The Kalkadoon people this week celebrated Traditional Ownership over a significant area of land at the site of the proposed Dugald River mine.
The ‘Welcome to Country’ ceremony was the first official event held on site following the formal recognition of the Kalkdoon people as Traditional Owners over 40,000 square kilometres of land in north-west Queensland last year.
The event cements the existing relationship between the Kalkadoon people and MMG, the owners of the Dugald River development project.
MMG General Manager Queensland Operations Mark Adams said he was honoured to have taken part in the ceremony.
“MMG values its relationships with Traditional Owners of Country at each of its sites, and have been working closely with the Kalkadoon people for many years now.
“It was a privilege for my team and I to take part in this special event recognising them as the Traditional Owners over this site.
“It was also an opportunity for us to thank the Kalkdoon people for their ongoing assistance in cultural clearance over the land.
At the ceremony, Kalkadoon Community Chairman Doug Bruce acknowledged the area’s history, while looking forward to the opportunities that would be created by working with MMG.
“While it’s still the early days of the project, our people have already been actively involved in development activities.
“We’re currently initiating some small contracts, with focus on building to more sustainable contracts which will be bring better outcomes for employment and training.”
Kalkadoon Elder Pat Kyle also spoke at the event, which included a bush tucker meal and unveiling of important pieces of by Kalkadoon artist.
The Dugald River project will also provide an annual contribution to a Kalkadoon MMG Development Fund for Kalkadoon community support.
About Dugald River
The Dugald River project is one of the world’s largest and highest grade known undeveloped lead-zinc-silver
deposits with a resource of 53 million tonnes at 12.5% zinc, 1.9% lead and 36g/t silver. It is located in north-west Queensland, approximately 65 kilometres north-west of Cloncurry and 85 kilometres north-east of Mt Isa. Dugald River is expected to produce an average of at least 200,000 tonnes of zinc, 25,000 tonnes of lead and 900,000 ounces of silver in concentrate per year. It has a projected mine life of over 22 years.
The project has received approval to proceed to the next stage of environmental permitting following the Queensland Department of Resource Management’s assessment report of the Environmental Impact Statement in November 2011.
The final decision on whether to develop Dugald River is expected to be made by the Board in 2012 once full environmental approval is received.
Meanwhile, work has commenced on the construction of the exploration decline in order to collect information on geotechnical conditions, ore body continuity, groundwater and suitability of the proposed mining method.
If approved, Dugald River is expected to have positive input into the local, Queensland and Australian economy through the generation of employment, the purchase of equipment, goods and services, and the payment of taxes and royalties.
Preliminary estimates of the annual economic contribution are estimated to be A$160 million in operating expenditure, A$35 million in taxes and A$14 million per year in royalties, subject to metal prices and production at the time.
The project remains on track to commence production during 2014.
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