It’s been a busy week for uranium developer Toro Energy which has appointed Fiona Harris as its new chairman and been given the go ahead to expand its Wiluna mine.
Harris will assume the position of Chairman effective 16 March 2015 and replaces Erica Smyth who has elected to retire from the Board after nine years both as a Non-Executive Director and Chairman.
Harris currently holds board positions are with Infigen Energy, BWP Trust, Perron Group and Oil Search Limited. She has also been a National Director of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and WA State President.
Meanwhile, Toro also announced it would be reducing its number of directors by two.
The company’s founding managing director Greg Hall has decided to retire, while another board member is expected to resign from the board in coming months.
Toro Energy is vying to be the first uranium miner in West Australia with its proposed Wiluna mine.
Toro already has all the approvals in place to go ahead with its Wiluna mine and last year sought permission from the WA Government to add two more deposits to the mine plan.
Last week the West Australian Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) approved the Environmental Scoping Document (ESD) for the project extension.
Under the proposal, the company would integrate the newly acquired Millepede and Lake Maitland deposits into the project, doubling the processing plant’s operating life beyond 20 years.
During that period, the operation would produce up to 1200 tonnes per annum (tpa) of uranium oxide concentrate (UOC).
An extended Wiluna Uranium Mine would employ about 200 personnel at full production capacity. A workforce of approximately 350 would be required during the construction phases at Millipede and Lake Maitland.
Construction and pre-mining are scheduled to begin at Wiluna in 2016 subject to government approval and market conditions.
Toro’s Managing Director, Dr Vanessa Guthrie, said ‘the EPA’s approval of the ESD will allow Toro to continue preparation of the Public Environmental Review (PER) as the next step in the assessment process.’
“The EPA has determined that the PER should be open for public review for a 12-week period and Toro is planning to release this document in mid-2015,” Guthrie said.
Guthrie said the PER would be a further opportunity for Toro to consult with the community about plans for the wider Wiluna Project.