Mine tailings pollution waterJubilee Platinum, AIM-quoted and AltX-listed Mine-to-Metals company, has signed a tailings treatment agreement with Hernic Ferrochrome for the beneficiation of Chrome and Platinum Group Metals from its surface tailings, but the company is interested in adding a third tailings project to its portfolio.

Jubilee has concluded a heads of agreement with Hernic, the world’s fourth-largest ferrochrome producer. Hernic targets to appoint Jubilee as the exclusive party to beneficiate the chrome and platinum group metals (PGMs) contained in its surface tailings.

“We are very proud as a company, to be selected as the exclusive partner to execute Hernic’s PGM processing project following an extensive selection process by such a prestigious entity as Hernic.” The envisaged project will be the largest PGM beneficiation plant of Chrome tailings re-claimed from a surface chrome tailings dam in South Africa,” says Jubilee chief executive Leon Coetzer.

Looking at the agreement details

The agreement facilitates the processing of approximately 1.7 million tonnes of chrome tailings material and Hernic identified that the tailings material could exceed 3 million tonnes through additional drilling programs.

The 1.7 million tonnes of chrome tailings material has been fully drilled and assayed for Chrome and PGM content to produce a resource statement of which approximately 90% of the resource is classified within the measured category under the internationally recognised SAMREC code.

Under the agreement, Hernic and Jubilee intends to conclude a Plant Engineering and Design Agreement as well as a Co-operation Agreement in respect of PGM Concentrate to facilitate the construction and operation of a PGM processing plant at Hernic.

Considering other opportunities

Hernic is the second tailings treatment agreement that Jubilee has secured, having also reached an agreement with ASA Metals to build a processing plant to treat its tailings to extract PGMs and chrome.

Coetzer revealed that tailings treatment projects are highly competitive due to the low risk and cost involved as well as the ease and speed that tailings plants can be brought into operation. Jubilee’s ConRoast smelter in Middelburg has about 30% spare capacity, which could be filled by a third project that the board has already identified.

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