3 April 2018
Australia’s pipeline of mining projects is at risk unless industry, government and the research community cooperate on mineral exploration.
That’s the central message in a new action statement on increasing mineral discovery success published by the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE).
Denise Goldsworthy, who chairs ATSE’s Mineral Resources Forum, welcomed two Federal Government initiatives – the announcement of funding for a MinEx CRC and the calling of a snap review of Australia’s mining industry.
Ms Goldsworthy said: “Over 20 years, Australia’s share of global mineral exploration expenditure has halved. This puts the production pipeline under threat, given it takes more than a decade to move from discovery to mining.
“ATSE is calling for a united effort from industry, the research community and government to increase the success rate of discovering new, internationally competitive Australian mineral deposits in increasingly challenging geological, environmental and social conditions.”
Recommendations in the ATSE statement include:
Ms Goldsworthy, who is also Chair of the Minerals Research Institute of Western Australia (MRIWA), said: “We need governments to work with industry to create a management entity that can provide national coordination for the vision and roadmap provided by the UNCOVER Australia project.
“That includes coordinating efforts to strengthen Australia’s $90 billion mining equipment, technology and services (METS) sector, where the development of exploration technologies needs to be driven by the technology requirements identified by UNCOVER.
“It would also be useful for more industry partners, both METS and miners, to become involved in the work of MinEx CRC as a collaborative approach to achieving these outcomes.”
NOTE: Dr Erica Smyth and Professor Chris Pigram, two of the ATSE Fellows involved in drawing up the ATSE statement, have been named on the MinEx CRC board. MRIWA is a MinEx CRC partner.
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