SA Mines and Energy Journal : February-March 2010
11 FEATURE Australia is well placed to benefit from this, particularly in wind and hot rock energy. " Jason Kuchel, Chief Executive of the South Australian Chamber of Mines & Energy, says SA is home to myriad minerals and is fortunate not to rely on just one to boost its economic fortunes. "SA has a broad range of minerals and so the market for one mineral often smooths over the bumps of another, " he says. The mining industry in SA is increasingly vital to this state's economy. "Make no mistake, the mining industry is fast becoming one of the greatest contributors to this state, " Mr Kuchel says. "We don't expect that Adelaide will look like Perth, with rocketing house prices, sky-high rents and a huge amount of construction, but strong, steady growth in the mining industry will underpin this state. The benefits will be experienced by all South Australians. " Mr Kuchel says 2010 will be an interesting year in the industry, with Olympic Dam expected to return to full operation after a mine shaft failure late last year, and BHP Billiton responding to submissions on its environmental impact statement for the mid-north project's expansion, estimated by some to be worth as much as $20 billion. On the copper-gold front, Mr Kuchel says exploration will continue at the Carapateena deposit south-east of Roxby Downs, which is shaping up to be another large, Olympic Dam- style deposit. "It's a large deposit but very deep -- 400m below the surface -- so the cost of exploration is substantial, " he says. Canadian miner Teck plans to continue exploring the prospect over the next decade. David Archer, Managing Director of Hillgrove Resources, says his company will start mining at its Kanmantoo copper- gold mine, in SA's Adelaide Hills, in 2010. The $130 million mine is expected to generate 17,000 tonnes of copper concentrate and 8000 ounces of gold a year. Exploration will continue in and around the Kanmantoo area this year. In other developments, Prominent Hill, which was excluded from the controversial deal between Oz Minerals and China Minmetals last year, The future of mining in this state has never been rosier Heathgate Resources, which owns the Beverley uranium mine, has big plans for 2010.