A project that would process 1.5 million tonnes of ore into battery materials each year at Townsville has been given “prescribed project” status by the Queensland government.
The Townsville Energy Chemicals Hub (TECH) proposed by Queensland Pacific Metals (QPM) would be 40 kilometres south of the city, at the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct, and convert ore from New Caledonia into nickel sulfate, cobalt sulfate and high-purity alumina.
Both ore coming in and chemicals exported would move through the Port of Townsville.
The company’s CEO Stephen Grocott said construction “could begin” next year, with production starting up in late-2023 and creating materials for electric vehicle batteries.
“Furthermore, we will do this in a sustainable manner with industry leading low carbon emissions, zero process liquid discharge and no tailings dam,” Grocott said in a statement.
“This is a global first, consistent with the TCC’s aims for the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct.”
QPM has offtake agreements in place to sell to world leader LG Energy Solutions and POSCO, both South Korean-based.
According to the Queensland government, 800 jobs would be created during construction, with 300 operational jobs and 1,400 in supporting industries.
“Now that the prescribed project declaration has been made, the Queensland Coordinator-General can work with project proponent… to ensure all necessary project approvals are obtained in a timely manner,” said state development minister Steven Miles.
Picture: Nickel Sulfate (Sumitomo)
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