Sixteen companies have lined up to apply for uranium exploration permits in NSW following the State Government’s move to overturn a 26-year ban on the mineral.
Illuka Resources, North Mining, and Broken Hill Prospecting account for some of the 39 expressions of interest lodged in the state’s sector, Fairfax Media reports.
The NSW Aboriginal Land Council has also submitted two tenders that aim to explore for uranium in the dams that hold waste from the state’s biggest coal-fired power stations.
The NSWALC said there could be hundreds of millions of dollars worth of uranium in the power plant dams, and the wealth created from mining projects would help move more aboriginal people out of disadvantage.
Earlier this year the NSWALC also applied for the right to explore for coal seam gas in NSW.
Energy and Resources Minister Chris Hartcher said now that expressions of interest had closed, the companies would be assessed by an expert panel and successful applicants would be invited to apply for a licence.
“This is a new area of exploration and a new opportunity to create an industry which will give the state’s economy a real boost,” he said.
“It is time for NSW to look at every opportunity to join the mining boom which is delivering enormous profits and jobs to Western Australia, Queensland, and South Australia.”
Image: The Australian