Sirius Minerals gets permission to start building North Yorks potash mine – by Andy Richardson (Northern Echo – October 20, 2015)

THE company behind a 1,000-job fertiliser mine has been handed the crucial paperwork for building work to start next year on the landmark project.

The decision notice from the North York Moors National Park Authority, which formally grants planning permission for the £1.5bn York Potash Project mine, near Whitby, gives the go ahead for Sirius to start digging.

It now needs to secure financing to take forward its bold plans. Industry experts have estimated that the cost to get the mine up and running is about £2.3 billion.

The company said its financing strategy is advancing and the first phase is planned to be put in place during the first quarter of 2016.

Sirius wants to take the fertiliser mineral polyhalite from underneath the North York Moors National Park, using an underground tunnel to transfer it to a proposed handling site at Wilton, near Redcar, for distribution.

The receipt of the decision notice is a major milestone for Sirius and is the conclusion of more than four years of work of navigating the bold scheme through the planning process.

Sirius bosses say the mine will create 1,040 direct jobs, with a further 1,010 supported in the construction and development phase, and £1.2bn delivered in exports.

The project now has all the planning approvals it needs to commence construction and is also continuing value engineering work with a number of contractors in order to prepare for future construction.

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