Our planning application was submitted over 6 months ago, and through this ongoing series of advertorials, we have continued to communicate the key facts about our project. This article will outline some of the main points of the proposal to build an underground gold mine in west Tyrone.
We are in agreement with many commentators, and political parties in the area, that creating jobs and prosperity in the north west of Northern Ireland should be akey area of policy development, along with the improvement of infrastructure and support for local communities.
We are proud that our project will make a major investment to help address regional economic imbalance, which will also respect and protect the environment. We believe our project can be economically transformative for west Tyrone, creating 350 full-time jobs with an average annual salary of £40,000 and also stimulating businesses and suppliers in the local area by opening up new opportunities.
This in turn will create many more jobs through the supply chain and result in an uplift in the local economy. We are committed to creating more jobs, better jobs, well trained jobs and sustainable jobs. Dalradian is committed to along-term future in west Tyrone that will bring prosperity to local communities and use best in industry environmental practices.
We have outlined our plans in extensive detail in a 10,000 page planning application which was submitted to the Department for Infrastructure in November 2017. We continue to encourage people to view our plans, which are available to all members of the public. We understand that gold mining is a new industry for west Tyrone and that’s why, in this series of advertorials, we have tried to explain key aspects of our project. Among the key facts which underpin our project are:
• Our proposed gold mine, which is an area of outstanding natural beauty will be underground and not an “open-pit’’ mine, thereby minimising the visual impact on the local landscape. The vast majority of work will occur below surface and so disruption is minimised.
• We have chosen to use a drystack facility, which is a filtered tailings process for managing by-products. In short this system
means we extract almost all of the moisture from the processed ore and then stack it in a designed and engineered facility whichresembles a hill, hence the term.
• Using this technique permits ongoing restoration during the lifetime of the mine, which again reduces the visual impact on the landscape.
• We are operating in the EU, one of the most highly regulated jurisdictions in the world and since we took over the project almost a decade ago we have been pleased to engage with a range of statutory authorities and to have been subject to many inspections.
• We submit quarterly water test results to the NIEA as part of our regulated site discharge consent. We have five full time environmental professionals constantly monitoring the water quality as well as other environmental protection requirements.
• This engagement, and our commitment to meet or exceed all regulatory guidelines, will continue throughout the entire lifetime of the project and indeed will apply to the post-closure phase, which we also outline in our planning application.
These are some of the key environmental safeguards built into our project and are examples of the state-of-the-art mine we want to build by employing best in industry standards and practices. We want to continue to employ local people and will provide training and upskilling for those coming to the mining industry from a range of backgrounds.
The opportunities don’t stop at direct employees. International research shows that for every job created at a gold mine, between 2 and 7 more are created indirectly. Our proposed underground mine represents a real and meaningful economic opportunity for a part of Northern Ireland which traditionally has suffered from under investment.
We want to help create more jobs and better jobs, west of the Bann. We will continue to engage with the local community and other stakeholders to explain our project and underline how it can be a key contributor to the social and economic sustainability of west Tyrone and the entire north west.