BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) has approved a $US204 million ($270.1 million) investment in the Caval Ridge Southern Circuit (CRSC) capital growth project in Queensland’s Bowen Basin.
CRSC is an 11km overland conveyor system which will transport coal from the Peak Downs mine to the coal handling preparation plant near the Caval Ridge mine.
The project will create up to 400 new construction jobs and about 200 ongoing operational roles, according to BHP. It will also result in the Caval Ridge preparation plant increasing its throughput to a 10 million tonnes per annum capacity.
BHP Billiton operations president, minerals Australia, Mike Henry said the project formed the missing link between the two mines.
“This investment furthers our productivity agenda, reduces costs, releases latent equipment capacity, and strengthens our coal business’ global competitiveness,” Henry said.
“We are committed to Queensland’s Bowen Basin and this project creates new employment opportunities during construction and locks in ongoing operational roles. The investment flowing from the project will help support the local community and state economy after what has been a difficult time in the region.”
Construction of the project is scheduled to commence mid-2017 and take 18 months to complete.
In addition to development of the conveyor and associated tie-ins, the project will also mean a new stockpile pad and run-of-mine station at Peak Downs, and upgrades to the coal handling preparation plant and stockyard at Caval Ridge.
BMA will also invest in new mining fleet, including excavators, and trucks.