A multinational mining company has been given the green light to proceed with a US$749 million (A$1 billion) iron ore expansion project in Western Australia’s Pilbara region.
The State Government recently approved Rio Tinto’s Western Turner Syncline (WTS) Phase 2 Mine based at its existing Greater Tom Price Iron Ore Mine, 282km southeast of Karratha.
The decision means the proponent can proceed with building:
- a run of mine pad
- a primary crushing facility
- an Ammonium Nitrate and Fuel Oil Facility
- a 33 kilovolt power transmission network
- communications infrastructure
- water supply and reticulation
- heavy and light vehicle roads
- a 13km overland conveyor system between S10 (WTS1) and both B1 and S17 (WTS2).
A variety of modifications will also be required to the existing Tom Price Dry Crushing and Screening Processing Plant.
Rio confirmed it has made the controversial decision to install autonomous haulage system technology to its existing fleet of haul trucks from the year 2021. The move is promised is help improve mine safety, productivity and cost savings.
Construction is hoped to start before April 2020 and first ore is expected to be produced from the crusher before September 2021. More than 1000 jobs will be created throughout the two-year construction phase.
Rio has started recruiting for the following fly-in fly-out vacancies with an option of working four days on three days off, six days on six days off, seven days on seven days off, eight days on six days off, or two weeks on one week off:
- mobile plant operators (multiple positions)
- business improvement specialists (multiple)
- mine supervisors (multiple)
- dewatering planner.
Successful applicants will be offered a permanent position working directly for the proponent, company housing, subsidised living expenses, two flights to Perth each year, assistance with boarding costs for primary or secondary students, domestic relocation assistance, annual performance bonuses, company paid insurance, subsidised private health insurance, salary sacrificing of housing, airport parking, cars and superannuation.
Most of the technology and equipment needed to build the WTS proposal will be manufactured locally to maximise job opportunities for nearby workers.
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“The WTS project will boost WA’s economy, creating more than 1000 construction jobs and securing ongoing work for the company’s existing local workforce,” acting State Premier Roger Cook said in a public statement.