Flinders Power has struck and agreement with CU-River Mining to sell the former power station site in Port Augusta, South Australia in a move that promises a jobs boon for the Upper Spencer Gulf town.
|Image courtesy ©CU-River Mining|
Cu-River Mining plans to turn the huge site into a bulk commodity, transhipment port facility, with the acquisition expected to provide a substantial jobs boon. More than 150 people are anticipated to be employed at peak and up to 100 permanent positions will be created once the facility is in operation.
CU-River, established in 2014, is a significant South Australian iron ore magnetite producer with a mine and several highly prospective exploration leases in the far north of South Australia.
The facility is expected to have initial capacity up to 15 million tonnes per annum, with future export potential – via a multi-stage development approach – is planned to exceed 50 million tonnes per annum.
The AU$250 million port facility will be capable of handling iron ore, grain and other commodities.
The company expects to begin operations within two years once feasibility and approvals are complete. This will see the return of commercial shipping to Port Augusta for the first time in almost half a century.
The retention of key infrastructure at the site, including a 5-kilometre rail loop and unloading systems, made the site an attractive proposition for CU-River.
CU-River’s External Affairs Manager, Shelaye Boothey, said the 1,068-hectare site was an important acquisition for the company.
“CU-River has a strong project pipeline and an ambitious growth strategy that will see it headquartered in South Australia for decades to come,” Ms Boothey said.
“The purchase of the site is a significant, strategic decision that allows CU-River to secure a direct export pathway for the 15 million tonnes of high-grade iron ore magnetite it plans to mine each year from 2026.
“However, it is our intention to develop the port as a multi-user facility, providing Spencer Gulf and far-north industry with further export opportunities.”
Ms Boothey said that due to the significant size of the site there is considerable scope for the land to be further developed for a number of commercial uses.
“We will be examining the feasibility of constructing a large-scale solar farm,” she said.
“We will be exploring every option to ensure the site’s commercial potential is maximised.
The power station ceased generation in May 2016. Since then, Flinders Power has been responsible for the decommissioning and demolition of the power station and rehabilitation of the site.
It’s expected the sale of the site will be finalised in early April 2019, once remediation is complete.
CU-River acknowledges both the community’s keen interest in the future success of the site and the company’s obligation and commitment to ongoing rehabilitation.
Flinders Power Chief Executive Officer, Peter Georgaris, said the company is committed to meeting its closure and rehabilitation obligations.
“Rehabilitation and remediation are core to our agreed plan,” Mr Georgaris said.
“We are focused on a successful transition to a new and exciting future for this significant infrastructure site. I believe the transition of the site into a port facility is an outstanding opportunity for Port Augusta and the region.”