Mining & Resources


Joyce accused of 'crocodile tears' over Shenhua project

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce at the National Press Club earlier this month.

Peter Hannam 6:35 PM   Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce has been accused of crying "crocodile tears" over the approval of the giant Shenhua coal project planned for the Liverpool Plains, after department officials revealed he failed to seek detailed information or make any formal comments opposing the open-cut mine.

BHP to shift treasury staff to London

The shift will resolve the recent reduction of BHP staff in London, where some of the miner's biggest shareholders, including BlackRock are based.

Peter Ker 6:33 PM   BHP Billiton will shift its Treasury functions to London, despite the Australian Government's approval of its 2001 merger with Billiton requiring most of executive's 'key support functions' to be based in Australia.

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Battling coal miners face China import threat

While the coal sector isn't in terminal decline there are some tough times ahead, according to analysts.

Angela Macdonald-Smith 5:39 PM   Australia's struggling coal miners need to brace for several more years of low prices before the current glut in supply is absorbed, with the risk things get worse before they get better as China may impose even tougher import restrictions, according to consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

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Why iron ore's slump is hitting BHP hardest

BHP Billiton lost almost 7 per cent off its share price last week.

Rose Powell 11:07 AM   Diversified exposure could mean BHP Billiton will be one of the earlier stocks to pick up when commodity prices recover, analyst says.

Whitehaven Coal CEO urges stiffer penalties for illegal protesters

Whitehaven Coal feels let down by the judiciary.

Angela Macdonald-Smith 6:21 AM   Whitehaven Coal chief executive Paul Flynn has criticised the judiciary for letting illegal protesters off with 'no more than a whipping with a feather'.

Safety concerns stack up at Rinehart's Roy Hill

Gina Rinehart (centre) at the $10 billion Roy Hill mine pictured with Barry Fitzgerald (left), chief executive officer of the mine, and Sanjiv Manchanda, project manager.

Tess Ingram   Gina Rinehart's $US10 billion Roy Hill project has received its 10th prohibition notice from the West Australian Department of Mines and Petroleum in just over a year after another safety incident involving a crane.

Australian acquisition next on the agenda for Indian gold baron

Rajesh Mehta is the new owner of the Valcambi gold refinery in Switzerland and is eyeing Australian acquisitions.

Peter Ker   The Indian gold baron who paid $274 million for one of the world's largest gold refineries on Monday insists that an Australian acquisition is next on his agenda.

Billions lined up for renewable energy in NSW

Wind power is increasing its footprint.

Peter Hannam   Renewable-energy backers are prepared to pour as much as $13 billion in new projects in NSW – provided the investment climate is right.

Atlas Iron shares dive after return to trading

Atlas shares resumed trading 8.6¢ lower at 3.4¢ just after 10am on Monday.

Peter Ker   Atlas Iron shares have resumed trading after a 16 week suspension, and short sellers could have an influence on the stock in early trading.

Labor attacks Tony Abbott over $60b renewable energy bill claim

Bill Shorten

Nicole Hasham   Labor has described Prime Minister Tony Abbott as "the most unscientific" leader in Australia's recent history after he claimed the party's ambitious renewable energy goal would cost consumers $60 billion.

Fortescue backs BHP plan to stop iron ore being 'held to ransom'

Mining companies are diversifying their tugboat options to avoid a repeat of 2014's workplace dispute at Port Hedland.

Peter Ker   Fortescue Metals' Nev Power has praised a plan by the miner's bitter rival BHP Billiton to introduce a second tugboat player in Port Hedland.

Hillary Clinton sets renewable energy goals, wants more wind, solar power

Pay attention to the need for alternative energy sources, says Hillary Clinton.

Alana Wise   Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has called on Sunday for a dramatic national shift to energy sources such as solar and wind, setting a new goal.

Northern Star focuses on exploration 'chapter'

"I was pretty vocal when we were doing acquisitions that it was cheaper to buy assets than it was to drill, which is pretty unique," Bill Beament, MD, Northern Star Resources, says.

Tess Ingram   Northern Star Resources' aggressive exploration spend has set it up well to focus on organic growth in its "next chapter".

Rinehart's Hancock tips $US80-a-tonne iron ore

Gina Rinehart's Roy Hill iron ore mine is scheduled to begin production in October.

Perry Williams   Gina Rinehart's most trusted lieutenant is tipping an iron ore price recovery even as Hancock Prospecting flagged its Roy Hill project will start shipping later than scheduled.

Newmont firm on Tanami despite sliding gold prices

Mining major Newmont believes its Tanami expansion is viable despite the recent slump in gold prices.

Peter Ker   Gold major Newmont says its Tanami expansion in the Northern Territory will be viable even if gold prices continue to slide.

Political posturing threatens mining industry: Yancoal CEO

Reinhold Schmidt says there is a risk of "politics triumphing over due process".

Tess Ingram   The mining industry is at risk of being damaged by political point scoring which could deter foreign investment and spark a regional recession in New South Wales, Yancoal Australia chief executive Reinhold Schmidt has warned.

Canada's $6b nuclear industry a role model for Aust

CEO Elon Musk unveils Tesla's new home batteries in the United States

Simon Evans   Nuclear power still has a potential future in Australia despite the arrival domestic battery storage which will give renewable energy such as wind and solar a competitive edge.

CuDeco's Wayne McCrae pushed out by major shareholders

CuDeco chairman Wayne McCrae has resigned.

Tess Ingram   The mining company's colourful founder has been driven from company by its three key Chinese investors.

Tinkler facing bankruptcy over luxury jet sale

GE Commercial Australasia slapped Nathan Tinkler with a bankruptcy notice on June 25.

Donna Page   High-flying former billionaire Nathan Tinkler is facing bankruptcy over $2.8 million owed from the forced sale of his luxury private jet.

Shareholders call for CuDeco chairman's resignation

Wayne McCrae ... will resign on Friday "providing the guarantees of support are in place," says CuDeco.

Tess Ingram   CuDeco's three largest shareholders are attempting to roll the copper hopeful's colourful chairman Wayne McCrae, who has tentatively agreed to resign on Friday if certain conditions are met.

Getting to 50 per cent - building Australia's renewable future

RayGen Resources' concentrated solar photovoltaic power station in Victoria.

Peter Hannam   Labor wants renewables to supply half of Australia's electricity by 2030, but is that feasible?

Falling commodities knock mining stocks


Rose Powell   Listed mining companies have had a dismal week, with falling commodity prices dragging down most of the sector.

Citigroup's top trade revealed

Citigroup says its "most-preferred trade" in the current market is to short iron ore.

Jasmine Ng   Citigroup reveals its best trade in today's beaten up commodities world.

Fortescue insists cost cuts will last

Neville Power, FMG's CEO, says the miner is  choosing not to just mindlessly produce iron ore.

Amanda Saunders   Fortescue Metals Group chief executive Nev Power has insisted the miner's rapid cost cutting program is "absolutely" sustainable in the long-term, and says it can maintain its new break-even price of $US39 a tonne this financial year.

Copper melts to six-year low, more losses ahead

The number of requests to withdraw copper from LME warehouses relative to global inventories dropped to the lowest since March 2013.

Luzi Ann Javier   It's been a bad week for copper, and things just got worse as futures tumbled to a six-year low in New York.

Gold dips below $US1100 as $US recovers on jobless claims data

Gold has been undermined this year by expectations that the US Fed is on track to lift rates for the first time in nearly a decade.

​Gold turned lower as a steeper-than-forecast drop in US jobless claims helped the greenback recover from earlier lows.

Vale's iron-ore output rises 7.4pc in June quarter

Vale's Iron-ore output rose 7.4 per cent to 85.3 million metric tons in the quarter through June 30.

Juan Pablo Spinetto   ​Vale boosted iron-ore production last quarter to the second-highest ever for the company, exceeding analyst estimates.

Finance, mining sectors told to lift game on mental health

Mental illness still carries significant stigma in many workplaces, BeyondBlue has warned.

Clancy Yeates   Australia's mining and finance giants are being urged to publish more information about the way they support the mental health of their staff, with a new report finding these industries lag overseas peers.

Water agency unhappy with coal mine pollution plan

Chris Jonkers from the Lithgow Environment Group at a swamp site he says has been extensively damaged by the Springvale mine.

Peter Hannam   Water NSW, the state agency overseeing Sydney's water supplies, wants changes to a proposed Blue Mountains coal mine extension, to limit the impact of salt on Lake Burragorang.

FMG ponders flat future as iron exports level off

Fortescue grew exports 33 per cent in the year that chairman Andrew Forrest accused BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto of flooding the market with iron ore and talking down the iron ore price.

Peter Ker   FMG grew iron ore exports 33 per cent in fiscal 2015 and expanded more quickly than BHP and Rio Tinto