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WesTrac offers you the convenience of creating your own preventative maintenance service kits, specific to your machine needs, when and where you need it. • One part number means only entering one line item • Kits are packaged as one item and are clearly labelled with model and service interval • Order one or multiple kits when it suits you • Control your kit contents with ease by adding items like Hydo Advanced 10 • Available for any machine and any model To find out how you can simplify your ordering process contact WesTrac today on 9377 9666. WesTrac WA 128-136 Gt Eastern Highway South Guildford WA 6055

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MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

In this month’s issue of Australian Resource Focus, Dr Nikki Williams, Chief Executive Officer of the New South Wales Minerals Council, speaks to Contributing Editor Robert Hoshowsky on the need for government to take an active role in strategic land use planning, community consultation, and stakeholder engagement. These issues are critical in the resources sector, where the actions of one firm - the dust, even, from one coal mine - can have a significant impact on the surrounding landscape. Taking a holistic view of the industry and all its processes not only produces a comprehensive understanding of all factors economic, social, cultural, environmental, and political, but has simply become an example of best practice. With transparency comes trust, and with trust comes the goodwill, buy-in, and license to operate that is so crucial to a firm’s success. Companies such as Ngarda take this approach to community buy-in seriously. As Australia’s largest Indigenous owned and operated contracting company, Ngarda has a unique mandate to provide recruitment, training, ongoing employment and capacity-building opportunities for Aboriginals, and is finding itself in stiff competition with other firms for these highly skilled individuals. Focusing not just on profit, but on true economic development, the firm is a strong supporter of the communities in which it operates, with unique initiatives for youth and students.

Editor’s Pick In this month’s Australian Resource Focus, author Aleisha Parr examines the intersection of a thriving mining industry and a vibrant cultural scene. In Looking to the Future, Honouring the Past, Wincen Cuy, mayor of the town of Broken Hill, describes the town’s twin successes in generating successful mining ventures and creating a truly livable community. In The Total Package, contributing editor Robert Hoshowsky takes a closer look at how Total Drilling Services works closely with its clients to provide toquality service in the Drill and Blast sector. And in Where There’s Muck... There’s Brass, author John Boley speaks with Peter Dyson of Moltoni Energy, who describes the process of “bringing a mature product into an immature market” - that is, transforming municipal solid waste into energy for Australian consumption.

Many companies in addition to Ngarda are now making staff a priority. In the wake of some serious industry booms and with ongoing repair work to be done, skills shortages are growing ever more apparent, and qualified personnel are in high demand. Many of the firms we profile in this month’s issue are actively recruiting despite the tough times facing the industry. As insurance claims begin to be settled and coal mines continue to pump water from their depths, the future of the resources sector is anything but clear. But the businesses who will surely persevere are those who can do it all, and do it well - taking a big-picture view, recruiting the best and the brightest, and performing quality work.

Tim Hocken Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Production Editor Tim Hocken Creative Art Director Kulvir Singh Director of Business Dev. Robert Chambers Research Manager Cameron Walsh Caleb Richard


Director of IT Christian Cooper Contributing Editors Jaime McKee Robert Hoshowsky Contributing Writers Aleisha Parr Jen Hamilton John Boley

City of Broken Hill

06 News and Events

16 Moltoni

8th Floor, 55 Hunter St Sydney NSW 2000 GPO Box 4836, Sydney NSW 2001 Phone: 02 8412 8119 ABN 93 143 238 126

Where there’s Muck...

28 ADG Global Supply

Jeff Hocken Publisher

Industry News and Events

Supplying the World’s Mines

38 Queensland’s Floods

Policy and Planning

46 Ngarda Civil & Mining

In a Good Cause

56 AGC

The Courage To Be Bold

68 Storm on the Coastline

Concerns over Shell’s Plans in Exmouth

76 City of Broken Hill


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Looking to the Future, Honouring the Pas



ADG Global Supply

Queensland’s Floods Policy and Planning

88 Maritime Constructions

Big Fish...

100 NSW Minerals Council

Strategic Land Use a Top Priority in NSW

108 Ellton Group


Opportunities for Growth

116 Total Drilling Services

The Total Package

128 PWG King & Sons


Experience and Ethics


t Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Putting the Brakes on Fatigue-Related Deaths It is well-known mining is one of the world’s most dangerous professions, yet we sometimes overlook the fact that tragedies take place not only under the ground, but on the roads above as well. In Queensland, the mining industry – alongside unions and government – is waging a war against fatigue-related driving accidents. Recently, a number of recommendations were handed-down by Coroner Annette Hennessy on fatigue-related road accidents. The 24 recommendations follow two separate crashes in central Queensland. One was a crash that claimed two lives near Yeppoon in 2005, while the other was a 2007 accident near Dysart. In both cases, the crashes involved coal miners driving home from work, and while foul weather was a factor, it is likely driver fatigue was also involved.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

In some cases, mines encourage workers to use buses they provide to shuttle them back and forth to work sites, instead of using their own private vehicles for transportation. The Queensland Resources Council has been working on materials relating to mine fatigue, and will be considering recommendations made by the coroner to determine what can be done to improve safety for miners travelling to and from work in their own vehicles. Included among Coroner Hennessy’s recommendations are measures to identify fatigue both on the mine site and on the road, guidelines considering commuting time, greater police resources in the Bowen Basin, and possibly laws that would make driver fatigue an offence, or empowering officers to order motorists take a rest.

Maps Reveal Coal Mining Leases Environment Victoria recently announced the launch of a controversial website that reveals expansion of Victoria’s brown coal industry. The Wikipedia-style website “CoalWatch” uses a Google Earth map that allows users to zoom in on areas where coal mining exploration licenses are pending or have been granted. In addition, the website has an online database detailing developments in power stations, coal export plans, and more. Environment Victoria’s Mark Wakeham says many landowners remain unaware their land could be subject to coal exploration and new coal projects, which could have a significant impact on local landowners, farmers, and the environment. Instead of using Victoria’s coal for fuel, the group advocates investment in solar and wind technologies. The CoalWatch website is modeled on the American-based CoalSwarm site.

Queensland Coal Coming Back Strong


fter months of uncertainty and bad news as a result of devastating floods and cyclones, Queensland’s coal industry is showing strong signs of recovery. Recently released figures reveal the state’s coal export data shows the industry is now operating at two-thirds of its capacity. The figures are encouraging. According to Queensland Resources Council (QRC), Queensland exported eight million tonnes of coal in February of this year, compared to 12 million tonnes in February of 2010. Although the figures represent one month’s worth of exports only, they remain consistent with the QRC’s estimates of a 30 million downturn in coal production. In recent months, a number of mines were forced to close their coal operations due to the floods that swamped much of Queensland. With an estimated loss of revenue for 2011 in the $5 billion range, three out of every four coal mines are still struggling to pump dirty water from their flooded mines to get them operational once more. While the coal export figures are welcome, concerns remain over the possibility of additional flooding in Queensland’s coal regions, which would once again fill mines with water, setting them back to where they were a few months earlier.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Massive Mining Pro

Peak prices for copper and gold are leading to additional exploration in Queensland, where plans for a $200 million minerals processing plant are underway. The CuDECO company is developing a large project near Cloncurry, east of Mount Isa. The plans would see the company construct a plant on its Rocklands site, located about 15 kilometres from Cloncurry. If the cop-


per project goes ahead as planned, it would see the company construct 48 new homes for its workforce, and the creation of hundreds of jobs. While a number of approvals have yet to come through, the company has been given the green light for a 200-man camp on the outskirts of the town. The plant, once completed, will process an estimated three million tonnes of ore annually, and produce a high-grade copper concentrate.

Bombala Timber Meets Korean Investors

n New South Wales, construction of a $68 million softwood mill at Bombala will proceed soon, thanks to investment from Korea’s Dongwha Holdings. The original company behind the project, Willmott Forests, went into receivership last year, jeopardising the project. Wilmott’s partners, Dongwha Holdings, purchased the remaining 50 per cent share, enabling the project to continue.

for growth and employment in the area. Ironically, the multi-million dollar project – which had been in the planning stages for 15 years – just received State approval when developer Willmott Forests sank into receivership.

“We’ve had a long journey and a lot of twists in the road but I think we will now get a good foundation for the modernising of a The news is welcome to residents of The processing operation in the Bombala area,” Bombala Shire Council, who say the softwood says Bob Stewart, Bombala Shire Mayor. “It’s processing mill will create a solid foundation been a long time coming.”


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

oject Near Cloncurry


Beware the Midas Touch

n Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Australia’s largest charged with “stealing as a servant,” and make outback city, a pair of mine employees have their appearance in court next month. been charged with stealing gold worth up to a The City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder is best known million dollars. for being the hub of Australia’s Western The two men, aged 29 and 32, allegedly hid Goldfields region. the gold in bushland after taking it from the Jundee mine, 50 kilometres east of Wiluna. The pair, whose positions at the mining company gave them “unique access to gold,” were nabbed by police when they were found on the way to their hiding place, with yet more gold. Their positions at the mine enabled them to remove the precious metal from the site without fear of detection. Both have been Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Queensland Gas Assets and Pipeline Infrastructure Conference 30-31 March, The Sebel & Citigate King George Square, Brisbane, QLD QGAPI will take a look at the infrastructure and logistics associated with the fast growing CSG/LNG industry in eastern Queensland. The conference will be presented in three parts, beginning with Upstream: well construction and management, water pipeline issues and integrated supply chains. Next is Midstream: transport infrastructure, assets services and an update on the Callide Infrastructure Corridor. Finally, the Downstream segment will discuss future steel requirements, security risks, and modular construction for LNG facilities. For more information visit:

Hard Rock Mine Ventilation 2011 30 March - 01 April, Novotel Langley, Perth, WA Using new technologies and ventilation system strategies, discover the most effective ways to minimise airborne particulates and control temperature, while avoiding excessive power usage. Features of the conference include expert roundtable discussions on legislation related to air quality and ensuring smooth inspections, and several smaller, interactive workshops designed to expand your knowledge base. Also, the Australian Mine Ventilation Awards for On-Site Excellence in hard rock mining will be held for the first time ever. For more information visit:

Smart Substations 2011 12 - 13 April, L’Aqua, Sydney, NSW Smart Substations 2011 will focus on automation, protection, and control developments in bulk supply and zone substations. Some of the topics include proper implementation of IEC 61850, cost control, modular substation construction, online monitoring, upgrading existing substation equipment, and current maintenance strategies. Two practical workshops are offered to reinforce the knowledge learned during the conference. The workshop topics are smart substations and modular substation design. For more information visit:


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Resources and Energy Symposium

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Workforce Planning in Mining 12 - 13 April, Mercure, Brisbane, QLD Aimed at human resources professionals in the mining industry, this event will give delegates the tools necessary to accurately plan and secure a skilled workforce for upcoming projects. Sessions will cover commonwealth initiatives to deal with the skills shortage, the increasing contribution of women in mining, attraction of skilled workers from local communities, the most effective workforce planning software, discovering talent online, creating an effective communication channel, and creating apprenticeship and traineeship programs. For more information visit:

Planning for Effective Shutdown and Turnarounds 13-14 April, Mercure, Brisbane, QLD Does your organisation schedule, plan, and run shutdowns and turnarounds? This conference will help you ensure risk is minimised and results are maximised during your next shutdown. The agenda covers topics like planning for uncertainties, mitigating costs, managing scheduling to reduce shutdown duration, and managing and monitoring multiple overhauls. Several case studies will be reviewed as a source of lessons learned by industry peers as well as serving as benchmarks for performance. For more information visit:

Electricity Price and Market Dynamics Review 2011 28-29 April, Sydney Harbour Marriott, Circular Quay, NSW The event starts off with a hands-on workshop exploring the fundamentals of energy cost auditing for intensive energy users. Attendees will then hear from leading market experts about the future outlook of electricity pricing in Australia. Discussion topics include drivers of electricity prices, green energy incentive schemes, reducing peak demand and minimising price impacts, and price impacts on customer consumption. This event is also an excellent opportunity to network with government representatives, clients, and key industry partners. For more information visit:

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

-By John Boley ... There’s brass. Any of you with ancestors from Yorkshire will recognise that expression. And, says Peter Dyson of Moltoni Energy, it really is true. For example, the garbage in the bin outside your home can provide 14 percent of your electricity needs. Municipal solid waste (MSW) is an energy resource so far ignored in Australia that could be a win-win solution to much of the nation’s energy and emission-reduction needs. It’s carbon tax time, don’t forget. Moltoni Energy is dedicated to developing alternative, renewable energy which will deliver an enhanced and sustainable quality of life for all. The company claims that waste to energy (WTE) plants, unlike solar

and wind energy generation, are “a unique source of base load (continuous) renewable energy generation. By integrating the disposal of waste with the generation of energy, waste to energy plants provide an integrated solution to two of society’s greatest challenges: waste disposal and energy supply, with a minimal greenhouse gas footprint relative to current landfill and landfill to energy practices. With more than 900 thermal waste to energy plants worldwide, there is no doubt that such aspirations are not only achievable but demonstrable in practice.” Moltoni Energy is associated with one of the world’s leading thermal waste to energy technology providAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


ers, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Environmental & Chemical Engineering Co. Ltd. (licence holder for the Martin GmbH grate technology) and is a specialist in delivering sustainable, integrated waste and energy outcomes. “This technology – WTE in general – is a mature market overseas but in Australia we don’t have any,” says Peter, Moltoni Energy’s managing director. “We are bringing a mature


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

product into an immature market.” The first reactions, he says, are questions: what’s the need? What’s the performance of such plants like? What’s the long term effect? “Fortunately, with 900-odd reference sites around the world it’s easy enough for people to make their own assessments.” Most such sites are in Europe, which was always in the forefront of re-

cycling-related progress. When in the 1970s the authorities in Germany managed to gain a consensus to clean up the toxic soup called the Ruhr Valley, home to most of the country’s industry and 20 million people, they set in train a number of programmes, including simple citizen-initiated separation of reclaimable garbage and planned treatment of non-reclaimable muck, that were copied by surrounding countries. A third of the world’s WTE

plants are in Germany. Japan now has more than 60 (20-odd in Tokyo alone) and the US and many other nations are catching on and catching up. According to Peter, China is also embracing the concept and ordering WTE plants at a rate of 15 a year. Indeed, he adds, it appears that Beijing is bent on gaining a superiority in WTE and emissions reductions, having returned from the CopenhaAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Record of Achievement Today, refuse incineration plants play their role in not only protecting the environment but also building a better one. Mitsubishi Waste to Energy Plant continues to offer new techniques that contribute toward the achievement of an environmentally clean society all over the world.

Tuas waste to energy plant, Singapore (552 t/24 h×5 units)

Tuas south waste to energy plant, Singapore (720 t/24 h×6 units)


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Seneko waste to energy plant, Singapore (552 t/24 h×6 units)

Macau waste to energy plant, (288 t/24 h×3 units)

gen summit (end 2009) refusing to agree to having its progress monitored by the rest of the world but quietly determined to do it themselves. So why not here? Peter’s experience is that, once people have access to independent data covering all these reference sites and can see the benefits, “the question rapidly turns round to ‘why are we not doing it?’” The answer is that “we haven’t had to address the issue until now. In Australia we have been quite happy going along with landfills.” Now, though, he says there is a greater awareness among the public that – if you’ll pardon the phrase – landfills are a waste of good waste. The argument is that we should not be such a throw-away society, we should use what we are producing “to create other outcomes that are more beneficial to the environment and to ourselves.”

treatment of muck, which began around the time our ancestors discovered fire, started on a large scale in nearby Nottingham in 1874 (another Pommie saying: “there’s nowt new under t’sun”). From that beginning, plants were built throughout Europe and the US, helping solve the chronic waste issue faced during the Industrial Age, and bringing in the Age of Sanitation. But although these plants helped reduce the amount of waste buried in landfills, they were inefficient, and

Trusted legal advisors Minter Ellison Perth is proud of its ongoing relationship with The Moltoni Group. We support its innovative approach, new developments and its vision for creating an ‘alternative tomorrow’. Glen McLeod Partner +61 8 9429 7587

We started in Yorkshire. Thermal Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Complete Combustion


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


The angle of the hopper and the chute is designed with full consideration for preventing refuse arching. The sealing of the leakage and draught air into the furnace is achieved using a refuse column in a chute.


Based on the refuse calorific value and volume, the speed and stroke of the feeder is automatically controlled to perform stable feeding of refuse.

Automatic Combustion Control

> For controlling DXNs, the combustion temperature is maintained within the range of 850-950째C. > Optimized secondary air supply drastically reduces generation of CO, NOx. > Full-time monitoring of the combustion.

Ash Discharger

> The negative pressure inside the furnace is maintained using a perfect sealing. > The effective dehydration performs 15-22% of the water content of residue and achieves minimum seeping from ash in the ash pit. > The Speed of the Ash Discharger is controlled depending on the ash volume. Steel lining is used on all the sliding surfaces of the ram for high durability.

Remote Control > All of the chute damper, feeder, stoker, grate, clinker roller and ash dischargers are driven by a single hydraulic unit. > The overall system can be operated easily by remote control. > The stoker main parts are lubricated by the integral lubricating system. > Each sliding surface of a grate bar is designed to move with minimum friction in order to operate the hydraulic unit with less energy.

Furnace Structure

> The unique shape of furnace outlet achieves full utilization of radiant heat and high combustion efficiency. > Suspended ceiling with fire-resistant plastic material provides excellent durability. > Compact design of the furnac achieves a minimum footprint for the total equipment.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Record of Achievement in Japan

Itotoyo waste to energy plant (100 t/24 h×2 units)

Oita waste to energy plant (146 t/24 h×3 units)


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Nishinomiya waste to energy plant (175 t/24 h×3 units)

Yokohama Tsurumi waste to energy plant (400 t/24 h×3 units)

their outputs were not harnessed to generate renewable energy.

of WTE plants. First is a realisation that landfills are poor performers from an environmental perspective, both in groundwater discharges and methane emissions as well as “locking-up” valuable land space that could be better utilised. It is estimated that WTE plants can reduce the need for landfills by more than 90 percent.

In the 1920s, Josef Martin (of Martin GmbH) invented the ‘reverseacting grate’ that is based on the premise that fuel ignites more easily when an already existing glowing mass is pushed back underneath it. The concept was developed over time and the grate proved to be the solution to creating efficient com- The second factor is that WTE is a 1185 range of renewable techbustion of MSW. Thist: system +61 3 9645has 4940 f:one +61 3of 9646 e: been in commercial operation since nologies that need to be adopted so Australia meets its renewable en1959. ergy target of 20 percent by 2020 Moltoni argues that three major as set by the RET legislation. It has factors are driving the introduction been estimated that one tonne of Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


waste to energy plants > building a better environment Moltoni Energy is dedicated to developing alternative, renewable energy which will deliver an enhanced and sustainable quality of life for all. Waste to energy plants, unlike solar and wind energy generation, are a unique source of base load (continuous) renewable energy generation. By integrating the disposal of waste with the generation of energy, waste to energy plants provide an integrated solution to two of societies greatest challenges: waste disposal and energy supply, with a minimal greenhouse gas footprint relative to current landfill and landfill to energy practices. With over 600 thermal waste to energy plants worldwide, there is no doubt that such aspirations are not only achievable but demonstrable in practice. Moltoni Energy is very proud to be associated with one of the world’s leading thermal waste to energy technology providers, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Environmental & Chemical Engineering Co. Ltd. (license holder for Martin GmbH grate technology) and we invite you to contact us to see how we can meet your needs in delivering sustainable, integrated waste and energy outcomes.

43 Johnston Street, Port Melbourne VIC 3207 Email:


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Dioxin Control Technologies

The DXNs (dioxins and furans) from MSW incineration is one of the key issues in modern society due to its high toxicity and the potential wide-spread impact on environment and human health. We, MHIEC, have been working on this issue for a long time and have successfully developed a number of technologies in each element of the plant including incineration, flue gas treatment, and ash treatment. Based on MHIEC’s accumulated technologies and know-how developed through long experience in this business, and these highly efficient and optimum systems are well etablished. We are always seeking for environmentally-friendly solutions. Mitsubishi DXNs Control Technologies are the technology for a new age.

MSW processed in a thermal WTE tonne of MSW processed in a WTE plant rather than landfilled reduces plant rather than landfilled reduces De-NOx Bag Filter greenhouse gas emissions by ap- our energy reliance by one barrel of Bag Filter achieves high De-NOx performance oil De-NOx or 0.25 tonne of coal. proximately one tonne of carbon di- Mitsubishi in addition to the conventional functions of the filtering reactor, i.e. treatment of HCI/SOx/Dust. oxide; through avoidance of landfill Mitsubishi De-NOx Bag Filter provides a total solution for emission control for your plant. methane gas generation and avoid- Peter says this is “a fascinating area ance of carbon dioxide generation to be involved in” and it’s moving through the recovery of metals and fast. As recently as 18 months ago there was a “mindset – we shouldn’t reuse of the ash/slag by-products. Thirdly, because WTE recovers the touch this area, people will get upcalorific value from the waste and set about it. What we have now converts that to electricity, it re- is the regulators reforming strateduces reliance on coal-fired power gies and policies for the future to stations, hence adding to our re- include WTE as part of the portfolio sponses to climate change. One – that’s how fast it’s going!” Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


-By Robert Hoshowsky


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


n many countries around the world, mining is a 24/7 business. Millions of dollars and thousands of man hours are invested in keeping mines operational, and companies realise that the success of their mining operations depends on reliable product suppliers to ensure mines run smoothly no matter where they are located. As one of the world’s leading product and services solutions group, ADG Global Supply Limited (ASX:ADQ) has established itself as the first choice for supplying and delivering consumables to many of the world’s mines and resource, commercial, and industrial organisations globally. No matter how remote the location, ADG Global Supply’s extensive and wide-ranging network of operations, facilities, suppliers, dealers and manufactures enables the company to offer an extensive range of resource-related products to clients across four continents, delivered on time and in full.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


$25 Million Contract In recent weeks, the Perth-headquartered company was successfully awarded a three-year contract for global procurement, industrial supply and supply chain management. The contract, with a projected value of $25 million or greater, will see ADG Global Supply Limited manage sourcing, purchasing, supply, logistics and supply chain management activities for Traverse Drilling International Pty Ltd (Traverse Drilling) for the next three years.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

For John Mancini, Managing Director at ADG Global Supply, the contract with Traverse Drilling is a shining example of the strategic objectives he has been working towards since being appointed Managing Director in January, 2010. “ADG’s contract with Traverse Drilling is quite significant for many reasons,” says Mr Mancini, “as this fundamentally changes the way we engage with customers. The key thing for me when I took over this

role was to make sure the business value proposition was authentic, that it was robust, but more importantly, that we were demonstrating capability and value to our customers.” To better serve the interests of ADG Global Supply, its shareholders, and the company’s clients, one of Mr Mancini’s initiatives when he took over as Managing Director was to initiate a 100-day review to carefully examine ADG’s business dynamics, key issues, and the challenges

facing the company resulting from the Global Financial Crisis. The goal was to ensure that ADG’s new life as a public company had a sound strategy based on the company’s roots, and to provide a solid footing in order for the company to achieve sustainable, profitable growth and be prominent in the markets that it serves. The strategy is working. “When you can demonstrate value and capability to your customers, then you ensure that you have a model that achieves growth and

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


sustainability, which is our corporate objective,� comments Mr Mancini.

A Single Point of Contact One of the many reasons ADG was chosen by Traverse Drilling is its ability to coordinate supply and


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

delivery in a successful and timely manner, factors critical for companies involved in mining and other resource sectors. Soon after assuming the Managing Director role, Mr Mancini travelled extensively, gaining insight into supply base business models around the globe.

Some examples were stronger in the procurement, purchasing and sourcing areas, while others were more adept in the logistics side of the supply chain. “Some of the business models claimed to be global, but were in fact a series of offices under single ownership, operating

as individual business in different countries,” says Mr Mancini. “ADG has a very strong proposition: with our customer centric model, clients have a single point of contact, but ADG will coordinate all the activities globally. This is an example of our demonstrated strengths in cusAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

“When you can demonstrate value and capability to your customers, then you ensure that you have a model that achieves growth and sustainability, which is our corporate objective.” – John Mancini, Managing Director, ADG

tomising solutions, with not only sourcing and purchasing, but managing the full supply chain, end to end, from source to site.” The signing of the three-year contract with Traverse Drilling is a testament to ADG’s business model and the company’s abilities to increase operational efficiencies through its streamlined supply and service offer. The ADG Global Supply business model is unique in that it provides an integrated product and service solution. The company operates with four core divisions: Global Procurement, Drilling Fluids and Equipment, Tyre Sourcing and Distribution, and Universal Pumps. Since the company was founded in 1994 as ADG Technology, it has built on its foundation of supplying mining consumables to remote locations around the world, and providing customised solutions to all of its clients. With over 3,000 suppliers across 12 countries worldwide, the company is able to offer its clients a comprehensive array of products and services. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Taking Business to the Next Level Back in 2008, the decision was made to take ADG to the next level of growth, and corporatise the business. It was listed on the Australian Securities Exchange in May of that year, and felt the full impact of the Global Financial Crisis by February, 2009. “The GFC really showed to us the strengths and weaknesses of our business,’” says Mr Mancini of the company, which helped the firm to develop its strategy in January, 2010. “We knew that if we wanted to grow the business to go from a $50 million level to a $100 million-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

plus business, the company had to invest significantly in its own internal system processes and capabilities to give us a strong footprint for growth. I feel very confident we’ve achieved that in a very short time period, which led to us concluding the contract with Traverse, and establish a pipeline and many other opportunities similar to the Traverse contract.” With its broad range of recognised brands, sophisticated supply management systems, and knowledgeable service that is second to none, ADG Global Supply is committed to

keeping many of the world’s mining, industrial, oil and gas companies in business. Through its extensive global network of alliances and dealers, ADG is able to source the right products at the right price, anywhere in the world. The world’s mines never stop, and neither does ADG.

copying anyone else. We’re unique in what we do.”

“After being involved in the business for two years and all the research I have done, I do stand very firm that the ADG business model is unique,” says Mr Mancini. “There’s no one in the business that’s like for like what we are doing. We’re not Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


-By Robert


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


n the aftermath of floodwaters almost five metres deep that damaged much of Queensland over the past few months, insurance companies have received thousands of claims from homeowners and businesses seeking compensation. Many of the nation’s mining and industrial companies were also affected by the natural disaster, and claims for flood-related damages have hit the $2 billion mark.


there were 43,755 claims received as of February 11, 2011. The reason for the increase in the number of claims is being attributed to “large commercial/industrial and mining claims now being reported,� according to the Council. Over $200 million has already been paid to policyholders in Queensland, and the estimated reserved claims value for damage in Victoria is $67 million, resulting from 5,590 claims.

According to revised claim figures released by the Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) for Queensland,

In the months following the floods, a number of reports, recommendations and studies have been pre-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

sented on why the flooding occurred and what can be done to minimise the degree of water damage in the future. Although it is difficult to quantify the amount of flooding, the ICA has voiced its support for the National Disaster Insurance plan recently announced by the Federal Government.

Planning for Future Floods “We believe this review provides a great opportunity for the general insurance industry to contribute to current debate on how Australian communities can be more resilient

to extreme weather events,� said Rob Whelan, Chief Executive Officer for the ICA. For many years, the ICA and its member companies have made representations to all levels of government to find ways to reduce damage from disasters, and help areas of the nation recover faster. Recently, a 10 Point Plan to Tackle Disasters was unveiled. The plan features a wide range of objectives, including simplified and improved insurance product disclosure, the provision of adequate flood data, the removal of insurance taxes, imAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


proving land-use and building standards, and improving community infrastructure with preventative measures such as improved drainage, barrages, and levees. Over the coming months, more figures will come in regarding the real extent of the flood damage to the resource sector. While flooding remains foremost in the minds of many, there are many other reasons for mines and others engaged in the resource sector to file insurance claims, including explosions, wind damage, and bush fires that have ravaged the country over the years.

Hydrology Panel Earlier this year a study prepared on behalf of The Insurance Council of Australia was released: “The Nature and Causes of Flooding in Toowoomba,” an extensive, 78page long report that summarises severe floods that took place in East, West, and Gowrie Creeks in Toowoomba on January 10, 2011. The report is a valuable tool for un-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

derstanding the contributing factors to the flood, both natural and man-made, including areas where stormwater drainage is problematic, surface runoff in urbanised areas, and waterway obstructions like bridges. Following the floods that devastated much of Queensland from December 2010 to January 2011, the ICA formed a “Hydrology Panel.” The panel – made up of three flood hydrologists (men and women who study the occurrence, distribution, circulation and properties of water) – reported on the causes of flooding across the region. Based on rainfall and water level data recorded by a number of federal and state government agencies, the report considers rainfall and other water data leading up to, and during, the floods. These and other studies are valuable not only for the public but also government, insurance companies, and the nation’s resource sector to further an understanding of floods in Queensland.

Mine Revenue Losses Although a number of claims still remain to be settled and final figures tallied, Queensland’s mines – coal in particular – are still working below capacity. A staggering production loss of “at least $5 billion (U.S.)” has been forecast for the state this financial year, with

resulting lost royalties of $400 million. At least thee-quarters remain flooded, as workers are still pumping massive quantities of dirty water in an effort to get operations back to normal, having received special environmental discharge approv-

als from the state government. This technique in itself is controversial, since water pumped from mines is usually treated to reduce contaminants, and additional rainfall would likely mean the mines will fill with water once more. At this time, there are 57 operational coal mines in Queensland, and about 43 others remaining out of commission for the time being. Some well-known companies – including Xstrata, BHP Billiton, and Rio Tinto – were forced to close coal mines as a result of Queensland’s wet season and floods. Of the 57 functioning coal mines, The Queensland Resources Council (QRC) estimates only 1 per cent are in full production, and about 81 per cent are currently operating under restrictions. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Insurance Claims As insurance companies continue to deal with claims related to flooding and cyclone damage, one of the world’s largest insurers is cautioning that recent flooding in Queensland and the recent earthquake in Christchurch is making insurers rethink strategies in Australia and New Zealand. Australian-listed QBE, one of the top 25 insurers and reinsurers worldwide, and other insurance companies have been dealing with the results of several natural disasters, cutting into their yearly profits. This is forcing them to reexamine their


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

businesses, and the risks inherent in insuring areas prone to floods, earthquakes, and cyclones. What this may mean for anyone owning a home or a business in Queensland are stricter insurance terms and conditions, higher deductibles, or even the risk of companies not wanting to insure some businesses at all. To compound the issue, a number of Queensland mines are still dealing with legal action on insurance claims from previous floods dating back to 2007/08 that remain unsettled, along with damage from the most recent rainfalls. Issues at dispute from previous claims include

the extent of financial losses and if the losses were the result of flood or inundation. As clean-up efforts continue at Queensland mines and damage is being assessed, many questions remain unanswered. What will be the total dollar amount of insurance claims? It is simply too early to say, as mine companies are still determining how badly affected their operations are. In addition, stockpiles of coal were smaller this year, as the early wet season caught many mines unaware. There are many other considerations, including damage to expensive equipment – which in

itself will slow the mining process – and whether some mines will be penalised for being unable to fulfill their contracts and deliver coal on time (many mines declared force majeure, nullifying their contractual obligations). Most important of all is, when will some mines receive settlement claims from insurers, and what conditions will be in future contracts? Queensland’s coal mines have been damaged, but they will survive. The product of their livelihood still exists, buried for the time being in flooded tunnels deep underground. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


-By John Boley


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


ustralia in general and WA in particular is not short of indigenous contracting companies, but Ngarda is unusual in being bigger. Ngarda Civil & Mining is the largest Indigenous owned and operated contracting company in Australia. Ngarda retains its traditional links through its shareholders such as the Pilbara-based community foun-

dation, Ngarda Ngarli Yarndu Foundation, and Indigenous Business Australia. Ngarda also benefits from its relationship with Australia’s largest contracting company, Leighton Contractors. This creates great synergies for Ngarda’s own operations. General Manager Darren Lundberg

told us: “Being a mining and civil contractor sets us apart from other indigenous contractors. We have about 330 employees at present – just under half of them are Indigenous.” It is difficult to recruit staff. “It’s the same for us as for others. We have the same frustrations; we aren’t any different although our first port of

call is aboriginal employment – we have some successes and some failures and we keep moving on. There are finite numbers of Aboriginals, they are a small group, so everyone is competing for the same people. There are a lot of Indigenous people out there that are very capable but they are in great demand.” Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


WesTrac, The Equipment Management Company are proud to support Ngarda Civil and Mining. WesTrac are honoured to continue their involvement with Ngarda Civil and Mining. WesTrac have been supporting Ngarda Civil and Mining since 2003 when their initial fleet of 785C trucks was delivered to the Pannawonica site they had secured. Since their establishment in 2000 as a small contractor in the Pilbara, their knowledge and

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MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

experience has seen Ngarda Civil and Mining build a substantial civil and mining fleet with numerous projects and blue-chip clients. WesTrac look forward to continuing their working relationship with Ngarda Civil and Mining.

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humble beginnings and a

big vision

Ngarda’s goal is to ensure that local Indigenous communities are given maximum opportunity to participate in the economic development activities within their regions. The company is widely recognised as an industry leader in recruiting, training, employing, and retaining local Indigenous people within its workforce and provides its employees with training to develop their capacity to improve workplace prospects and gain broader benefits in their lives. The company has trained hundreds of Indigenous men and women who

Safety is our number one value

are now working with Ngarda, or with many of its major clients and elsewhere in the industry. In addition, there is a local industry participation policy that targets local contractors who are keen to become involved in Ngarda’s projects; this policy played a major role in the establishment of the Pilbara Aboriginal Contractors’ Association of which the firm was a founding member. “We are not profit driven by any means,” explained Darren. “We have to be commercially successful but we do have a purpose – our shareholders have given it to us and we Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011




MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

through enterprise,

work and training

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Gap Ridge Accommodation Village

Gap Ridge Accommodation Village Project Location Project Client Contract Value Duration Project Summary

Gap Ridge

Karratha, Western Australia Woodside $212M 2007 - 2009 The Ngarda Alliance – a joint venture between Ngarda and Leighton Contractors - was awarded the contract to construct a state-of-the-art, 2133-person accommodation village in Karratha to house Woodside workers on the Pluto Project. The Gap Ridge project involved the installation and construction of infrastructure such as roads, electrical, water, sewage and communications, as well as the construction of building foundations and the installation of pre-fabricated buildings. During the project’s two-year lifespan, no lost time injuries were recorded and only two medical treatments were required. The Total Recordable Case Frequency Rate (TRCFR) on the project was 2.3; a tribute to The Alliance’s commitment to quality safety management. As well as safety, program and quality KPI’s, the project focused on the employment and development of local Indigenous people from the Karratha and Roebourne areas. The Alliance maintained an Indigenous employment rate average of 20% throughout the life of the project, with a peak rate of 35%; effectively employing more than 70 Indigenous people in a peak workforce total of approximately 300. The Alliance and the project team were committed to maximising local Indigenous participation, including engaging local Indigenous sub-contractors and supporting the ongoing employment of Indigenous people following completion of the project in July, 2009. The project team faced a range of challenges including efficient project management and coordination while residents simultaneously moved into the newly built village. The project team achieved the following: •

It was announced ‘Safety, Health and Environment Contractor’ for the month of June, 2009, by Foster, Wheeler WorleyParsons;

The team were finalists in the Master Builders’ Association Awards;

The team were finalists for Teamwork Excellence in the Leighton Excellence Awards; and

the team won a WA Engineering Excellence Award for Engineering for Regional Communities, and is a national finalist in the category

Ngarda Civil & Mining Pty Ltd ABN 52 096 210 552

T: 61 (08) 6272 5000 F: 61 (08) 6272 5099

PO Box 496, Belmont, WA 6984 • 185 Great Eastern Highway, Belmont, WA 6104 “Strength through enterprise, work and training”


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

have to live by our values and our purpose, which is to improve the lives of Aboriginal people through employment and wealth creation. That’s our charter – Aboriginal employment, development of Aboriginal people and of other Aboriginal businesses” as well as all the other things a contractor has to do. Major community initiatives include “Kicking Goals” and “Shooting Goals” involving a joint venture between Ngarda, BHP Billiton, the Pilbara Development Commission,

the Swan Districts Football Club, and the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Both programmes are run in conjunction with Pilbara senior high schools with the aim of engaging local Indigenous youth and encouraging greater attendance, participation and learning outcomes within a school environment. They also encourage personal development and assist students in realising their full potential in both the sporting and educational arenas.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


local Supporting

Community Benefits


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

The ‘Shooting Goals’ program has a specific focus on Indigenous young women while the ‘Kicking Goals’ program has a specific focus on Indigenous young men.

more telecommunications work, following a successful project installing fibre-optic cable from Perth to Geraldton with Vision Stream, and to expand into building services.

Ngarda also provides significant support for a number of local Indigenous youth to compete in the ‘Western Desert Shield’ which is a major football event held at Subiaco Oval in Perth every two years. Ngarda actively recruits Indigenous youth to play for the Ngarda Goannas in the event that is attended by AFL and WAFL selectors to recruit potential talent for the major clubs. In addition, Ngarda sponsors and supports many other community projects including the National Aboriginal and Islander Day of Celebrations, local cultural events, local Indigenous women’s projects, and local educational and training initiatives, providing ‘in-kind-support’ to many Indigenous communities throughout the Pilbara region.

“We are a growing company, we have a good strategic plan going forward; this year we expect to achieve $140150 million turnover and in the next three years we hope to get up to about $250m. The plan is to expand within WA, but also Northern Territory and South Australia are expansion zones in the next few years.”

Darren said Ngarda is looking for Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


-By Aleisha Parr


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


n the aftermath of the recent Global Financial Crisis, contracting businesses have been struggling to keep afloat in the face of time delays on most projects and the outright cancellation of many others. It has been an exercise in endurance, difficult to survive even by those companies who have a strong financial backing. Now, with the recent disasters that Australia has suffered, an extraordinary need persists for skilled labourers and full-capability construction companies to step up and not only answer to the delayed works from the last three years, but

also to begin work on new and evolving projects. AGC, a construction company operating in Western Australia with a strong focus on plant-based industrial activity and oil and gas work, having spent the last decade evolving its service capabilities (from its initial operations as a privately owned insulation and fabrication company to become a fully vertically integrated publicly listed construction and contracting company), has positioned itself to offer a variety of solutions to its clients’ current needs. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

A strong player in the construction market – serving such clients as BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Woodside – AGC’s success in the industry is in part due to its focus on vertical integration. The company prides itself on its ability to work with its clients throughout the entire process of a job in order to provide a well-orchestrated and cost effective product solution which meets all requirements.

One of the greatest sources of anxiety for many clients in plant-based industrial construction is ensuring that the components will effectively fit together and be safety and properly installed. Increasingly, plant modularisation is employed, so to ensure that the client is able to get exactly what is required, and exactly the way it is required to fit and work, AGC engaging in all stages of the process from the design and fabrication of the modular units, through to the transportation and site assembly - a fine example of AGC’s vertical integration utilised to maximise client cost and schedule certanity. The area, however, where AGC has seen most gain has been in its recent recruitment efforts, effectively doubling its staff from approximately 1500 to nearly 3000 over the course of last year. Says AGC’s Group Business Development Manager Laith Amin: “We grew - very aggressively - our staff Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Rio Tinto – Cape Lambert Client: SKM Operator: Rio Tinto Location: Cape Lambert, WA Contract Value: AU$25 million Contract Period: July 2010–Current Peak Manning: 90 (forecast)

Scope of Work: The contract comprises of the implementation of a replacement iron ore product screen building located at Cape Lambert in North Western Australia. The scope of work includes the fabrication and construction of a new product screen building including two double deck screens, feed and discharge

in 2010 but that was a reflection of an enormous amount of confidence that the board had in the growth capability of the company because we did not have a huge amount of project work last year, but we knew it was coming. And we knew we would be really well positioned to deliver it.” This remarkable leap of faith has helped the company to acquire some really top talent, including new project managers, senior leaders, a


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Commercial Director and an Execu tive General Manager of Operations. “All these top people were available last year,” explains Amin, “but this year and for the next three or four years, it will be much more difficult to get them . . . We built our people capability last year, so it was a bold thing to do but that’s the way the leadership felt about the opportunity for the company.” AGC also has plans for its future growth within the industry, and has

conveyors and associated transfer station consisting of 840 tonne of structural steel, platework, conveyor systems and installation of 150 tonnes of client supplied mechanical equipment. The project also includes modifications to the existing plant to incorporate the new structures. Completion is expected in May 2011.



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Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


“We grew - very aggressively - our staff in 2010, a reflection of an enormous amount of confidence that the board had in the growth capability of the company... we knew it was coming. And we knew we would be really well positioned to deliver it.� - Laith Amin, Group Business Development Manager, AGC


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Pluto LNG Project Client: Foster Wheeler WorleyParsons Operator: Woodside Energy Limited Location: Burrup Peninsula, Karratha, Western Australia Contract Value: AU$120 million Contract Period: April 2009 – Current Total Project Peak Manning: 735 Scope of Work: Consists of two elements: Site A Mechanical Erection (including Jetty Mechani cal Work) and Site B Mechanical Erection – Trunkline Offshore Terminal. AGC’s scope includes the mechanical works associated with the installation of structural steel and process piping, installation of mechanical equipment, pre-assembled pipe racks, modules and structures, testing of pipework and associated activities related to the Pluto LNG process facility. An additional contract was awarded to include the construction of an Effluent Treatment Plant which includes the installation of equipment and pre-assembled package units, piping and structural steel work. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


developed what it hopes to be a very reliable four or five year forward looking visibility of its project environment in order to translate that into predictions regarding required staff and labourers as well as market growth trends or shortages. Says Amin, “We look at that value chain very carefully and we spot areas where we think there are gaps or where our clients tell us that they have needs or where they perceive shortages to be and we provide a solution to that.”


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Using its in-house customer management relationship program, InSight, AGC is able to acquire, develop, track, knowledge share and manage significant and deep client relationships, essential to its development strategy. Through the use of this program, AGC can “know what [a clients’] culture is so we are able to recruit people that are compatible with the culture of our clients. We know what their forward project ambitions are so we’re able to go out and make acquisitions and build our capability so that we can sup-

port them.” In 2009, AGC identified that there would soon be a shortage in the industry of scaffolding capabilities in industrial plant construction throughout West Australia, and therefore that providing scaffolding would represent a key growth opportunity for the company. After acquiring a scaffolding contractor company called Modern Access Services (MAS), AGC soon became WA’s largest scaffolding contractor, providing scaffolding solutions for WA and Southeast Asia.

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MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

recruitment specialists has been responsible for the recent increase in hires over the last year, and continues to source thousands of qualified tradespeople for its on-call database.

contract that makes us different for our clients.”

“They’re building bigger plants than they ever have in their history and we are building plants that are bigger than we ever have in our history,” explains Amin. “We know that that is complex and we know that we have to be solution driven and it’s the fact that we are focused on the solution and not necessary the

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


-By John Boley


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


he furore over Royal Dutch Shell’s plan to develop the Prelude liquefied natural gas venture and explore for oil and gas in the Exmouth basin off the north-west coast of Western Australia – within 50km of the world-famous Ningaloo reef – has again polarised industry and society on the issues of the extent to which natural wonders should be protected from or subservient to resource exploitation. Ningaloo was the scene of one of the biggest environmental battles in Western Australia in recent years when conservationists led by author Tim Winton stopped a tourist resort being built in 2004.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


The United Nations World Heritage Committee is expected to soon finalise its assessment of a nomination for Ningaloo put forward last year by the federal and West Australian governments and, predictably, environmentalist groups were quick to voice their displeasure at Shell’s plans. Shell’s application to explore in permit area WA-384-P comes hard on the heels of the Montara oil spill and


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

BP’s Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico. With unusual transparency, the company itself admits there is a possibility of “minimal damage” to the reef in case of an accident or spill. A leak of the size that recently hit the Montara oil well off the northern WA coast in the Timor Sea would almost certainly cause significant damage to the Ningaloo environment. Shell itself is sure that a worst-case sce-

nario (defined as 70,000 gallons per day escaping onto the seabed for 77 days) would see oil mainly travel away from or parallel to the shallower coastal reef where whales migrate. Yet it acknowledged that areas that still had a “low probability” of being impacted were the middle and southern sections of the North West Cape, the islands at the entrance to Shark Bay (Dirk Hartog, Bernier and Dorre Island), the coastline along the Zuytdorp cliffs and the Abrol-

hos Islands. Shell must receive “all necessary environmental and safety approvals” before it can proceed with the drilling, Claire Wilkinson, a Perth-based spokeswoman for the company, told WA Now. Timing of the drilling at the Australian gas prospect will depend on rig availability and may occur any time through the third quarter of 2012, Shell said in documents filed on March 4 on the Australian EnvironAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

ment Department’s website. Shell had received Australian government approval for the project last November. The controversy centres on a plan to drill an initial test well to a depth of 5,650m near Ningaloo, which is 260km long and is Australia’s largest fringing coral reef. It is the only large reef positioned very close to a landmass and is known for its seasonal feeding concentrations of whale sharks, which feed there during March to June. The reef is also rich in coral and other marine life. During the winter months, the reef is part of migratory routes for dolphins, dugongs, manta rays and humpback whales. The beaches of the reef are an important breeding ground of the loggerhead, green and hawksbill turtles. WWF’s Paul Gamblin told media the application went to the heart of a much “bigger picture” about the divide between tapping much needed resources and nature tourism. “There’s a real clash in the value of

natural assets and oil and gas in the region. Montara was further offshore and the liability cannot be underestimated. Only luck prevented the oil reaching the Kimberley shore. Fifty kilometres is nothing for an oil spill. The environment is more and more coming under pressure, not just from oil spills. The bigger story

is how do we protect, are we really protecting our most fragile and precious asset?” It was important that environmental assessments were done outside the marine park, which currently had not ever been undertaken, to determine what should be off limits, he added. Seismic vibrations impacted on sea turtles, fish and Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


An image from Shell's application showing what it claims would be a worst-case oil leak scenario off the WA coast. whales that frequent the area, famous for the world’s largest so-called “fringing” reef, located just metres offshore rather than far out to sea as in the case of the Great Barrier Reef. Gamblin said the federal government had so far provided “ad hoc” approvals for exploration, based on too little independent scientific research, at the “rate of knots”.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

But not everyone in the region shares the WWF’s worries. The Shire of Exmouth believes the proposal will not affect tourism. Shire president Ronnie Fleay says the project should not come as a surprise because Shell has kept the community well informed. She says there are already operations closer to the reef than the Shell proposal. “I don’t think it will have any

Mid-2010, business and community groups in Exmouth renewed calls for the Ningaloo coast’s nomination for World Heritage Listing to be scrapped. Barry Sullivan from the Exmouth Chamber of Commerce and Industry argued the listing would hamper development and make little difference to tourism.

Then acting premier Kim Hames (now deputy premier) said the state government would do all it can to protect Ningaloo reef in the midst of the expanding oil and gas industry. The state has a role in the approvals process and will protect the region. “We want to make sure that Ningaloo reef as a system is protected and we have concerns because of the oil spills in parts of the world,” he said. Federal resources minister Martin Ferguson said Shell would follow “stringent processes in place to ensure all exploration for, and extraction of, petroleum resources were undertaken in a safe and environmentally responsible manner.”

“The fear is I guess the history of places like Shark Bay who have stagnated since their nomination,” he said. “There’s been very little, if any increase in tourism. The issue is that this is our last hurrah, if we do not get a fair and equitable hearing in this then the nomination will go ahead as it stands.”

The industry beyond Australia’s coastline is watching the development of the Ningaloo case with interest. If the hue and cry dies down – and more importantly if Shell succeeds in exploring without damaging the reef – the cause of co-existence between resources and environment will have been advanced.

impact to be honest, none of the others have, in fact tourists are quite fascinated to stand on our hill where our lighthouse is and to be able to see the flaring out there on the platforms,” she said. “I don’t think the tourists in general will even know they are there.”

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

-By Aleisha Parr

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



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One visit to the rather isolated NSW city of Broken Hill and you’ll discover that it’s anything but the dusty old mining village of yore. While the city still boasts a thriving mining industry, it has also evolved to become a cultural and social mecca, actively developing interests in the tourism and film industries. With

and zinc deposits anywhere in the world. In fact, BHP Billiton - one of the world’s largest mining companies today - has roots in the area as the Broken Hill Proprietary Company.

its vibrant red landscape in contrast with its vast cerulean skies, Broken Hill’s isolation becomes not a hindrance, but a beckoning for explorers and artists alike.

Hill in its early years through its extraordinary trade union activities. Issues we now take for granted, like workers’ compensation or standard work hours – were fought and resolved there. Through these struggles, Broken Hill became a leader in the labour movement, helping to support the formation in 1923 of the Barrier Industrial Council, a

Broken Hill has long been one of Australia’s most important mining towns, with Charles Rasp’s 1883 discovery of the largest silver, lead

Many of the industrial standards we employ today were forged in Broken

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


White’s Mineral Art Gallery & Living Mining Museum A retired miner and Broken Hill resident, Ken “Bushy” White is a curator and artist, utilising the city’s own minerals to create vivid and culturally significant works of art. Using original mine timber, Bushy constructed the replica mine shaft off the side of his home in Broken Hill, offering tours to help visitors appreciate the dangers and beauties inherent to a hundred year old mineshaft typical of the area. The museum also displays rare mining artefacts, underground memorabilia and mine site models. In his artwork, which is displayed throughout the museum, Bushy uses minerals he has collected over the years from the area, crushes them and applies them to canvas to replicate old mining photographs, depicting the rich history of the area and its residents.

“There’s around about

400-odd minerals that we get out of Broken Hill mines,” he says. “In this particular art that I use, there’s around about 100 colours of minerals that I’ve used in the art of Broken Hill.”


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

group of 18 trade unions and one of the city’s most influential organisations. “The mining companies after that started becoming very, very good corporate citizens,” Broken Hill’s Mayor, Wincen Cuy, recounts. “They produced parks, events, and sporting activities, and grounds were developed and maintained during that period of time. From an early peri-

od of time they actually would help green the city, so it was a very, very prosperous and great time to live in Broken Hill.” Just two years ago though, with the global collapse in metal prices, it looked as though the end was near for long time mining city Broken Hill. Losing nearly half of its workforce with the closure of Rasp Mine in 2008, the community hit a Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Broken Hill Set to Host Its First ‘Resources and Energy Symposium’ May 22 to 25 of this year will see delegates from Australia, China and India engaged in all areas of the resource sector coming together in Broken Hill for the annual Resources and Energy Symposium. This year marks the first time that Broken Hill will host the event, which provide a venue for discussing issues facing the resources sector, future predictions, investment opportunities and changes to the industry itself. In a recent interview in the Barrier Daily Truth, Nick Sheard, Executive Chairman of Carpentaria Resources, a key sponsor of the event, comments: “I think it’s a great idea. One, it’s good for the city and the surrounding exploration area but there’s another major aim and that’s to get a large symposium that is looking at not just Broken Hill but Australia. Forming it in Broken Hill is great as it’s one of the largest mining areas Australia’s ever had with BHP and Rio and we really want to make it an international focus.”

Line of Lode Miner’s Memorial and Visitor’s Centre Crowning the 7.3 km Line of Lode, this surreal structure of steel, concrete and glass pays homage to the more than 700 miners who lost their lives while working under the city in Broken Hill’s numerous mines in operation since the early 1800s. Funded in 2000 by a Commonwealth Federation Grant and designed by Christina Carayanides under commission to the University of South Australia, this site has become as much an icon as it is a stunning reflection of the city’s reverence for all those who have dedicated their lives to the mining industry which has so powerfully shaped the lives of all citizens of Broken Hill, past and present.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

lull, looking outside of the mining industry for sustenance. But now, with a full-on revitalisation effort involving a number of exploration and mining companies, the future once again looks encouraging for the mining industry in Broken Hill.

Broken Hill. Whilst we are doing that, we are still trying to diversify our industry into tourism, into the film sector, and trying to make sure that we are not necessarily only reliant on exploration and mining but we do diversify.�

Says Mayor Cuy: “We quite obviously are one of the world’s leaders in developing, and the mineralisation in and around this area is just phenomenal - it really is phenomenal. So people are once again starting to explore and develop in and around

Mayor Cuy also reports that a number of junior development companies and prospecting companies have been exploring the city and its surrounding region for everything from tin to iron ore and oxides some with significant discoveries.

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Carpentaria Explorations has recently announced its discovery of 1.4 billion tonnes of iron ore at Hawson’s Iron Prospect, 60 km southwest of Broken Hill. The resulting potential project, currently entering a bankable feasibility stage, could mean the creation of a mine with a fifteen year plus life and magnetite production starting at 6 million tonnes a year in 2014, eventually increasing to up to 20 million tonnes a year.

to see the possibility of several new magnetite mines along the Braemar Iron Formation, each potentially hosting several hundreds of millions of tonnes of magnetite rich siltstones, near a centre better known for its historic lead, silver and zinc production.”

Even the historic Rasp Mine has been given a new lease on life, having achieved final development approval on its new major expansion Minotaur Explorations, a smaller project by the NSW Government on company in Broken Hill, has called Quarter February 2nd of this year. As part page advert Generic Broken Hill City Councilv2:Layout 1 1/03/11 8:25 AM Pag for smaller magnetite project owners on the Braemar Iron Formation PROSPECTUS FOR THE ISSUE to join together in their search for OF SHARES iron ore, to develop a “super iron TO OPEN SOON plant”, which could save billions TO REGISTER FOR A PROSPECTUS CALL 1800 858 505 of dollars in up-front project costs while delivering up to 100 years of regional mining. Sponsoring Broker 0420 353 382

Said Andrew Woskett, Minotaur’s Managing Director in a press release dated February 2, 2011: “Should our projections become fact, as explorers work towards defining resources and reserves, it is reasonable then

Novus Capital Limited AFS Licence No 238168 Keith Taylor Level 24, Royal Exchange Building 56 Pitt Street, Sydney NSW 2000 PHONE. +61 (02) 9375 0104 FAX. +61 (02) 9247 4844 EMAIL. WEB. Or

COMMISSIONERS GOLD LIMITED Robert McCauley Box 5100, West Chatswood NSW 1515 PHONE. +61 (02) 9410 3445 FAX. +61 (02) 9410 0458 EMAIL. WEB. Managing Director 0432 327 015

Applications can only be made on the Application Form accompanying the Prospectus.


Come and say g'day to us at our Stand Number 29 at the Broken Hill Resources & Energy Symposium May 23-25

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


of the expansion, CBH Resources plans on building its own processing plant, with construction set to commence in March 2011 and operations anticipated to begin mid-2012. The company expects to directly employ 160 workers once in operation, with approximately twice that amount gaining employment through flow-on effects. In a recent news report in the Barrier Daily Truth, Professor Ian Plimer, a Director with CBH Resources and a wellrespected geologist from the area, reports: “I think the Rasp mine tells


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

us what everyone already knows that the orebody has a lot of juice left in it . . . We're certainly very happy to be keeping Broken Hill going as a mining town." With all of these recent developments, it seems certain that Broken Hill will continue to thrive in the mining industry for years to come. The area is still rich in resources, and is ready to grow with the proper investments nurturing that process. Mayor Cuy asserts that, with the continuation of mining activities spreading throughout the entire region surrounding Broken Hill, the city can become a hub of

With an assortment of quality coffee houses, art galleries and boutique shops, the downtown core of Broken Hill has become a thriving cultural destination. Boasts Mayor Cuy, “I’m really excited about our future . . . it’s a place that every Australian should visit because they won’t be disappointed.”

activity as well as a provider of the core infrastructure, which would be a great benefit to its future growth as a dynamic community.

He adds, “We’re looking forward to our future, but we never, ever forget our past.”

“Not only do you have that, from a mining perspective,” recounts Mayor Cuy, “but you can actually encourage your partner to come because we have a huge art opportunity in Broken Hill as well. We have more art galleries than we have pubs in Broken Hill. From a mining town that used to be renowned for its ‘rough and tough’ we are now a very sophisticated community.” Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

-By John Boley ... in a big pond. Given the vast areas of water surrounding our continent-country, you would perhaps expect it to be an ultra-competitive place to do business. But according to Simon Giessauf, general manager – corporate at Maritime Constructions, it’s not quite as shark-infested as one might think. “Sure it’s a huge area of water, but marine infrastructure has been on

the increase over the last ten years or so – there is a lot of growth in the industry at the moment. It’s a highly specialist field, and in fact there are not actually a lot of contractors in it.” Maritime Constructions is a specialist marine infrastructure contractor based in South Australia with more than 20 years of experience in marine construction. The company pro-

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

vides a broad spectrum of services, such as wharf and jetty design and construction, capital and maintenance dredging, aids to navigation, underwater pipelines, breakwaters and marine asset management and maintenance. Much of the work carried out is remedial and most of it is environmentally sensitive – especially in these conservation-conscious times. Maritime is well aware of the challenges it faces and fully accredited to deal with them. “We take the Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


In excess of 5 million man hours at sea.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


environmental side of the business very seriously,” says Simon. “Senior members of staff enjoy the marine environment themselves, from a fishing, swimming and diving point of view. It’s a true underlying value that we respect the environment we work in and look to see it preserved accordingly.” Working in the marine and coastal environment presents special challenges. “We consistently and continuously work towards minimising the impact of our operations on the


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

environment to meet strict guidelines and community expectations. Our intent is matched only by our performance, which has been recognised with four CCF and Case Earth awards for dredging the troubled River Murray mouth and the River Torrens, as well as the design and construction of the Rapid Bay Jetty and the Semaphore Park offshore breakwater.” Maritime’s success over the years is attributed to a “dedicated, motivated and experienced team; the com-

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pany’s greatest asset. Our in-house, accredited Maritime Industry Training Centre has been instrumental in growing the specialised skills of our team.” People are the major asset, says Simon. “Due to the equipment involved, the working conditions and the challenges of working on the water and carrying out construction work, it’s a very specialised industry. You need key people with a long history of understanding the marine environment and the changing conAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


40 million litres of fuel bunkered and transferred over water during marine project operations without environmental incident.

ditions, and with a passion for the work, because it is a truly challenging and exciting environment.” It’s not all ‘messing about in boats’, exactly, but Maritime staff do tend to exhibit an affinity with the ocean. “Yes, there is a degree of ‘love of the sea’. It’s not all happy sailing but there is an underlying passion from people who work in and around the ocean – coupled with respect for the water. An understanding of how the the Proven PerforMer

A cross-section of projects delivered successfully by Maritime Constructions:

■ Collaborated Design and construction of the Rapid Bay Jetty, for Bardavcol ■ Installation of intake and outfall underwater pipelines and structures for the Adelaide Desalination Pilot Plant, for Water Technologies ■ Construction of Semaphore Park Offshore Breakwater, for the South Australian Department of Environment and Heritage (DEH) ■ Dredging of the River Murray Mouth, for SA Water ■ Installation of Yarraville Shoal Beacon, Spencer Gulf, for the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA)


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

■ Dredging and piling for the new marina at Outer Harbour, for the Royal South Australian Yacht Squadron (RSAYS) ■ Sinking of HMAS Hobart near Wirrinna as an artificial reef, for the Royal Australian Navy ■ Refurbishment and Construction for the extension of the Portland Trawler Wharf, for Akron Roads ■ Ship-lift modifications, Techport naval industry hub, Osborne, for the Australian Submarine Corporation (ASC) ■ Ongoing dredging/sand replenishment at Holdfast Shores and West Beach (DEH) ■ Piling for Largs North Marina, for Bellingham

marine environment can react is vital to safety and ensuring our staff are not put at risk.” Maritime boasts of its design-andconstruct expertise but business is “a real mix. We have been successful in a number of design-and-construct contracts in the last 12 months and that’s something we have worked hard towards, but a lot of our work is for state and local governments, which is often ‘construct-only’. But

we do pride ourselves on being a very innovative contractor that can have a large degree of input into a smart design in order to create constructability and value for money for clients.” Maritime does supply “some support services and operations to much larger contractors in the oil and gas industries but our primary focus is traditional marine infrastructure work. However,” adds Simon, “there are Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Process Our people are supported by bestpractice processes and systems to ensure that what they deliver is exactly to the requirements specified by each client on each project. Maritime Constructions operates within an Integrated Management System (IMS) incorporating requirements for Quality, Safety and Environment in accordance with Australian/New Zealand Standard ISO 9001:2000 and statutory and legislative requirements. Maritime Constructions’ IMS adopts a ‘Process Approach’ which is designed to enhance customer satisfaction by meeting customer requirements – a simple enough equation considering it is the core principle on which the company was founded. The diagram (below) illustrates the Continuous

Improvement/ Quality Management component of our Integrated Management System. Our IMS requires us to develop a Quality Management Plan (QMP) and associated Inspection and Test Plan (ITP) for every project we undertake to ensure our clients get exactly what they have asked for. The process verifies, validates, monitors, inspects and tests every phase of every project. Each aspect of the review cycle is supplemented by client audits to ensure that plans are being implemented in accordance with the specifications and expectations documented at the beginning of the process.

Satis fact ion

The company has an extensive fleet of vehicles that is “predominantly for our own use. It’s mainly very specialised, but there are some pieces we can hire out – simple barges etc. But 90 percent of our fleet is for our internal


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

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exciting oil and gas projects around Australia, like Gorgon or Gladstone and so forth; they are certainly exciting and there is room on those projects for a contractor like us. We are glad to see such projects happening around Australia.”

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use. We are a builder and constructor, not a hire company as such.” In general, Maritime is going places and pleased about it. “We’re very good – happy and excited and all is well.” Jobs come from all round Australia – including one about as far as you can get from Adelaide in ‘Western Australia’s northernmost town’, Wyndham, where the company is working for East Kimberley shire on the Anton’s Landing project – and Simon does not rule out working even fur-

ther afield. Maritime’s business is “based on core values of integrity and honesty, with a partnering approach to our clients, respect for our employees, providing a healthy and safe environment for them to work in, training and upskilling to give opportunities for our people to advance. We are excited about the future. The industry Australia-wide has a very bright future and we are looking to add as much value as possible.” Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



round the world, the state of New South Wales remains legendary for its vast mineral wealth; in fact, no state has played a more active role in Australia’s rich mining history than NSW. Actively mined for hundreds of years, NSW’s resource legacy in fact goes back much further, to the time of Aboriginal Australians over 40,000 years ago. Many communities in the state started their lives as small mining towns, and today, the industry is thriving and shows no signs of slowing down. Representing over 70 mining businesses in the state is the New South Wales Minerals Council Ltd (NSWMC), a not-for-profit, peak industry association. Serving as a united voice for best practice


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

-By Robert Hoshowsky

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


in NSW, the organisation represents the state’s $14 billion mining industry and associated minerals explorers, producers, operators, and others whose services relate to mining. Committed to safe mining conditions, growth, fostering vital communities, and environmental responsibility, the NSWMC is also dedicated to mining education, especially in the area of

“What we’ve been arguing for years is that government needs to show leadership, and actually start to get into the business of strategic land use planning.” -Dr Nikki Williams, Chief Executive Officer of the New South Wales Minerals Council


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Mutawintji hand stencils. Photo by Pat Laughton DECCW

strategic land use planning, a hotly debated issue between all political parties and stakeholders.

Strategic Planning “[Strategic land use planning] probably is the defining issue for the mining industry in NSW,” says Dr Nikki

Williams, Chief Executive Officer of the New South Wales Minerals Council. As the most heavily regulated industry in NSW, mining is constantly scrutinised, yet Dr Williams feels there has been a lack of leadership by the current government when it comes to addressing concerns from communities located in and near mining regions. With plans to double production in the coal sec-

Axe Grinding Stones. Photo by Hilton Naden, DECCW

tor over the next five years, these concerns are growing louder daily, as the need to address strategic land use becomes more urgent. “A lot of those mines are operating next door to each other,” says Dr Williams, “so consequently, there’s a cumulative

impact of such intense activity taking place in quite narrow geographic regions, and the government simply has not addressed the impact of this kind of growth adequately.” The lack of discussion over time regarding strategic land use has led to tensions between mining and other regional industries, such as wine-making, horse breeding, and agriculture. While many commu-

Daruka Axe Quarry, Tamworth. Photo by Bruce Cohen, DECCW

nities support mining in NSW – an industry that generates approximately 355,000 direct and indirect jobs, and contributes more than $2 billion annually in taxes and royalties – others remain concerned over the potential impact of mining on health and the environment. As a result of lack of acAustralian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


tion over land use, tensions have understandably escalated. “It has had, at different times, an almost war-like feel,” comments Dr Williams, “and that is a reflection of very poor policy, and very poor planning. What we’ve been arguing for years is that government needs to show leadership, and actually start to get into the business of strategic land use planning, identifying priorities for different areas in NSW, and kinds of developments, so that it gives some kind of certainty to all land users and land holders, and paint a picture about what the future might look like in any given region.” Many mining activities are being examined, but none more so than coal mining. Although NSW also produces an extensive range of metallic and industrial minerals, coal remains the major mineral resource mined in the state, accounting for about 40 per cent of the nation’s total coal exports, which comes from 63 operational mines (as of 2009-10), with


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

another 30 developments underway. Strategic land use planning – which the NSWMC has been actively calling for over several years – is needed to minimise land use conflicts, maximise the capacity of regional communities and economies, and provide clarity for communities, government, business, and industries regarding present and future development. “You’re not going to have a sustainable and prosperous industry if you don’t have that kind of planning and regulatory certainty that allows for the kind of major capital investments that are typically made in the minerals sector,” says Dr Williams, adding that priorities must be clearly identified and based on solid, factual information to ensure environmental, social, and economic values in NSW are maximised.

Dust and Water In New South Wales, coal mining has been taking place for 150 years. While there is a variety of mining techniques available, one that is often

used in open-cut mining. Also known as surface mining, open-cut mining – which accounts for 64 per cent of saleable coal production in NSW – is especially effective when mineral deposits are close to the surface. While more effective than underground mining methods, concerns over opencut mining range from excessive dust production to possible disturbance of underground aquifers and other water systems. “The impacts of dust and water are probably the two biggest issues for mining,” says Dr Williams. For centuries, coal has remained one of the state’s prime resources. The Sydney-Gunnedah Basin – extending along the eastern margin of Australia and covering over 15,000 square kilometers – is renowned for its highquality black coal, dating back millions of years. Today, 89 per cent of NSW’s electricity comes from coal-fired power stations, and there are five major coalfields in the Sydney-Gunnedah Basin, including the Hunter. As the largest coal-producing region Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


in the state, coal deposits in the Hunter are at shallow depths under 300 metres, making the area prime for cost-effective open-cut mining. Some communities are concerned about dust and air quality, and the New South Wales Minerals Council is active in educating and informing locals through the Upper Hunter Air Quality Monitoring Network. Online in real time, 24 hours a day, easy to understand information about air quality is accessible through two recently installed monitoring stations in Singleton and Muswellbrook. The initiative, a partnership involving the community, local miners, industry, government, and power generators, will eventually see 14 independent air monitoring stations, operated by the NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water. “If the dust levels are exceeded, they can determine their responses accordingly,” says Dr Williams. “Actually having real, credible, comprehensible data available at your fingertips


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

should dispel a lot of the concerns that many people have.” In addition to obtaining data, there are efforts in place to minimise dust from mines and adjust coal dumping heights, as well as trials for the use of synthetic dust suppressants on haul roads, and other technical initiatives. In addition, the Upper Hunter Mining Dialogue is underway. The region’s coal producers, in an open-ended discussion with the community about the role of mining and potential impacts on the economy and the region’s future, have generated vast amounts of material. To date, the discussions have resulted in over 60,000 words covering 1,600 issues raised by the community. Once the independent material is compiled, it will be presented to stakeholders later this year. “Communities are increasingly looking at the industry in a region, as opposed to an individual company or an individual mine in a region,” says Dr Williams. “So with that in mind, we decided that we needed to have

a new kind of conversation with our mining communities, and that we would commence that dialogue in the Upper Hunter Region.” While the New South Wales Minerals Council doesn’t have an agenda or expected outcome regarding the talks, they want to learn from community members, identify priority issues, and work with the community to improve problems. “We want to make sure that the communities where we operate are healthy and well.” Although it is unrealistic to expect the complex issues over strategic land use planning to be rectified overnight, open discussions, new technologies, and addressing the subject head-on will undoubtedly benefit communities, the environment, agriculture, NSW’s mining and other industries today, and other land users long into the future. For more information on the New South Wales Minerals Council Ltd, visit Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

- By John Boley

“There is a booming market, so there are opportunities to compete intensely and also opportunities to take sensible business with long-term growth.�


he Ellton Group comprises a family of products and services for the mining and materials handling industry. The Ellton team has experienced significant growth in the last five years and is headed up by the father and son team of Mark and David Elliott. The group’s flagship company is Ellton Conveyors, which has emerged as a major player in the materials handling market. Ellton Conveyors offers innovative product and service solutions for the mining and materials handling industries. The company operates in three overlapping sectors. There is a design and advisory capacity, an equipment supply capability, and they also provide turnkey materials handling solutions. The conveyor market is competitive, but price is only one factor in gaining market share. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

To facilitate its growth, Ellton has focused on forming and maintaining long-term relationships with key clients. “We are in a booming market, so there is the opportunity to lose control of growth and the associated issues with delivery and quality. Conversely, we have targeted clients and opportunities that present sensible long-term partnerships and growth.” To this end, Ellton has focused on the right-fit opportunities and delivering exemplary service within its capabilities. Not surprisingly, this approach has also seen benefits for their clients. In such a strong market the mining operators are “struggling to find responses to their buying needs – they need to think a little strategically sometimes too. Some mining groups still maintain a traditional model of hard-number tendering but some other clients are seeing benefits, and the mine efficiencies, in having on-going long-term relationships, with a low-maintenance supplier.” Building and maintaining strong relationships with suppliers is also a key factor in the success of the business. Ellton utilises suppliers predominantly within Australia and this is unlikely to change in the short term. There are “risk management advantages of domestic versus foreign supply. We certainly have access to foreign supply in terms of low-technology equipment (e.g. steelwork)

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


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Conveyor Pulleys: custom designed pulleys for the bulk handling market. In-house design  methods include FEA as well as empirical mod  elling with manufacture carefully controlled at   Employing a team of experienced professionals, with recognized key stages to ensure the highest standards of   expertise in conveying, stockpiling, reclaiming, chutes work, bins and construction and reliability. Both live shaft load out systems , means that Ellton can deliver an integrated design and   andhandling space saving dead shaft designs are availconstruction package for your surface requirements.   able. Belt widths to 2500 mm; diameters to 1500 mm; ceramic or rubber  Partnerships with key industry specialistsallows Ellton to co-ordinate and lagging.  deliver world class solutions to stockpile, feeding, reclaim and high accuracy, batch weighed or volumetric train load out projects.

 Surface Handling Systems: employing a team

of experienced professionals, StockpileReclaimLoad out with recognised


expertise conveying, stockpiling, reclaim Designin & Modeling services ing, chutes work, bins services and load out systems,  Engineer & construct means integrated design and construction   Bin an or Stockpile storage designs  package. Partnerships with key industry spe  Reclaim tunnels and feeders  cialists co-ordinate and deliver world class  Highto Capacity / High Accuracy   solutions to stockpile, feeding, reclaim and high accuracy,  Kanawha Scales & Systemsbatch weighed  or volumetric train load out projects. Bin or stockpile storage designs; reTrain Loading    claim tunnels and feeders; Kanawha scales and systems; train loading.  



Tensioning Winches: Ellton designs and manof belt tensioning general purpose winches for the mining  and  ELLTON CONVEYORS  and  bulk handling industries. Winch range in cludes  sophisticated138electronic vector conFaunce Street Gosford, NSW 2250  trolled,  constant torque designs through to Australia simple, manually activated electric winches. Phone: +61 (02) 4324 1900 The supply can be completed with integrated control power systems to Fax: +61and (02) 4324 1500 match the hardware and your specific application. Electromechanical or hydraulic; fully automatic or manual control; vector controlled constant torque; variable speed/multi-speed; PLC controlled; power and control packages.   a complete range  ufactures 



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

 

but that comes with a corresponding amount of risk to supply and quality control. It’s our view that continuity and quality is more available in Australia. We have a key group of valued suppliers that have worked with us over the years and enjoyed our growth.” And the growth has been steady and strong - in the last five years, the company has increased its turnover tenfold.

ai_ait_27.1_en aik

“The way we have done that is a mix of focusing on those relationships

and telling clients what we can do rather than what we have done.” David and Mark are quick to point out that the company has continued to compete for work successfully on price as well as established relationships, and this is set to drive the next phase of growth for the company. “We are putting resources in place for our business to double over the next two years.” They add that people are what makes the difference and it is Ellton’s policy to attract and retain the best staff, treat them well

Key to More Economy in Mining For decades, Voith Turbo has been a reliable and innovative partner for the worldwide mining industry. Voith hydrodynamic start-up components in drive systems offer multiple benefits wherever heavy masses have to be accelerated smoothly, whenever maximum reliability is required and however tough the

conditions are – be it above or underground. Voith turbo couplings are a key component for the reliable and economical operation of belt conveyors, armoured-face conveyors, bucket wheel excavators or crushers.

Voith Turbo Pty Ltd, ABN 48 008 763 808 Sydney

503 Victoria St, Wetherill Park NSW 2164 Tel. +612 9609 9400, Fax. +612 9756 4677


Tel. + 617 3276 8105, Fax. + 617 3276 8357


Tel. + 618 9303 0000, Fax. + 6189303 4120

Melbourne Tel. + 613 9431 2866, Fax. + 613 9431 2866 Auckland

Tel. + 649 358 9078, Fax. + 649 358 9070

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



   Tru-Track Belt Tensioners: the world’s only  self-tracking  truly idler. The unique and pat  ented design means that belt security is as   sured. The design eliminates side guide rollers   avoids edge  and loading of the belt. Tru-Trac     covers a full range of solutions for tracking   the  both return and load carry side, from slow     moving belts and reversible conveyors, through to high speed high load  belts for both the food, packaging and mining industries. 


  Pipe  Rail Take Up (PRT): a revolutionary, new  generation  in take up design that sets bench-

 

  marks in strength, versatility and    

simplicity. It eliminates the problems of pulley carriage    and rail distortion suffered by out  alignment    dated designs. The standardised rail and foot  assemblies can be unbolted for transport. End    base modules are interchangeable meaning the winch can be mounted at    either end without modified parts. Oversized wheels in a radial mount,   guarantee reliable, accurate motion. Pipe rail for 3D stability; diametrically  opposed wheels; oversized wheels— low drag; robust structural assembly;  accurate rail connections; suits single a multi layer loop.  

  Hinge Locked Guarding:    

in response to industry demand for equipment guarding that is   to the standards yet simple to spec compliant    install and operate, Ellton has developed  ify,   the “Hinge Locked Guarding” (HLG) system. At the heart of the design is a robust yet lightweight tubular frame guard panel secured by a spring loaded, lockable clamp. The clamp performs three functions: hinge mount, spring retention clamp and AS1755 compliant guard lock. Once unlocked, the clamp can be pulled clear and rotated by hand for opening. 


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


and accept there is more to life than conveyors. David and Mark spoke proudly about various projects that had been successfully completed over the last five years. “Design and advice on materials handling systems; a major twoyear turnkey construction contract involving primary crushing, stockpiling, reclaiming and load-out, another major contract that will last for the next 12 months or so supplying service stockpile, mains underground trunk and gate conveyor systems,” these are some of the notable jobs that have underpinned half a decade of strong growth for the group. The opportunity to service their conveyor products has led to the establishment of Ellton Mine Services, a specialist conveyor installation and maintenance contractor to the mining industry. “Ellton Mine Services was born out of a need to provide the best after-sales and installation sup-

port to Ellton Conveyors and our clients”. The Ellton Group now boasts a service and installation arm that has gained a reputation for on-time, quality installations, and client support.” Ellton Group believes this combination is something the industry has been crying out for, and something that is gaining a lot of attention. Mark and David sum up the essence of what Ellton offers as the ability to “come up with solutions based on the needs of our clients. The feedback we get is that they like our preparedness to tailor designs to what they need rather than offer what we happen to have in the drawer and our readiness to respond to their needs quickly and efficiently. We try to be a low-maintenance supplier, a lowimpact partner. The main thing we sell our clients is time” – time saved by supplying reliable equipment and first class support. “Flexibility and commitment – the two must go together.”

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus


n the demanding field of drill and blast work, high performance is crucial. Whether the project involves such diverse areas as mining, road work, tunneling, dams, and structural demolition, Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd has the experience, tools, and professionalism to get the job done right. “We offer a quality service and are committed to conducting our operations in a highly professional manner,” says Robert Grayson, General Manager - Drill and Blast. “Our owners manage our business, are in contact with our employees and our clients on a day to day basis, and we are committed to continuously improving the quality of our products and services and growing our business in a sustainable manner.”

- By Robert Hoshowsky

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


Founded by Phil Blake and Jon Kitchen in 2000, Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd remains a privatelyowned company that prides itself on being approachable to all their clients in mining and civil construction operations. “We are flexible and amenable to methods of operations or specialised arrangements that mutually reward us and our clients,� says Mr Grayson. Prior to starting Total Drilling Services, both Messrs Blake and Kitchen worked for many years in the drill-blast industry and with the key members of their man-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

agement team, they bring extensive combined international experience in the drilling and specialist blasting fields on mining (open cut, quarry and underground) and civil operations (road, rail, tunneling, dams, pipelines, structural demolition and urban environments).

Qualified Staff Based in Western Australia, Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd works alongside its customers on all aspects of drill and blast work – from

initial blast design to initiation sequencing – to produce the best results each and every time. Every project is professionally planned, with the utmost reliability, respect for the environment, and strict adherence to health and safety. At Total Drilling Services, there is a strong commitment to ongoing training and development of all personnel. “Most drill operators employed by TDS already have experience in the operation of the equipment we require them to op-

erate,” says Jon Kitchen. “We have an in-house competency assessment program which all employees are required to complete, and there has been progress towards a nationally accredited operator competency certificate for blast hole drilling which we will be incorporating into our training plans.” In addition to experienced drill operators, Total Drilling Services has competency frameworks in place for exploration drilling operations which will be incorporated into their Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


training. Shotfirers and explosive operators are bound by training and competency assessments, required to complete the TDS competency assessment program, and take regular refresher training courses. At present, TDS has about 50 staff, which fluctuates up to 85 depending on demand. While much of the company’s work to date has been conducted in Western Australia, the company continues to tender on work in other states, and has been in discussions with potential clients in


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

Africa and Indonesia. Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd has enjoyed considerable success, and plans to see an expansion on the order of 25 per cent or greater this year, along with an increase in machinery, trucks, and other equipment. “About every quarter, we go through and we select resource companies and people we believe can be potential clients, and we’ll send out a letter of the services we offer,” says Mr Grayson. Much of Total Drilling Services’s business comes from

satisfied repeat clients, and others primarily in mining, resources, or earthmoving contractors seeking the services of drill and blast professionals.

Maintaining Quality Control Instead of taking on an excessive number of jobs, TDS will typically limit the number of projects it is working on at any one time to maintain its high quality and safety standards in areas including blasthole drilling, RC exploration and

grade control drilling, aircore drilling, professional blasting services, and explosives supply. Although the company recently separated its Exploration Drilling and Drill and Blast Operations, it continues to operate as one team to bring its clients quality, professional services conducted with the utmost regard to safety and the environment. The firm’s blasting team is comprised of skilled individuals able to provide customised, total blast crew and explosive supply so-

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

lutions to meet the needs of customers. Along with a fleet of explosives manufacturing vehicles and professional personnel, TDS is able to provide blasting for quarries and surface mining operations, pre-split and final wall blasting, controlled blasting in urban environments, explosive demolition of concrete and steel structures, computer-assisted drill and blast design services, detailed blast monitoring and reporting services, and a great deal more. On the drilling side, TDS takes pride

in providing professional, effective, safe and flexible services to the mining and civil construction industries in Australia and internationally. “We perform top hammer percussive drilling to depths of 24 metres in diameters ranging from 76mm – 152mm, Down the Hole hammer blasthole drilling at hole diameters of 140208mm, reverse circulation drilling to depths of 120 metres (plans to purchase a machine later this year with depth capability exceeding 200 metres), and aircore drilling to depths of 54 metres at present,�

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


“We offer a quality service and are committed to conducting our operations in a highly professional manner.” Robert Grayson, General Manager Drill and Blast

says Mr Grayson. “All forms of blasting for open cut mining, quarrying and civil construction projects are undertaken.” Using its fleet of hydraulic crawler drills and professional personnel, TDS is able to provide its clients with a wide range of services, including production drilling for quarries and surface mining operations, probe drilling, geotechnical drilling, pre-split drilling and contour drilling, computer-assisted drill and blast design services, drill and blast


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

operation auditing services, and more. With a blast hole drill fleet including Sandvik and Atlas Copco Machines TDS is capable of drilling diameters in the range of 45mm – 208mm at depths of up to 54 metres. For Australia’s drill and blast industry, one of the biggest hurdles is not centred on difficult terrain or tough working conditions, but finding the right people and machinery for the job. “The biggest challenge today is finding high quality skilled employ-

      

      

   

         

    

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


ees,” says Mr Grayson. “Keeping abreast of the remuneration and incentives required to attract and retain these employees as well as adequately recovering these expenses from your clients is paramount to success.” Finding available machinery can also be challenging, espe-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

cially when considering the ridiculously lengthy Australian quarantine delays when importing equipment from other countries. Over the years, Mr Grayson worked in a number of building and resource sectors and eventually obtained his Shotfirers ticket, Quarry Managers Ticket,

Australia to join TDS in 2006 and becoming a Director in 2010. The company, says Mr Grayson, prides itself on providing quality work done on time, at a realistic price. Today, TDS remains a proud, 100 per cent Australian-owned operation. With a significant fleet of equipment and skilled personnel including 14 blast hole drills, three RC drills plus support equipment, machinery and vehicles – Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd also plans to launch a new website this year, with features that allow employees to access the company’s safety management system documentation, and improve document control. and gained plenty of hands-on experience operating heavy mine site machinery. Later, he worked as a Project Manager, Technical Services Manager, Drill & Blast Consultant, Drill and Blast Superintendent, and Quarry Superintendent in a number of countries before returning to

“We are prepared to work anywhere and we are flexible,” says Mr Grayson. “Total Drilling Services Pty Ltd is not a low cost budget operator, but a high-quality value for money, drilling and blasting contractor and an alternative to the larger organisations.” Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

-By Jaime McKee


ocated in the Hunter Valley at Rutherford NSW, PWG King and Sons is a progressive engineering company that has been providing a wide spectrum of engineering services to the Mining, Transport, Electrical, Aluminium, Agricultural, Construction, Rail, Manufacturing, and Food Processing industries since 1923. Colloquially known as Kings, the firm was founded by Percy William George King, and remains a family-owned business to this day. With a reputation for providing customers with honest and top-quality service in such a board range of sectors, Kings has seen great success

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


over the 80-odd years it has been in operation, and has been wellpositioned to weather the recent financial storm and retain both its staff and its loyal customer base. The firm currently employs approximately 90 staff and apprentices, with a commitment to providing training and building a diversified skill set. Having recently expanded its operations into the Western Districts with a site at Wallerawang, Kings is even seeking new skilled tradespeople at present - in these uncertain times a sure sign of an enduring company. Kings describes its success as owing to its strong history of business ethics. Established early in the company’s long life, these practices include a commitment to man-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

agement, a strong customer service ethic, highly trained and motivated staff, and a willingness to change with the times, introducing leading-edge technology into its work where appropriate. Comprehensive Quality Assurance systems also

play a role in Kings’ commitment to ethical practice, and as such the firm operates a highly accredited facility, registered to AS/NZS ISO 9001 and featuring top Occupational Health and Safety policies.

Services PWG King and Sons provides diversified offerings that range from repair and design services, to production of unique products, to general engineering services. Under its Services line, customers can access a large range of Service Exchange Components, allowing them to avoid downtime, lost production, and the need to carry spare parts. Kings also provides overhauls to underground mining equipment, including Shuttle Car re-builds and complete overhauling and repair of Continuous

Miners, Breaker Feeders, and Conveyor Belt Drive Heads. Kings also manufactures and repairs all types of hydraulic cylinders for use in coal mining, industrial, or agricultural equipment, and can design and create custom hydraulic cylinders to suit clients’ needs. Kings also employs Service Engineers, qualified with all relevant Department of Mineral Resources and mine site-specific inductions. As fully Accredited Trainers, these engineers are available for mine

Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


site training and to commission overhauled equipment, as well as troubleshooting and auditing of mining machinery. Kings also offers an in-house CAD department equipped with the latest software tools, and as such is capable of producing manufacturing drawings and fully rendered 3D models. This capability enables Kings to develop its own mechanical parts, components, fabrications, assemblies, exploded views, animations, upgrades to existing designs, prototypes, detailed workshop drawings and bills of ma-


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

terials, as well as allowing the department to build and test its products in advance of manufacturing. Keeping such a high-level design process in-house saves time and money, and the efficiency it provides is then passed on to the customer.

Products Having repaired, serviced, supported, and engineered product solutions since the introduction of the cable-powered Shuttle Car in the mid 1900s, Kings was well situated to design and develop its own cus-

fore/aft adjustment. Optional East West configuration is available.



• Operator Compartment/Access

Inside the drivers compartment all controls have been located to give greater driver access. Some controls have been duplicated to allow ease of use from either seating position.

• Seating • Controls • Headlights

Headlights 2 quartz halogen headlights have been fitted to both the front and rear of the Koal Hauler for increased driver visibility.

tom machinery. The firm describes the design of its Kings Koal Hauler (KKH) as bringing “the traditional Shuttle Car into the Twenty First Century through innovative technology”. Identifying the need to redesign the Shuttle Car for the modern age, the KKH design focused on operator ergonomics, comfort, ease of operation, and safety; machine reliability; and reduction of costs per ton. Key features include a strengthened body with additional ribs, gussets and doubler plates; a wide body hopper, wide conveyor re-

turn guides, variable speed traction control, a cooler operating hydraulic system, and compact oil-cooled brake units. Recently, Kings also developed the Shuttle Car Tyre Removal Device. Designed to reduce the involvement of personnel in changing wheels in the underground mine environment, the device was designed with health and safety in mind. Where maintenance staff were previously required to lift the tyre and rim assembly (weighing up to 450kg), the Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011


device instead carries out this operation using a powered hydraulic arm, making the operation vastly safer for personnel. Also in Kings’ product repertoire is provision of after-market spare parts, with 24-hour supply of same, and the provision of a wide range of key support equipment such as piston cups, o-rings, bonded seals and service kits. Kings is also the sole distribution agent in the country for a number of Constant Velocity Joints, used extensively in Shuttle Car manufacture and re-build.


MARCH 2011 | Australian Resource Focus

General Engineering Rounding out Kings’ comprehensive line are its in-house General Engineering services. Kings has a full Boiler Making/Fabrication facility for all light to medium fabrication manufacture and repairs, and is able to rebuild worn component welds, roll and weld steel plate and flat bar, rebuild fabrication repairs, and provide bronze welding, aluminium welding, and general fabrication services. Kings also has a fully equipped machine shop, enabling the firm to provide general and specialised machining. With

CNC lathes, horizontal borers, universal milling machines, radial arm drills, slotters, and vertical machining centres, Kings is able to carry out a large range of machining tasks. Its CNC (Computerised Numerically Controlled) machines include lathes 3m in length with turning capacity up to 600mm diameter; vertical machining centres with table movements of 1260mm x 650mm; a 5-axis bed milling machine with a capacity of 3500 x 1200 x 1500 x 7 tonnes; and a 5-axis horizontal boring machine with infinitely indexable table, bed travel of 2000mm

x 1500mm, quill travel of 500mm, column travel of 1500mm, and 40 tool ATC. The diverse range of expertise Kings brings to all its work has made the company a leader in its field. Well-equipped to tackle such a vast variety of tasks, Kings infuses everything it does with the highest degree of quality, ethics, and service. With over 80 years of experience under its belt, it is no large stretch to suggest that PWG King and Sons will be in business for a long while yet to come. Australian Resource Focus | MARCH 2011



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