The Fingerboards Critical Minerals Project focuses on a high grade orebody in East Gippsland, Victoria.
Gippsland Critical Minerals proposes to extract approximately 170 million tonnes of ore to produce approximately 8 million tonnes of heavy mineral concentrate (HMC) over 15-20 years. HMC will contain the valuable heavy critical minerals that have been extracted from the ore but has not yet been processed into final mineral products.
The heavy critical minerals are rare earths, zircon, ilmenite and rutile which are in high global demand for use in renewable energy, windturbines, electric vehicles, communications, medical technology and transport.
Employment and Economic Benefits
The project will provide a significant boost to employment and economic development in East Gippsland.
Construction employment for the project will be approximately 200 jobs.During its 15 to 20-year operation, the project will create up to 200 direct jobs, injecting wages of $15-20 million into the economy each year and generating another $10 million annually in royalties and tax payments to the Victorian Government.
The capital investment required to establish the project is over $200 million. Flow-on employment due to increased demand for services is estimated to amount to an additional 150-200 jobs in the local community.
The Fingerboards Critical Minerals Project will use best environmental management systems to avoid, minimise and manage potential environmental impacts.
The mine will be progressively rehabilitated to return the land to pre-mining land use – agriculture and native vegetation.
As part of this process the project will restore up to 200 ha of nationally threatened grassy redgum woodland on ex- plantation forestry lands.
Sand is removed using conventional earth moving equipment and the minerals are extracted using gravity separation and water.
No harmful chemicals are used in the mining or the mineral separation process.
About 95 percent of the mined material is returned to the void and land rehabilitation happens continuously as the extraction activity progresses across the site.