Exploration and development company Kalium Lakes its one step closer to further developing its flagship Beyondie sulphate of potash project in Western Australia after it had been granted all of the mining tenure. The tenure – which includes two mining leases, 15 miscellaneous licenses and a gas pipeline license in addition to 15 previously granted ones – has been awarded with the consent of the region’s native holders in accordance with signed Mining Land Access agreements.
The tenure covers all required project activities including mining (brine extraction), evaporation ponds, sulphate-of-potash (SOP) purification, water supply borefield and pipelines, communications, power generation, accommodation facilities and supporting infrastructure. The company’s CEO Brett Hazelden said that Kalium remains the only SOP firm to have all the tenure requirements in place. “[This milestone] will help us develop what we expect will be the first commercial SOP production facility in Australia,” he said and added that “it allows the full value chain to be accomplished including extraction of the brine, evaporation to form salts, SOP purification and haulage to the Australian agricultural industry or an export [facility].”
Since its founding in October 2014, Kalium has invested more than 30 million dollars in exploration and development of the Beyondie project, which is a low-cost operation expected to initially produce around 82,000 tons per year of SOP. This amount should go up to 164,000 tons per year over a proposed lifetime of the mine – 30 years. A feasibility study in September last year confirmed that the project was “technically and financially robust”, thus opening up the way for the completion of a final investment decision expected by end of March. Full construction activities are due to begin around 15 months after the final investment decision.