Australian resources company Carbine Resources has been awarded a contract by the Queensland Government to treat contaminated water at the historic Mount Morgan gold and copper mine.
Under the terms of the agreement, Carbine will use specialist technology to boost environmental management and flood protection and save more than $150,000 a year.
“Carbine Resources’ specialist water treatment expertise will mean better environmental outcomes, with more water from the pit decontaminated, without using fresh water. Carbine is also looking into using cutting edge technology to extract gold, copper and pyrite resources from the tailings stockpiles, and copper from the pit water, giving a piece of Queensland mining history a new opportunity to be a mineral producer,” said Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Dr Anthony Lynham.
Carbine Resources will use water polishing technology to treat up to 500 megalitres of mine pit water over 12 months.
“Carbine Resources will boost the existing plant’s capacity with specialist technology that will mean fresh water won’t be needed any more to operate the plant. If we don’t need to store freshwater in dams onsite to operate the plant, this means more capacity to cope with heavy rainfall without run-off,” Dr Lynham said.
“Better water treatment will also drop the water level in the mine pit, which in turn reduces the risk of contaminated pit water overflowing into the Dee River, as it did in 2013. Finally, the deal will achieve cost savings for the department because the water treatment plant currently costs approximately $1.4 million each year to operate.”
The initial contract for Carbine’s services has been set at $1.25 million before costs based on the discharge of 500ML per annum.
According to Carbine’s ASX Announcement, the company is currently doing feasibility studies into the potential to reprocess mineral tailing stockpiles on the mine site.