Cornish Metals – Opening of Water Treatment Plant at South Crofty

In October, Cornish Metals officially opened the Water Treatment Plant at the South Crofty Tin Project, marking the commencement of dewatering the mine. This is an important milestone for the continued advancement of the Project towards an investment decision.

The opening event was attended by local politicians, members of the community, contractors, service providers and media representatives. Planning for the inevitability of the Cornish weather, marquees had been set up accordingly!

The day began with speeches by Cornish Metals Chairman, Patrick Anderson, CEO, Richard Williams, and COO, Owen Mihalop. A speech was also given by Sir Mick Davis, CEO of Vision Blue Resources, which invested £25 million in Cornish Metals in 2022.

Attendees then took a short walk over to the Water Treatment Plant, which cost £7 million to build, where everyone gathered to watch Sir Mick press a button which officially began the dewatering process. This was followed by a walk around the edge of the plant, where guests could get a good look at the pumps and see the clean, treated water at the end.

The event had a celebratory atmosphere, and there was a real sense that Cornish Metals is on track to begin production in late 2026.

BlytheRay devised a comprehensive media strategy for the event, in order to maximise awareness of the WTP opening and what this means for Cornish Metals and Cornwall. In advance of the event, BlytheRay spoke with various journalists across TV, radio, national press, local press, investment press and trade press. There was a lot of media interest in the event, which was attended by several media outlets, and covered by The Times, BBC, ITV, Daily Mail, BBC Radio Cornwall, Pirate FM, Business Live, Western Morning News, Mining.Com, The Northern Miner, and more.

Information on Dewatering the South Crofty Mine

It is estimated that there is approximately 8,000,000m3 of water (3,000 Olympic swimming pools worth) that needs to be discharged from the mine. Currently, South Crofty receives an average inflow of approximately 6,500 cubic metres per day:

  • Since the mine closed in 1998 (25 years ago), water has seeped into the mine from faults in the surrounding rocks and from rain draining down shafts
  • The Company will pump and treat 25,000 cubic metres of water a day
  • Cornish Metals is taking the water from the South Crofty mine, treating it in line with the Company’s permitted environmental standards, removing substances such as iron, manganese and arsenic, before discharging it into the Red River.
  • This process is being carried out in order to help improve the river’s water quality. Currently, an estimated 15,000 cubic metres of untreated water naturally drains into the Red River from old mines in the area
  • The process of dewatering the mine is expected to take up to 18 months, and will cost about £10 million in electricity to power the process
  • All of the current Mineral Resources lie between 400m – 850m depth within the mine, so the Company has to dewater to allow access to those areas

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