Ranger gets the go ahead

Energy Resources Australia (ERA) has received exploration approval for the Ranger uranium mine in the Northern Territory.

Energy Resources Australia (ERA) has received approval for further exploration at the Ranger uranium mine in the Kakadu National Park.

The Northern Territory Government yesterday notified ERA that it did not require formal environmental assessment in order to commence drilling of the Ranger 3 Deeps ore body.

This follows a similar approval from the Federal Government in May.

First announced late last year, the Ranger 3 Deeps ore body has a current resource of around 34,000 tonnes of uranium oxide.

Approval from both governments was required before ERA could begin its exploration, which will feature close spaced drilling and the building of a three kilometre long underground tunnel.

ERA will now commence a $4 million feasibility study on the project, with construction of the exploration decline to potentially start in the first half of 2010.

The exploration approval comes days after ERA released its June quarter report in which the company announced a 44% increase in uranium production compared to the same time last year.

The 1480 tonnes produced during the June quarter was also up 22% on production from the start of the year, the company said.

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