum circle,
Christmas parties. face painting, a balloon artist, a jumping
Ernest Henry increased the number of parties castle and Santa with pressies.
it held this Yuletide because of the new roster it Energy Resources of Australia’s (ERA’s)
adopted during the year. All employees were given Darwin-based corporate and technical staﬀ ﬀ
the chance of attending a party regardless of their gathered with ﬂy in-ﬂy out employees at thehe
shifts. Partners, mine stakeholders and Cloncurry SkyCity Casino on November 28 to celebrate rate
community members were also invited to attend the the end of their busy year.
four parties. A Roaring Twenties theme proved a hit, ,
A seafood buﬀet proved ever popular and Santa r
with staﬀ going all out in their best ﬂapper
visited the parties to hand out lollies to the kids. and gangster get-ups.
The Cloncurry Girl Guides served fairy ﬂoss ERA employees and their
as part of their fundraising eﬀorts and raﬄes guests were entertained by Above: Claire
raised about $300 at each party for “Movember” the Bob Marshall jazz band Burke and
(beneﬁtting men’s health organisations). and dined on a Christmas Nic Morgan
BHP Billiton Cannington Mine held two buﬀet. embrace the
parties at Jupiters Townsville, attracting about 590 Chief executive Rob Roaring Twenties
attendees. Atkinson thanked theme of ERA’s
Entertainment was provided by ﬁve-piece band all workers for their Christmas party.
Abbey Road and the food was a Christmas-style contribution to the
buﬀet. company’s achievements
One of the highlights of the second party was in 2008 and asked staﬀ to
the fact that by attending the event, long-serving continue to work safely in
underground miner Mark Irons and his wife 2009.
Karen were able to celebrate their 21st wedding
anniversary in the same room as they had their Left: Ernest Henry
mine village chef
helps prepare a
feast for guests.
Christmas on the job
Plans have been put in place to ensure that miners working on
Christmas Day can still enjoy the occasion.
Ernest Henry mine is spicing up breakfast at the village with
non-alcoholic eggnog and Christmas dinner will consist of
ham, turk coral trout, prawns and oysters.
Christmas Day falls on a crew changeover day at
Cannington mine this year and workers at the start of their
roster are ﬂying in later than usual so that they are able to
spend some of the day with their families.
The workers coming oﬀ site will ﬂy out early so that they
can spend Christmas afternoon at home.
F those on site on Christmas night, the operation is
planning a big Christmas dinner in the mess hall with
decorations, roasts and everything else festive.
Dancing up a
storm at the
Ernest Henry Jon English got the Ernest Henry
Christmas party. village rocking with Sydney-based
band Jonah’s Road.
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 BIGGER, TOUGHER, BETTER 21
Globalstar Inc SPOT Messenger
This hand-held personal tracking device is a potential life saver for
outdoor adventurers and has already been linked to a number of
rescues. The Pivotel Group, which recently sealed a deal to sell the
SPOT Messenger in Australia, believes it will also be embraced by
businesses to safeguard staff operating in remote areas. SPOT has
four distinct functions that can be executed through the push of a
button - a locator, an emergency function, a help function and a
tracking function that can be followed through Google maps. with DVD
Terrain Tamer has introduced
a new DVD with the snatch
straps it sells featuring clear
Xray Vision driving lights demonstrations from 4WD
The Xray Vision range of driving lights experts on the product’s
consists of three models – 160mm, 200mm
n correct use. The move follows
an 220mm - each available in quartz
and the Queensland Government’s
halogen or state-of-the-art Xenon recent introduction of a
HID (high intensity discharge). Top new mandatory safety
of the range performance-wise is standard for the suppliers of
the 220 Series HID pencil beam - recovery or snatch straps following two fatal incidents caused by
shining 1100m (at 1Lux). Australian the uncontrolled release of such devices. Terrain Tamer’s snatch
distributor Britax Automotive straps are Australian made, with 20 per cent stretch, in-built wear
Equipment says all models have their indicators and a reusable bag.
own unique features including LED
position rings (200s) and LED position
plates (220s), a chrome body option on
the 200s and coloured or chrome rims
on the 220s.
Blue Tongue compressor
This US-built compressor can be hard-wired into
vehicles and promises to inflate tyres quickly.
Distributor Opposite Lock says the high-quality,
fan-cooled machine can inflate 10 tyres in rapid
succession without getting hot.
Black Widow storage systems
Well-organised storage can reduce roadside hassles and
Black Widow provides a wide variety of options. Their range
includes twin drawer systems, low-slide and single-drawer
Old Man Emu suspension combinations with optional second tier drawers, cargo
barriers, fridge slides, add-on tables and top shelves. The
for LandCruiser 200 Series company says the bottoms of Black Widow drawers are
cross-pressed so they will not sag under heavy loads.
ARB’s specialised Old Man Emu engineering team has
released new integrated suspension systems and GVM
(gross vehicle mass) upgrades for the Toyota LandCruiser
200 Series. ARB says the team has developed an extensive
range of front and rear coils using new steel materials that
offer greater resistance to sagging and corrosion, while
maintaining performance and durability.
TJM bull bar for the
A new TJM Type 15 alloy deluxe bull
bar has been released for the Holden
Mitsubishi Triton Fastback utility
Colorado. Features include raised
Mitsubishi Motors Australia recently unveiled a new variant to
centre section, heavy duty aerial
its Triton utility range – the Triton Fastback. The vehicle features
tabs and polycarbonate indicator/park
futuristic sports-style bars, a durable hard tonneau cover, unique
assemblies. The design accommodates large
front bumper protector and 17-inch alloy wheels. The interior boasts
driving lights and the winch frame caters for a
luxury appointments including leather seat trim, steering wheel cover
wide variety of recovery winches. The bull bar is airbag
and gearshift and transfer lever, an electric sunroof and automatic
compatible and will not void new vehicle warranties.
climate control airconditioning. The Triton Fastback is powered by a
3.2-litre intercooled and turbo-charged diesel engine and comes with
Mitsubishi’s Super Select four-wheel drive system.
22 ENGINEERING ACHIEVEMENT December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Helping hand for island artists
The remote location of
The logistical expertise of Engineers Without the building site presented
Borders volunteers was put to the test challenges to the team.
Supplies were barged to the
recently in an unusual infrastructure project. island from Karumba after being
freighted from Brisbane. The
A group of engineers has helped EWB project team travelled
make life easier for indigenous from Brisbane to Cairns. Some
artists striving to maintain a chartered a ﬂight direct to
close connection with their Bentinck Island - 670km away,
traditional homeland in the Gulf while others ﬂew to Mornington
of Carpentaria. Island and made a three-hour
The Kaiadilt people were trip to Bentinck by boat.
forced to leave Bentinck Island “If you’ve forgotten something
after severe drought and tidal you can’t just go to the store and
waves in the 1940s, relocating pick it up. You have to be careful Engineers Without Borders volunteer Alex Dalrymple helps Bentinck Island
to the mission community on in your planning,” Ms Skinner resident Geoffrey Loogatha fix his spear.
nearby Mornington Island. said.
But a 15 to 20-strong group EWB is currently working with the Kooma Traditional management initiative with the
- mostly women - has returned on a renewable energy and Owners Association in south- Gapuwiyak community in the
to live on the island and a waterway health project west Queensland and a lake Northern Territory.
number are drawing on their
ancestral ties to that land as
State’s ﬁnest recognised
Rocks at Main Base 2008 by
part of a blossoming Kaiadilt art
Bentinck Island artist
Now, Engineers Without
Loogatha. Image: courtesy the artist,
Borders (EWB) Australia has
Mornington Island Arts and Craft and High achievers from the He has been a very active
stepped in to help upgrade
Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne. State’s north and north-west member of the community,
facilities for the remote
made a strong showing at serving on numerous boards, and
community in a challenging and making a scoping trip to the the Queensland Division of was awarded a Centenary Medal
project completed recently. island before their recent two-
EWB programs co-ordinator Engineers Australia’s Hawken for Community Service.
week construction eﬀort. Address Awards Dinner for The Eric Brier Memorial
- indigenous Australia, Lizzy “The construction work
Skinner, said the team had 2008. Award is awarded annually to
involved a team of Kaiadilt Among this year’s inductees an Engineers Australia member
completed an amenities block
people, some of the (EWB) to the Queensland Engineering who has made a signiﬁcant
including two composting
volunteers and CAT,” Ms Hall of Fame was Mount Isa contribution to advancing the
toilets, two showers and an
Skinner said. mining heavyweight Julius public status of the profession of
open-space living and kitchen
She said 10 EWB volunteers Kruttschnitt, while Ingham- engineering, particularly in the
had contributed to the project in based Bill Pickering was named ﬁeld of sustainable development.
The facilities, adjoining
total, including student engineers Engineering Technologist of the This year’s recipient, Don
existing living quarters, would
who acted as construction Year and Cairns businessman Fry, is owner and chairman of
improve conditions for family Bill Pickering
and friends wishing to visit the manager, project engineer and Don Fry took out the Eric Brier Cairns-based engineering ﬁrm
women on the island as well as civil engineer. Memorial Award. AIMTEK, which has trained
for people employed to perform The students’ mentors The awards dinner and address about 1000 apprentices and
Professor Mat Darveniza
maintenance work there, she for the job included a civil was hosted in Brisbane by provided more than 40 million
engineer from Arup, a building and Sir Charles Barton (1907
said. the Queensland President of hours of direct employment in
foreman from the Queensland – 1986) were also inducted into
“The Centre for Appropriate Engineers Australia, Michael the North Queensland region.
University of Technology and the Hall of Fame this year.
Technology (CAT) had been Ganza. In 2006, he received the
a construction manager from Hall of Fame inductee Julius The 2008 Queensland
working with Bentinck Island Innovation Hero Award
Baulderstone Hornibrook. Kruttschnitt (1885 – 1974) Engineering Technologist of from the Sydney University’s
for a number of years and they
Ms Skinner said an interesting helped lay the foundations for the Year, Bill Pickering, was also Warren Centre for Advanced
identiﬁed the project, with the
community, as a priority,” Ms aspect of the exercise was the the powerful Mount Isa mining recently named as Australian Engineering.
Skinner said. way it had recycled old materials industry of today. Engineering Technologist The two other Queensland
“They realised they needed – such as steel and toilets - As newly appointed general of the Year at the Australian engineers honoured on the night
some engineering advice, so they which had been left on the island manager of Mount Isa Mines Engineering Excellence Awards were Alan Keith McLennan,
came to us to help them with the from previous, uncompleted Limited in the 1930s, he was in Canberra. named 2008 Queensland
project.” projects. responsible for returning a Mr Pickering started work as Professional Engineer of the
EWB began the project in These reclaimed materials mining venture headed for an apprentice electrician in 1950 Year, and Malcolm Mathie,
May, with a Brisbane-based accounted for more than 95 per ﬁnancial loss and foreclosure to and has developed a long and named 2008 Queensland
team carrying out design work cent of the construction. proﬁt. distinguished career. Engineering Oﬃcer of the Year.
Some of our training includes:
• Apprenticeships and traineeships within the building and
construction industry including civil work;
• Training in machine operation including: Forklifts, Front-End
Loaders, Scrapers, Bobcats, Graders, Rollers;
• Prescribed occupations such as Scaffolding, Dogging, Rigging
and Crane Operation;
• Occupational Health and Safety training including: Workplace
CSTC Pty Ltd Health and Safety Officer, Safety Representative, Safety
is a Queensland company Committee, Confined Space Safety, First Aid, Manual Handling,
Safe Work at Heights and many other programs specifically
and an accredited Registered designed for these clients.
Training Organization (RTO).
Our training centres are equipped with plant and
We were established in 1994 equipment which supports our hands-on
and have trained over 80,000 approach to training. Courses are adaptable
and flexible, and can be tailored to suit student
students across a broad or employer's needs.
spectrum of construction All staff employed by the CSTC has industry
related fields. background and have been training in these areas for
many years and attend regular staff training updates.
Rockhampton 4921 1751 Townsville 4774 8828
Cairns 4041 5120 Brisbane 3373 8888
The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 ENGINEERING ACHIEVEMENT 23
Putting the Technologist stands tall
out in accordance with design
documents. In addition to his
team ﬁrst business activity, Mr Chappell
holds positions as the Northern
Division’s representative on
Engineers Australia’s Electrical
College Board and National
Committee of Engineering
Engineers Australia has devoted 2008 to Technologists.
advancing the recognition and involvement His achievements saw him
named Engineering Technologist
of the industry’s technologists and associates. of the Year at the 2008 Engineers
Australia Northern Division
The past year has been all about Engineering Excellence Awards.
knocking down barriers for Born and educated in Sydney,
Engineers Australia head Peter Mr Chappell began his working
Godfrey. life as an electrical draftsman
The organisation’s new with the city’s water board. After
national president has been a number of jobs he joined the
leading a taskforce that set out engineering consultancy Kuttner
to tackle a raft of issues as part Collins in Melbourne, where he
of Engineers Australia’s “Year of says he was oﬀered the chance to
the Engineering Team”. step across into the engineering
Their work has highlighted the side of the business.
roles of engineering technologist Mr Chappell started visiting
and associates, as well as setting the Territory in the early 1980s
organisational changes in motion in his work with Kuttner Collins.
to improve the value those “Then, in 1987, I moved up
occupational groups get out of here with Meinhardt,” he said.
Engineers Australia membership. Peter Godfrey “I became a director of
“We want to knock down Engineers Australia president Meinhardt NT in 1995 and
any barriers - perceived or worked alongside Graeme
associates and technologists
real - that discourage people Townes, who was the Meinhardt
from becoming members,” Mr throughout the year has
Godfrey said. helped in showing the broader The Pandanus building in Darwin. Photo: Christopher Knight Mr Chappell and Mr Townes,
Engineers Australia’s 87,000- membership the role they play
a structural engineer, bought
plus membership includes about as part of the team - so that has Engineering technologist Len out Meinhardt’s NT practice in
1400 engineering technologists been pretty valuable.” Chappell can truly lay claim 1998. Their business employs
and 5000 associates. Many of the problems to having made his mark on 12 people and has an annual
Engineering technologists tackled were “back oﬃce” issues, Darwin. turnover around $2 million.
generally possess a three-year including voting rights within The two tallest buildings on Mr Chappell holds a certiﬁcate
degree in that ﬁeld, while the organisation. the city’s skyline - the 33-storey in electrical engineering and has
associates possess a two-year Engineers Australia is also Evolution and 28-storey completed a number of further
associate degree, advanced working to join the Dublin Pandanus complexes – are among courses during his career of more
diploma or equivalent. Accord, which would provide the projects Mr Chappell has than 40 years.
Mr Godfrey said the Year of international recognition of turned his skills to in the past He said the diﬀerence between
the Engineering Team theme for the engineering associate level year. an engineering technologist and
2008 stemmed from an approach qualiﬁcations of its members. The 59-year-old director of a professional engineer boiled
by the national committees of “We are hoping by mid engineering consultancy Townes down to “one year at uni”.
engineering technologists and 2009 we’ll be a signatory to Chappell Mudgway designed “An engineering technologist
engineering associates, who had the Dublin Accord. That will the electrical services for those has the equivalent of a three-
proposed a number of actions to allow mobility for associates, as and many other major Northern year degree, while a professional
address issues of concern. we have with the Washington Territory facilities. Len Chappell engineer has four-year degree
These actions have included Accord - which allows mobility “(This means) liaising with the Townes Chappell Mudgway director qualiﬁcations,” Mr Chappell said.
increasing awareness within for professional engineers,” Mr supply authority, designing sub- “It all comes back to, basically,
Engineers Australia, primarily Godfrey said. “ stations, high-voltage cabling Townes Chappell Mudgway education and they say with a
through personal stories in the In June this year, Engineers coming into the place, low- covers a range of technical and four–year degree you really learn
organisation’s magazine. Australia became a full signatory voltage cabling and reticulation administrative tasks including a bit more intense maths and
“A lot of engineers don’t member of the Sydney Accord, throughout the building for liaising with project architects science-type subjects.
necessarily understand the role which provides international lighting and general purpose and clients, checking the “But there are a lot of
of an engineering associate or recognition of engineering power, as well as voice and data design work of engineers and people out there with ability –
technologist,” Mr Godfrey said. education and training at the communication,” he said. following jobs through to technologists with exactly the
“Telling the stories of level of engineering technologist. Mr Chappell’s role at ensure construction is carried same abilities as engineers.”
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24 PRTS FEATURE December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
Measuring up Extreme exercise
Townsville-based company PRTS offers a wide back-up services for measuring
instruments to processing
range of instruments and back-up services to industries. One of the hardest where tools were developed
meet the mineral processing industry’s needs. Every process will have a requests PRTS director and calibrated to operate
measuring tool, according to Greg Fitzgerald has faced in a northern hemisphere
There is nothing subtle about the precise measurement can be the director Greg Fitzgerald – as a supplier of ﬁeld summer, Mr Fitzgerald said.
business of pulling minerals out diﬀerence between creation and whether it be for temperature, instruments was to measure “They operate on these
of the ground. anarchy. pressure or humidity, the ﬂow of the levels in an autoclave for cement silos in Germany
But the process of separating It is certainly the diﬀerence air or water, level, pH or density. a Papua New Guinea-based where the ambient
the “wheat from the chaﬀ ”, so between value adding and big “Eﬀectively, you need to look mining operation. temperature is 15 degrees,”
to speak, can be as exacting as proﬁts. at the end result,” he said. An autoclave is like a he said.
surgery. Townsville-based company rotary kiln that operates at “You just can’t
“The process in mining is
around 1200 degrees and is comprehend that you have
The temperatures and PRTS is one of only a few in controlling the content of the full of a cocktail of caustic the same instrument sitting
chemicals are extreme and the country providing retail and end product so it is a saleable substances. on top of a silo in North
item. “The only way we could Queensland where the
“That’s what ﬁeld instruments do it was to make the base ambient temperature is 50
do. They provide the data in the of this particular instrument degrees plus the ‘heat soak’.
ﬁeld back to the operator so they out of solid titanium,” Mr They were failing every
can control the end product.” Fitzgerald said. summer.
Mr Fitzgerald said PRTS “They had an instrument “A client would buy
was able to oﬀer access to tools doing a similar job. It melted these instruments each year
in half and the electronics because they were failing.
for applications ranging from
fell outside and the horn fell So we designed protective
temperature and ultrasonic
inside. hoods for them; insulated
measurements, through to radar “If you said ‘hey, this one’s ﬁre blanket hoods.
levels and pressure transmitters. cheap’ but it melts in half, “We design and fabricate
to serve the multitude of then it doesn’t matter, it is them for any instrument;
demands the market placed on not cheap at all. from an ultrasonic
the minerals processing industry. “Basically, we went to the measurement probe to
The secret of operating a manufacturer and had one nucleonic density gauges, to
service in the tropical north was made out of titanium to ﬂow meters.
ﬁrstly to have a suite of products withstand the heat, pressure “The same client now gets
and secondly to be able to hone and the caustic substances.” four years out of the same
There were other instances instrument.”
PRTS director Greg Fitzgerald and instrument engineer Marco Marttila outside items to speciﬁcally suit the
the firm’s Townsville operations. Photo: Stewart McLean application, Mr Fitzgerald said.
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 PRTS FEATURE 25
Perfect match vary according to demand, Mr
PRTS personnel pride themselves on product
knowledge, with the ability to supply just the “We are currently working
right instrument for specific applications. with an underground mine in
North Queensland in improving
When it comes to measuring made of mild or stainless the damper operation on their
industrial processes, Townsville- steel, or unable to handle high ventilation system,” he said.
based PRTS has your measure. temperatures or corrosive “Up to this point they used
Exact measure that is, meeting conditions. a block and tackle to open PRTS director Greg Fitzgerald checks a crate of goods bound for west
levels of tolerance set by the most “Some applications may be and close the vents and we are Africa. Photo: Stewart McLean
precise industry standards.
Radar, laser, ultrasonic,
pressure, temperature and Townsville ﬁrm packs a
ﬂow measuring devices from
Germany, the UK and the United punch in overseas market
States can be accessed, calibrated
and maintained by PRTS. A solid reputation and good Many destinations were remote
Teaming up the appropriate relationships with national and the bottom line was that the
ﬁeld instrument with a process professional service providers goods arrived as ordered, PRTS
was what set the company apart, has put Townsville-based ﬁeld director Greg Fitzgerald said.
PRTS instrument engineer instruments supplier PRTS into “Meeting tight time frames and
Marko Marttila said. overseas markets. deadlines is where we have been
“It’s common sense that an PRTS draws on a worldwide very strong in the past,” he said.
instrument’s capabilities need to network of manufacturers to “Apart from the accounting
be up to the job is it being asked supply processing and mining process, our quality control person
to do,” Mr Marttila said. operations. It meets demands cross checks the packing.
“But the devil is in the detail for ﬂow, pressure, density or “Each stage of the packaging
or in this case the speciﬁcations. acidity measurement and aids is documented by digital
“Our point of diﬀerence is in the processes fundamental to photography so you can clearly
product knowledge and having automated systems. see what each instrument is,
the right instrument for the Since being established in the tag number and how it is
application.” Townsville in the late 80s by packaged.”
Buying such instruments oﬀ engineer John Jaksch, PRTS has Consistency of supply added
the shelf could prove a false extended its service around the to reputation and helped build
economy, because they may not Instrument engineer
southern hemisphere to the point relationships with international
be appropriate to the planned Marko Marttila with
where 40 per cent of its business suppliers, many based in
application, he said. a magnetic flow
meter. is done overseas. Australia, Mr Fitzgerald said.
“An instrument can be too
big. By that I mean it is not
calibrated to measure the
applications, like measuring
Photo: Stewart McLean
Tough tags to keep track of gear
abrasive and we can ﬁt soft installing an automated system.
diﬀerential pressure in a clean PRTS describes its
rubber or even ceramic liners if “We are going further and Queensland-made ﬁeld
room,” Mr Marttila said.
“...In other cases, measuring need be. introducing a telemetric system instrument tags as indestructible.
the ﬂow in hydrocarbons requires “Hastelloy electrodes are to further reduce the manual The high-grade stainless steel
a speciﬁc instrument - as they another good example. It is a element. This reduces costs and tags with deep engravings are
are non-conductive, a magnetic very hard-surfaced material and increases eﬃciency.” wired to instruments with
ﬂow meter is unsuitable. The ﬂow extremely resistant to abrasion. With the current economic stainless steel.
meter may also be too small for “The point is we have the climate, he said many clients The engraving is ﬁlled with
certain applications and need knowledge to be able to respond were focusing on improving powder coat and baked. It is then
replacement in a short time, with cost-eﬀective measures.” existing infrastructure to be more burnished. This makes for easy
again adding to the cost. PRTS oﬀered an advisory eﬃcient and cost eﬀective with a A high-grade stainless steel instrument cleaning and reading, regardless
“Diﬀerent meters may be and support role which could higher-quality end product. tag. Photo: Stewart McLean of conditions.
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26 HEALTH AND SAFETY FEATURE December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
In pursuit of wellness funds extra
Laser therapy can help people break free of a wellbeing. They erode our addictions, as well as stress,
health - leaving us lethargic, anxiety, insomnia, depression,
range of physical and psychological problems, listless, unmotivated, chronic fatigue, obsessive
The new mining industry safety
and health levy which recently
according to a Queensland practitioner. uninspired, overweight and compulsive disorder, phobias came into eﬀect would boost the
unable to get on with the happy, and more. services provided by the State’s
A Cairns business is using a ﬁnd ourselves overweight, healthy and productive lives we “One single treatment is mines inspectorate, Queensland
combination of the latest laser stressed, anxious, depressed or desire.” usually all that it takes break Mines and Energy Minister
technologies, nutrient support fatigued. Mr Hall said ALTC could free of addiction and regain Geoﬀ Wilson said.
and cognitive behavioural “These conditions gradually oﬀer treatment for nicotine, control of your life and Mr Wilson said the
therapies to help clients rob us of our ﬁtness and alcohol, narcotics and gambling wellbeing,” he said. inspectorate provided vital safety
overcome conditions including and health services that helped
addictions, stress, phobias and save lives.
insomnia. “Nothing is more important
Advanced Laser Therapy than that; the Bligh Government
Clinics (ALTC) specialises in is asking for $26 million from
providing single multi-faceted an industry worth more than
treatments that eﬀectively $26 billion to Queensland in
address both the physical and 2006/2007,” he said.
psychological aspects of such “Taxpayers should not have to
conditions, according to clinical ﬁt the bill for that.”
director Christopher R. Hall. He said Queensland had the
“Taking care of our physical best mine safety legislation in
and psychological wellbeing is Australia and it had to continue
an obvious necessity if we wish to be enforced mine by mine,
to live in a happy, healthy and employer by employer, worker by
productive way,” he said. worker.
“However coping with and “This new levy will fund seven
balancing work responsibilities, new specialist mines inspectors,
family and the numerous other two investigators, ﬁve scientiﬁc
concerns we face in our daily research staﬀ, an occupational
lives can challenge and even hygienist, a statistician and a
threaten our physical and manager of health surveillance,”
psychological health. Mr Wilson said.
“We can ﬁnd ourselves “I am conﬁdent that the
addicted to things like nicotine, industry will see the logic in a
alcohol, narcotics or we may ALTC says its treatments can help clients crush nicotine addiction. safety and health levy. ”
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The Mining Advocate | December 2008 - January 2009 HEALTH AND SAFETY FEATURE 27
Course draws strong demand
Training organisation First variety of industries - oﬀshore
Response Australia has seen a petroleum and gas; coal and
dramatic increase in enrolments metalliferous mining; federal
for its Certiﬁcate IV, Emergency police; white water river guides
Medical Response program. and even the internationally
Turning out more than 250 renowned Cirque de Soleil,” Ms Course participants
Emergency Medical Technicians Afeaki said. gain valuable
(EMTs) a year, First Response “They took away valuable pre-hospital care
Australia can be credited as one pre-hospital care skills skills.
of the nation’s most specialised such as triage, intravenous
training organisations in the cannulation and ﬂuid therapy,
area of pre-hospital care and has head and spinal injuries,
the largest range of nationally advanced airway management
recognised accredited emergency and musculoskeletal injury
care programs in Australia, management to name a few.
according to general manager “These skills sets are
Lisieux Afeaki. vital to ensure that on-site
“First Response’s training emergency response teams
is so sought after that 2009 are as prepared in rescue and
scheduled Certiﬁcate III and extraction of the casualties as Ms Afeaki said the training
IV public programs have now they are in emergency medical period was complemented by
doubled, with students now able preparedness.” about 100 hours of pre-course
to access the course in Cairns She said the recent resource study and was emotionally
and in Melbourne at Swinburne boom across Australia and strenuous for students.
University,” Ms Afeaki said. Asia had highlighted an She urged those people
As well as oﬀering courses acute shortage of skilled and
considering signing up for the
in Cairns and Melbourne, qualiﬁed emergency response
course to allow themselves or
the organisation runs on-site co-ordinators, placing a strain
training for mining operations on industry’s obligations to their their employees plenty of time.
and other industry groups. occupational health and safety Course enrolments close
“The fully booked November requirements. six weeks prior to program
programs of Certiﬁcate IV First Response Australia’s commencement. For
and refresher courses saw EMT program runs over 11 more details visit www.
participants come from a days. ﬁrstresponseaustralia.com.au.
Water service warning Training for rescue team leaders
The Queensland region operation where The Australian Institute of have completed a Certiﬁcate III need to have a high level of
Department of Mines and water ﬂowed back Mine Rescue (AIMR) will or higher in mine emergency physical ﬁtness and would
Energy has called for all through a hose line launch a mine rescue instructors’ response and rescue, or a need to possess the will to
mines and processing plants and contaminated the course in February 2009. Certiﬁcate III in public safety continuously improve their level
to review procedures for potable water system with Principal consultant Riki ﬁre supervision. They should of capability.
the installation, upgrade processing water and Tahau said the time had come be working towards or already Mr Tahau said the course
and maintenance of water residual process chemicals. for Townsville-based AIMR to have a Certiﬁcate IV in Training would teach participants to
reticulation services The department stated raise the bar for team leaders, Assessment. safely organise emergency rescue
where there is an interface that recycled processing with mine rescue team members Mr Tahau said the course was training for teams in areas
between processing and water pipes, conduits and now commonly achieving not for beginners and a much including breathing apparatus,
potable water. ducts should be coloured
Certiﬁcate III levels throughout higher standard of eﬀort would ﬁre, rope rescue, industrial
The notiﬁcation follows black as per the relevant
Australia. be required to succeed than in trauma management, team
an incident at a northern Australian standard.
He said each participant in the more basic rescue courses. physical training, hazchem
instructors’ course should already He said participants would response and vehicle extrication.
AR E Y O U P R E PARE D FOR A M E D I CAL EMERGENC Y?
First Response Australia have been educating First Responders and
Emergency Medical Technicians since 1999.
Our training is guaranteed to ensure that your response teams are ready
for any medical trauma, from basic ﬁrst aid to critical care casualty
management and triage.
Have peace of mind that these valuable pre-hospital care skills will
make a difference to your ability to respond to a medical emergency.
Contact us now for information on our upcoming courses for:
Certiﬁcate IV in Emergency Medical Response 30714QLD
Certiﬁcate III in Occupational Emergency Care 30713QLD
Courses held at:
Cairns, QLD and Swinburne University, Melbourne, VIC
or at your site...........
Tel: (07) 4032 2444
28 THE YEAR THAT WAS December 2008 - January 2009 | The Mining Advocate
FROM ALL AT THE MINING ADVOCATE
A reminder to Queensland engineers:
Your subscription to The Mining Advocate
through Engineers Australia ceases in 2009.
To continue the service you will need to
Send your name and contact details to
January 25, 2009.
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