By Mining Reporter – Monday 9 September 2019
HARARE (Mining Index) – As ZIMBABWE continue to experience power cuts of up to 18 hours, African lithium developer, Prospect Resources Ltd (ASX: PSC) last month signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the supply of power to Arcadia Lithium Project with African Continental Minerals’ (ACM) Coalbed Methane Gas to Power Project.
The MOU has an agreed term of five years from the commencement date, a minimum supply of 20 megawatts daily of power to meet Arcadia’s power supply requirements and an option for an additional 25 Megawatts of supply in the event of further expansion of the facility or downstream processing for Lithium Carbonate or Hydroxide plant.
Arcadia’s peak power requirement is 16 Megawatts.
In addition to the signing of the MOU, Prospect continues to consider alternative secondary power supply options including purchase of power from the South African Power Pool, a power purchase agreement with the existing Cahora Bassa hydroelectric scheme or even the creation of a solar farm on site to ensure that it has the appropriate power solution with contingencies to support the development and operations of the Arcadia Mine.
Prospect’s Managing Director, Sam Hosack, said “The development of Arcadia creates opportunities for other investment and projects to either directly or indirectly benefit from the Project’s operations.”
“Prospect is creating an ecosystem anchored by the Arcadia Mine. This positive multiplier effect will boost investment in Zimbabwe and deliver a raft of benefits to the economy and the community.”
In July this year, Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Batirai Manhando admitted his organisation has not been spared by power cuts, adding that while BNC requires 10MW of electricity per day, and his organisation has been receiving half of its power requirements from the power utility, leaving the nickel producer with no option but to import electricity direct from Cabora Bassa in Mozambique.
Arcadia’s primary source of power supply is from the national electricity grid owned and operated by Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC), whose main power distribution lines runs adjacent to Arcadia, some 15 kilometres away. Prospect has secured Arcadia’s required supply at this interconnection.
In line with Prospect’s focus to develop the Arcadia Lithium Project, the Agreement provides Prospect with power supply optionality for the project whilst also generating opportunities for additional services or projects, such as ACM’s Coalbed Methane Gas to Power Project, to be developed.
African Continental Minerals currently holds two Special Grants containing a total 245,000 hectares and is awaiting the final approvals on a third asset. All assets are covered by existing power lines ranging from 11kV to 33kV. Drilling test and production wells will be placed within four to eight kilometres from power distribution lines.
The MoU is non-binding and sets out the key terms for a subsequent formal offtake agreement as the Arcadia Lithium Project is developed.
ACM possesses vital technical industry experience to deliver a purpose-built power solution for Prospect.
ACM’s parent entity, Jacqueline Resources, has established a team of experienced experts on the ground in Zimbabwe headed by Troy Wilson, a widely recognized Coalbed Methane (CBM) expert, with over 20 years’ experience across exploration through to production.
Jacqueline Resources’ team possess global experience across de-gassings to energy projects in coal mining such as converting CBM gas to power, as well as Coal Seam Gas (CSG projects. ENDS//