Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up

A DEFINITIVE feasibility study for Aquila Resource’s Washpool hard coking coal project in Queensland has suggested the open cut operation could produce 2.6 million tonnes per annum over a 16-year mine life.
Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up Study gives Aquila's Washpool thumbs up

Washpool project area.

Lauren Barrett

The DFS, undertaken by Xenith Consulting, has also increased the projects JORC-compliant resource from 108.8Mt to 124.9Mt.

The proposed mine, owned by Aquila’s subsidiary Washpool Coal, will target the Scorpio seams of the Burngrove measures and will use the cast, doze and excavate mining method.

While it is predicted the mine will target 16 years of production, Aquila said based on the DFS the mine’s life could extend by up to three years by developing a deposit to the east.

Washpool is located in the northwest of Blackwater in the Bowen Basin, where the coal would be exported through the proposed Wiggins Island Coal Export Terminal in Gladstone.

The study indicated production at the project would ramp up to meet mechanical completion of stage one of WICET, while an application has been made to increase port capacity by 1Mtpa to 2.6Mtpa for stage two of WICET.

Aquila, along with seven other coal producers, yesterday reached an agreement with QR National to proceed with the construction of stage one of the Wiggins Island rail project.

First railings for the project are anticipated for mid-2014, with the remaining works due for completion by March 2015.

Mining lease approval for the Washpool project is on schedule for March 2012.

The Queensland government recently granted Aquila a mining lease for its Eagle Downs hard coking coal project in the Bowen Basin which has the potential to produce up to 5.1Mtpa of coal over an initial 10 year period.

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