Atlas' Pardoo project wins EPA approval

16/06/2008 - 10:41

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West Perth-based Atlas Iron Ltd has completed another hurdle for its Pardoo iron project in the Pilbara, which is targeting first production in October.

Atlas' Pardoo project wins EPA approval

West Perth-based Atlas Iron Ltd has completed another hurdle for its Pardoo iron project in the Pilbara, which is targeting first ore exports in October.

The company announced it had won approval from the Environmental Protection Authority which deemed that any environmental impact would be confined to the project area.

Of particular concern to the EPA was that the mining area was within the De Grey River water reserve which is classified as a priority one source protection area.

"The water reserve contains the current and future domestic water supply borefields for the township of Port Hedland. The proposal has the potential to impact groundwater through dewatering and discharge of excess water," the EPA said in its bulletin released today.

However the EPA found that hydrogeological modeling indicated that due to the nature of the orebodies and associated aquifiers in the project area, any impact associated with dewatering would be confined to the immediate area.

"This is the culmination of two years of hard work, a major milestone in our development and an endorsement of our approach to environmental management," Atlas managing director David Flanagan.

"We would like to acknowledge the EPA and all the other Government and non- Government agencies for their assistance to date."

Atlas is targeting iron ore exports at an initial rate of 1 million tonnes per annum during its first 12 months of operations of the Pardoo Project. Together with additional export tonnages from its Abydos Project, the company is targeting exports of 6 million tonnes by 2010 and 12 million tonnes by 2012.

A copy of Atlas' announcement is below

Atlas Iron Limited (ASX Code: AGO) is pleased to report that the Environmental Protection Authority of Western Australia (EPA) has recommended approval of the Company's Pardoo Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) Project.

The Pardoo Project is located 75 kilometres by road from Port Hedland, in the Pilbara of Western Australia.

"This is the culmination of two years of hard work, a major milestone in our development and an endorsement of our approach to environmental management," commented Atlas Managing Director David Flanagan.

"We would like to acknowledge the EPA and all the other Government and non- Government agencies for their assistance to date," he added.

The Board of the EPA today released their "EPA Bulletin" which contains the EPA's assessment, report and recommendations of approval to the Minister for the Environment on the Pardoo DSO Project proposal.

Endorsement of the Project by the EPA verifies the strength of Atlas' commitment to the environment as it works to commence mining on site August in preparation for DSO exports from Port Hedland by October 2008.

The EPA has concluded that it is unlikely that its objectives would be compromised by approval of the Pardoo
Project with applicable conditions.

The EPA Bulletin is open now for a 2 week public appeal period, before entering the final ministerial approval
process.

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