Home' InDaily : July 30th 2010 Contents www.independentweekly.com.au
July 30 - August 5, 2010
The Independent Weekly
The month of June 2010
has proven another
milestone for Adelaide-
based Ramelius Resources
Limited with production
and sales of gold from
its Western Australian
operations higher than in
any previous month in the
company s history as a gold
In its full June quarterly
report Ramelius (ASX:
"RMS") said gold in ore
production for the month of
June rose to a record 20,430
The production, at 19.6
grams per tonne (g/t) gold
produced 12,860 ounces, also
a record for any month.
The June milestone took
gold in ore production for
the final quarter of 2009-10
to a record 50,000 tonnes
mined at 18 g/t for gold
output of 28,650 ounces.
Full-year gold production
was up 273 per cent.
Following a similar
trend was the value of the
company s gold sales, which
jumped to $24.4 million in
the latest June quarter at an
average price of A$1,294.00
This propelled gold sales
194 per cent higher to a
record $58.2 million (up
from $19.8 million) for the
full year to June 30, 2010.
The quarterly report
showed that Ramelius
entered the new financial
year debt free and with cash
and gold in hand of $94.3
As previously announced,
the company s shareholders
recently approved a capital
return of 5 cents per fully
paid ordinary share,
totalling $14.5 million.
Directors advised the ASX
that a record date for the
return of capital had been
set at the close of business
on August 6, 2010.
Ramelius shares are
trading "ex-entitlement" on
the ASX from today.
Australia s coal miners will be
watching with great interest
the increasingly vitriolic
debate about closing unprofit-
able coal mines that has
recently flared up in Europe.
The debate started last
week when the European
Commission released a new
proposal that would only allow
states to subsidise unprofitable
hard (black) coal mines if the
mine had a plan for closing
down within the next four years.
Further, the EU said that
subsidies paid to unprofit-
able mines were to be used for
retraining miners and cleaning
up the mines, rather than for
The level of subsidy will be
progressively decreased over
the next four years, and those
mines that fail to close by the
October 2014 deadline will have
to repay their subsidies.
In addition, the EU wants
countries that subsidise their
unprofitable mines -- princi-
pally Germany and Spain, and,
to a lesser extent, Romania -- to
mitigate the negative environ-
mental effects of their coal
industry subsidies by spending
more on renewable energy,
encouraging increased energy
efficiency and on measures for
carbon capture and storage.
European coal miners,
faced with rising extraction
costs, have been struggling to
compete with cheaper imported
coal for decades.
The EU produced only 147
million tonnes of hard (black)
coal in 2008, representing a
mere 2.5 per cent of global
output. That same year, the
sector received $US3.8 billion
in government subsidies. The
EU does not allow countries to
subsidise soft coal, or lignite.
But politicians are worried
about the immense social
costs of phasing out the state
subsidies. The coal mining
sector employs around 100,000
people in Europe; 42,000 in the
coal sector itself, and more than
55,000 in related industries.
Many worry that the closure
of unprofitable coal mines will
see a flood of unemployed coal
miners hit the unemployment
queues, bloating unemploy-
According to the EU, the
regions that would be heaviest
hit would be Germany s Ruhr
region, north-west Spain and
Romania s Jiu Valley.
But some countries are far
from pleased with the EU s
policy. According to the French
newspaper Le Monde, German
chancellor, Angela Merkel was
"not thrilled" with the new EU
The new EU policy
undermines a "carbon
compromise" that was reached
between Germany s federal
government, the various state
governments and the mining
industry, which scrap subsidies
for hard coal mines by 2018.
The EU proposal will face
a vote before the end of the
year, and Germany and Spain
may be able to block the policy
provided they can muster up
You can be sure that our coal
miners will be watching the
European Union debate with
Europe's coal-face makeover
New ways with water
The challenge of retro-fitting
water resource technologies into
an ageing city s infrastructure
was on the table at this week s SA
Major Projects Conference, held at
Adelaide Convention Centre.
More than 300 conference
delegates were briefed on progress in
implementing planning strategies for
Greater Adelaide, including the State
Government s $400 million plans for
integration of desalination and storm
water projects into Adelaide s water
supply network, the Port Adelaide
Bulk Precinct development, Adelaide
Airport, Techport and urban
Presentations from government
and industry specialists explored the
design, planning, construction and
implementation of major projects,
claimed by government to total more
than $70 billion dollars.
The conference sessions were
closed to media, except with the "spe-
cific approval of several ministers," a
conference spokeswoman said.
Delegates said there was a major
focus on water.
Speaking outside the conference,
Rob Burnell, principal engineer at
Australian Water Environments, said
South Australia was going through a
prolonged period of adjustment to the
growing scarcity of water resources.
"Water as a resource now has a
higher value because of its scarcity,"
Mr Burnell said.
"Because of that rising value,
strategies such as storm water
harvesting and waste-water recycling
become more economically viable.
"But the challenge is to retro fit it
into cities and towns that were built
in a different set of circumstances.
"I think there s little doubt for
example that if we were to build
suburbs such as Lockleys and West
Lakes today, we would be designing
them much differently," he said.
"Both those areas were built on
"If you build them now you would
integrate those swamp systems into
your water resources strategy so that
it would be easier, cheaper and more
effective to trap and treat water t
hat otherwise just runs off into the
Mr Burnell s company Australian
Water Environments began life in the
1990s working on salt water intercep-
tion projects on the River Murray,
including its award-winning project
"Now in 2010 we are working on the
developing integrated water manage-
ment plans for regional towns and
urban developments," he said.
"You assess the quality and
availability of the drinking water
supply, how much treatable waste
water there is, storm water flows
and storage options, underground
resources and finally the overall
needs of the community.
"You then balance those supply
issues with the demand issues and
manage both to serve both."
He pointed to the work of
Salisbury Council as an example of
how modern developments can sit
comfortably with a broad range of
water management options.
"Urban expansion, drought,
degraded and depleted water
resources and water courses have
changed the way we view water,
leading to a more holistic approach
to water resources management," he
State Government infrastructure
executive Rod Hook told the confer-
ence delegates sustainable design was
a key element of major project work.
"With so much happening in
South Australia, this conference will
provide you with an opportunity
to explore the design, planning,
construction and implementation of
major projects currently underway or
in the pipeline," Mr Hook said.
"This includes projects such as
the $291 million Seaford rail exten-
sion, which is part of a $2.6 billion
revitalisation of Adelaide s public
transport network, the $1.8 desalina-
tion plant, the $812 million South
Road Superway and the $1.7 billion
new Royal Adelaide Hospital.
"The conference will also enable
you to see how investment in sustain-
able transport, urban planning and
infrastructure solutions is transform-
ing South Australia into the place to
live, work and do business."
Water management specialist Rob Burnell at this week's infrastructure conference.
Photo: Kate Elmes.
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