Escondida goes big, moves to renew entire fleet

BHP, owner of the Escondida copper operation in the Antofagasta region of northern Chile, is collaborating with Caterpillar and Finning International to replace Escondida’s entire haul truck fleet. Under the agreement, which the group jointly confirmed is part of a strategic equipment renewal process developed by Escondida, the mine will take delivery of new Caterpillar 798 AC electric-drive trucks with…

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Codelco names Sougarret CEO

Chilean copper producer Codelco has named a new CEO: Andre Sougarret. According to a Reuters report citing a company statement, he replaces Octavio Areneda, who is stepping down for personal reasons effective 29 August. Sougarret was most recently vice president for the company’s northern operations. He is currently on medical leave, Reuters noted, so his appointment will be effective once…

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Las Pelambres prepping for desalination plant start

Chilean miner Antofagasta has confirmed it will start operations at its new desalination plant – part of its $2.2 billion expansion of the Los Pelambres complex – this year, as facility construction is 86% complete and marine works are 87% done. The plant at the port of Punta Chungo, Los Vilos, was designed for water management amid an extensive drought…

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Chile minister: copper mining royalties to rise

The finance minister for Chile, Mario Marcel, has reportedly outlined a tax reform plan that will not only raise taxes across the country, but will also increase mining royalties for copper companies producing over 50,000 tonnes annually. The plan, according to a Reuters report, would impact some of the industry’s largest producers including BHP, Antofagasta, Codelco and others. It has…

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Pipeline leak reported at Antofagasta’s Los Pelambres

Antofagasta said on 7 June that its operations have been disrupted at the Los Pelambres project in Chile’s Coquimbo region after a leak was detected in the underground pipeline that carries its concentrate. The miner said the leak was detected on 31 May in the line between its concentrator plant and the Los Vilos port and was immediately shut down;…

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Copper Mark adds new sites, touts 10% milestone

The Copper Mark initiative, with the addition of its three newest award sites, has confirmed that more than 10% of the world’s copper is now being produced by its member operations. The new additions to the group bring the total number of participating sites to 12. KGHM Polska Miedź S.A. Oddzial Huta Miedzi’s Glogów and Legnica mines, both in Poland, mark…

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