Hastings Metals Technology has ticked another box for its Yangibana rare earths project in Western Australia, receiving governmental approvals for environmental management and a revised mining proposal.
The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation approved the company’s Flora and Vegetation Environmental Management Plan as a condition of its original approval from 2019.
This condition stipulated the plan must satisfy the chief executive officer of the WA Environmental Protection Authority (EPA).
In addition, Hastings received approval for a revised mining proposal from the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS).
These approvals allow for early works at the site to continue, as Hastings endeavours to become the next major rare earths producer in Australia.
Yangibana is located 250 kilometres north east of Carnarvon with total granted leases covering 650 square kilometres.
Across these tenements, Hastings is believed to own a resource of up to 10.3 million tonnes at an average grade of 0.43 per cent neodymium and praseodymium.
Hastings has already received approval for a rare earths processing plant nearby in Onslow as part of the Ashburton northern strategic industrial area (ANSIA), 250 kilometres southwest of Dampier.
In October, Hastings executive chairman Charles Lew described the scope of the processing plant.
“The Commonwealth environmental approval will allow Hastings to construct the Onslow rare earths plant for a full production rate of 15,000 tonnes of MREC (mixed rare earths carbonate) per annum, unlocking the high-quality and praseodymium concentrate-rich rare earths carbonate that we will produce at Yangibana.”
BCI Minerals also became another emerging miner to receive approvals from the Western Australian Government, getting the nod for its environmental conservation efforts at the Mardie salt and potash project in the Pilbara.
BCI managing director Alwyn Vorster said the government had recognised the company’s devotion to responsible environmental management.
“The federal government’s support for Mardie is evidenced through a range of approvals, which also include $600 million of loan facilities and a ‘Major Project Status’ allocation to Mardie,” Vorster said.
“BCI has a strong commitment to environment and heritage protection and biodiversity conservation at Mardie.”