Explorers on the hunt for renewable energy and technology minerals

$3.96 million has been awarded to 25 mineral exploration projects to seek out the minerals needed for advanced electronics and renewable technologies from regions right across the state.

The funding would focus on the new economy minerals the world needed for advanced electronics and renewable technologies.

Exploration is essential for Queensland to keep up with the soaring global demand for tech minerals and these grants are in place to put Queensland’s resources industry on the front foot.

Demand for the next generation of minerals is being driven by new technologies such as electric vehicles and renewable energy products, computers, smartphones and products for the medical, defence and scientific research sectors – and Queensland is the place to get them.

These explorers will receive grants of up to $200,000 each in a joint initiative between government and industry, to help drive innovative ways to make new resource discoveries in Queensland.

The explorers will be on the hunt in regions right across the state – from Georgetown and Cairns in the north, Emerald in the east, Karumba and McKinlay in the North West Minerals Province, and the Wide Bay area inland of Bundaberg – down to Cunnamulla in the south-west.

These exploration projects mean explorers will be looking for minerals including copper, cobalt, silver and gold as well as a plethora of rare earth minerals.

As the ‘green economy’ grows, so will the demand for minerals such as cobalt, nickel, indium and many others needed to manufacture renewable technology.

Steve Harper of Red River Resources said the funding would fast-track the mid-tier explorer and producer’s exploration of a historical base metals mine near Herberton.

“This site is the historic West and East Orient base metal mines which were last operational in the early 1900s,” Mr Harper said.

“This funding opens the door for us to undertake a detailed geophysical analysis to hone in on extensions to known mineralisation to gain information to target larger silver-indium rich bulk tonnage targets”

“The site holds potentially large deposits of lead, zinc, silver, and importantly indium. Our objective is to identify extensions to the known high grade vein systems deposits with a goal to discover larger bulk tonnage targets and move to production.”

The following 25 projects will soon be up and running with activities to be completed by the end of May 2021:

North Queensland:

  • $170,000 Lynd Resources contribution to undertake deep drilling to look for silver, tin and other tech metals north of Georgetown.
  • $150,000 Dover Castle Metals to look for silver, lead and zinc and potentially one of the highest grades of indium in Australia using diamond drilling techniques on land approximately 150km-west of Cairns.
  • $190,000 Red River Resources to undertake low-impact magnetic surveys using drones on land approximately 100km south west of Cairns to look for silver, lead, zinc and indium deposits.

North-west Queensland

  • 72,000 Oakland Gold funding contribution to undertake further drill exploration to find gold deposits in an underexplored area around 150km east of Karumba
  • $200,000 Red Metal to use magnetotelluric survey equipment to undertake detailed mapping of some known zinc, lead and silver deposits in and around the old Century Mine near Lawn Hill.
  • $140,000 to Sector Projects to use diamond drilling technology to look for deep and high-quality deposits of copper and zinc in an area approximately 200km north of Mount Isa.
  • $180,000 to Century Mining to contribute to its magnetotelluric survey in and around the old Century Mine near Lawn Hill to help define more zinc, lead and silver deposits to potentially fast track to production by utilising existing mine and supply chain infrastructure.
  • $180,000 to Mount Cuthbert Resources to re-analyse historical surface samples for new economy minerals in an area approximately 100km north-east of Mount Isa.
  • $325,000 in total to Teck Australia for two projects: exploring for lead, zinc and silver in Riversleigh siltstone 200km north-west of Mount Isa and to explore and potentially re-invigorate an area approximately 200km south of Mount Isa for copper and zinc.
  • $190,000 to Red Fox Resources use diamond drilling equipment to test an area known as the Gipsy Creek Copper-Gold Project in North West Queensland.
  • $200,000 to Capricorn Copper to use gravity gradiometry techniques to survey an area approximately 100km north of Mount Isa in the hunt for copper, cobalt, lead, zinc and silver.
  • $200,000 to Minotaur Operations to employ electromagnetic survey techniques to search for large base metal and gold deposits near McKinlay in the state’s north-west.
  • $200,000 to Aeon Walford Creek to explore for deep iron oxide, copper and gold (IOCG) in an area approximately 100km west of Mount Isa.
  • $200,000 to Vendetta Mining Corp to undertake deep drilling to look for zinc, silver and lead south of Cloncurry.
  • 200,000 to Mawson Queensland to undertake deep drilling targeting base metals and new economy minerals near the world-class Cannington mine.
  • $200,000 to Chinova Resources to undertake one of the nation’s largest regional electromagnetic surveys of a known and relatively underexplored tech metal area approximately 250km south-east of Mount Isa near the Osborne mine.
  • $199,000 to Anglo American to use new core scanning and geochemistry techniques to analyse core samples from the Diamantina region from mineral exploration dating back to the 2000s, approximately 150km north of Bedourie.

Central Queensland

  • $59,000 to Mt Coolon Gold Minesto undertake extensive 3DIP survey over a silver and gold prospective corridor adjacent to the Mt Coolon Gold mine inland from Mackay.
  • $120,000 Ten Sixty Four to help undertake some deep drilling to look for gold deposits in its Monteagle Drilling Project north-west of Emerald. The deposits, if proven could tap into the well- established supply chain in the Bowen Basin.
  • $175,000 Longreach No.1 to complete high resolution magnetic and radiometric surveys over a 400km2 area just west of Longreach. The junior explorer will use this data to look for porphyry and epithermal copper and gold.
  • $40,000 to North X to work with CSIRO to undertake a mineral classification study of rare earth element mineralisation in the Peaks Range Volcanics, 75km north of Emerald. The study has potential to accelerate Queensland as a major rare earth producer.

Wide Bay region

  • $86,000 Metal Bank to undertake drilling in the Wide Bay area to further explore several known targets of copper, silver, molybdenum (used to make steel alloys in engine parts), silver, lead, tellurium – (a metal used to improve the strength of lead, copper and stainless steel) and zinc.
  • $85,000 Auburn Resources to help undertake an electromagnetic survey to undertake a non-invasive search to potentially open up a parcel of land in the Wide Bay Area inland from Bundaberg seeking nickel, cobalt and copper.

South-west Queensland

  • $200,000 to Earth Ray Exploration to search an area in south west Queensland west of Cunnamulla near the Queensland and New South Wales border.

View an interactive map of round four of Queensland’s Collaborative Exploration Initiative here.

Last updated 28 July 2020

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