May 17, 2020

United Nations Presses Norway to Close Coal Mines

European Mining
coal mining
United Nations
2 min
Many mines have been abandoned on Svalbard
The UN is urging Norway to shut down its coal mining operations on the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard due to concerns due to a clash of interest with th...

The UN is urging Norway to shut down its coal mining operations on the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard due to concerns due to a clash of interest with the islands' major functionality of climate change research.

Executive secretary on climate change for the UN, Christiana Figueres, said that Svalbard is a bastion of climate change research and that this and coal mining fits very poorly together.

She also cited that Norway has been one of the global leaders when it comes to sustainable energy programmes and green living.

Svalbard has hosted mining activity since the turn of the twentieth century and the economic legacy of this would be difficult to shut down according to Norway’s climate and environment minister Tine Sundtoft.

A five-year life mine at Lunckefjell was given the seal of approval in 2011, but the current government has not come to a decision on an approach going forward. Carbon capture and storage technology could be one possibility, and Norway’s politicians have refused to rule out expanding mining activity on the island.

Figueres also warned that the Scandinavian country should take into account the economic cost of extracting ever-hard to reach oil and gas stockpiles, saying that most of the cheaper finds have already been used up. 

However, the World Coal Association (WCA) has appealed to Norway to provide global leadership in meeting the challenges of economic development, energy poverty and climate change, by rejecting calls to ban coal investments.

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May 5, 2021

Barrick profit beats expectations as copper, gold prices up

Barrick Gold
2 min
Barrick Gold reports a 78% jump in Q1 profits thanks to strong performance in Zambia and Tanzania

Barrick Gold has reported a 78% jump in first-quarter profit, beating analyst expectations thanks to rising gold and copper prices, and said it was on track to meet annual forecasts.

Production in the second half is expected to be higher than the first, the gold miner said, thanks in part to the ramp-up of underground mining at the Bulyanhulu mine in Tanzania and higher expected grades at Lumwana in Zambia, reports Reuters

Barrick Gold

Barrick’s first-quarter gold production fell to 1.10 million from 1.25 million ounces due partly to lower grades at its Pueblo Viejo mine in Dominican Republic.

Adjusted profit surged 78% to $507mn in the quarter ended March 31, from $285mn a year earlier, and Barrick announced a 9 cent per share quarterly dividend.

Stronger prices helped boost Barrick’s revenue from its copper mines in Chile, Saudi Arabia and Zambia by 31% from the fourth quarter. Overall earnings per share were $0.29, ahead of analysts’ estimate of $0.27.

“We expect a positive stock reaction to the earnings beat and strong cash flow,” said Credit Suisse analysts.

Potential for South Africa merger

Barrick CEO Mark Bristow, who has championed mergers across the gold industry, said he backed the idea of South Africa-listed miners Goldfields and AngloGold Ashanti combining.

Speculation has been swirling around the two companies and Sibanye-Stillwater, whose CEO Neal Froneman floated the idea of a three-way merger.

“I’m a South African, and this country has such a great mining history and it would be great to see a real gold business come out of the many failed discussions that we’ve seen,” said Bristow.


Goldfields declined to comment. In a statement, AngloGold Ashanti said it was focused on delivering on its growth plan to unlock value from its portfolio of gold assets.

Bristow also said he had met with the Democratic Republic of Congo’s new mines minister and other officials and was continuing to work on getting $900mn belonging to its Kibali mine joint venture out of the country.

“We have a solution, it just needs to be sanctioned by the appropriate authorities which haven’t been around for a while,” he said, referring to a recent government overhaul by President Felix Tshisekedi.


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