Posted by Paul Moore on twelfth January 2021
FPX Nickel Corp has highlighted the potential for its Baptiste mission in central British Columbia to provide refined nickel with a considerably decrease carbon footprint than different sources of manufacturing within the world nickel business. These findings are primarily based on the mission’s current Preliminary Financial Evaluation (PEA), which outlined the event of a traditional processing facility powered by low-carbon hydro-electric energy for the manufacturing of a refined, high-grade (63% nickel) product able to bypassing smelting and being bought straight to finish customers.
The carbon depth of Baptiste operations is predicted to common 2.40 t of carbon dioxide per tonne of refined nickel manufacturing (t CO2/t refined Ni). Baptiste carbon depth compares very favourably to revealed literature estimating the carbon depth of present nickel manufacturing from varied mineral deposit varieties:
- 7.19 t CO2/t refined Ni for Class 1 nickel manufacturing from sulphide ore
- 27.50 t CO2/t refined Ni for Class 1 nickel manufacturing from laterite ore
- 45.00 t CO2/t refined Ni for ferronickel manufacturing from laterite ore
- 69.00 t CO2/t refined Ni for nickel pig iron manufacturing from laterite ore
“These outcomes, taken together with the current PEA, place Baptiste as a really disruptive mission within the world nickel business, with the potential to turn into a major nickel producer at each low-cost and low-carbon depth for the electrical automobile battery and stainless-steel markets,” commented Martin Turenne, FPX’s President and CEO.
“Importantly, these estimates of Baptiste’s carbon footprint don’t account for the potential sequestration of CO2 within the mission’s tailings, which our ongoing analysis collaboration with the College of British Columbia suggests might act as a sizeable carbon storage facility and additional decrease the mission’s web carbon emissions beneath 2.40 t CO2/t refined Ni. Given the regulatory push by governments in Europe and elsewhere to impose most carbon footprint thresholds for electrical automobile batteries, we see the beneficial positioning of Baptiste on the worldwide nickel ‘carbon curve’ as a key differentiator for the mission going ahead.”
Primarily based on the diesel and electrical energy consumption for mining and processing actions outlined within the PEA, the carbon depth of Baptiste operations is predicted to common 2.40 t of CO2 per tonne of refined nickel manufacturing over the mission’s 35-year mine life.
The low carbon depth of Baptiste nickel manufacturing is a perform of a number of options particular to the mission, together with:
- Low stripping ratio: Baptiste has a life-of-mine stripping ratio of 0.40:1, and thus requires decrease consumption of diesel for the mining fleet in comparison with different similar-scale operations with larger overburden and waste content material and better stripping ratios
- Hydroelectric energy: The mission’s processing facility will probably be powered by low-carbon hydro-electric energy, whereas a major proportion of worldwide nickel operations (eg ferronickel and nickel pig iron) are powered by carbon-intensive coal-fired vegetation
- Refined nickel product with no smelting: Given their excessive steel content material (63% nickel and 30% iron) and low stage of deleterious parts, Baptiste’s ferronickel briquettes are anticipated to bypass the normal nickel smelting course of and be bought as a refined nickel product on to stainless-steel producers, thereby avoiding the carbon emissions related to the smelting and refining of typical nickel sulphide concentrates
The Baptiste PEA demonstrates the potential for establishing a greenfield open-pit mine and an on-site magnetic separation and flotation processing plant, utilizing standard know-how and gear. At a throughput charge of 120,000 tonnes per day (or 43.8 Mt/y), annual manufacturing is projected to common 44,932 t nickel contained in ferronickel briquettes grading 63% nickel at C1 working prices of US$2.74 per pound ($6,038 per tonne) of nickel.
The corporate’s Decar Nickel District claims cowl 245 sq. kilometres of the Mount Sidney Williams ultramafic/ophiolite complicated, 90 km northwest of Fort St James in central British Columbia. The District is a two-hour drive from Fort St James on a high-speed logging highway.
Decar hosts a greenfield discovery of nickel mineralisation within the type of a naturally occurring nickel-iron alloy referred to as awaruite, which is amenable to bulk-tonnage, open-pit mining. Awaruite mineralisation has been recognized in 4 goal areas inside this ophiolite complicated, being the Baptiste deposit, the B goal, the Sid goal and Van goal, as confirmed by drilling within the first three plus petrographic examination, electron probe analyses and outcrop sampling on all 4. Since 2010, roughly US$24 million has been spent on the exploration and improvement of Decar.
As reported within the present NI 43-101 useful resource estimate, having an efficient date of September 9, 2020, the Baptiste deposit incorporates 1.996 billion tonnes of indicated assets at a median grade of 0.122% DTR nickel, containing to 2.4 Mt of nickel, plus 593 Mt of inferred assets with a median grade of 0.114% DTR nickel, containing 0.7 Mt of nickel, each reported at a cut-off grade of 0.06% DTR nickel.