Delegation Visits Simberi Mine

By: PNG Business News September 06, 2021

Photo Credit: St Barbara

A delegation from the Environment Department, led by environment minister Wera Mori and managing director of the Conservation and Environment Protection Authority Gunther Joku, recently visited St Barbara's Simberi facilities to discuss plans to transition to sulfide mining.

The purpose of the tour was to observe firsthand the programs and projects that St Barbara is doing on the island to safeguard the island's marine and terrestrial environments.

St Barbara's attempts to alleviate the effects of mining, including the waste disposal technology utilized in this project and future waste disposal plans for sulfide mining, were also on display.

Following a mine mishap in May and a brief halt of operations, Simberi restarted mining last month.

Mori urged St Barbara to guarantee that Simberi, as a member of PNG's mining industry, continues to contribute significantly to the country's economy.

“It is the industry (mining) that’s responsible for keeping the country going.

“This is not because you generate revenue for your company, shareholders, and employees, but also the country derives revenue from this project and it is in our (government’s) interest to see that you get back into production,” said Minister Mori.

Minister Mori, a geologist with almost 30 years in the profession, was also equipped with a geo pick and conducted some rock samples in Simberi's pits.

The cocoa farm and nursery were also exhibited to Mori and his colleagues.

“You’re way ahead with your end of mine life programs here in Simberi.

“The mine will come and go, but the landowners must be able to support themselves beyond mine life and this project is a good way to sustain their livelihoods,” said Mori.

He also paid a visit to the Maragon sub-health centre, which is operated by the government and funded by St Barbara, as well as the Simberi Primary School.

Kevin Woodward, Simberi's interim General Manager, thanked the minister for his visit to the project.


Reference: Post-Courier (31 August 2021). “Environment Minister Visits Simberi”.

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