Rio Tinto to favour development over acquisition of copper mines — exec – by Editor ( – April 17, 2024)

Rio Tinto (ASX, LON, NYSE: RIO) will prioritize developing new copper mines over acquiring new ones to achieve its goal of producing one million tonnes of the metal annually within the next five years, copper boss Bold Baatar has said.

Speaking at the CRU World Copper Conference in Chile, the executive noted that to boost production from the roughly 700,000 tonnes of copper it currently churns out, Rio is looking mainly at organic growth.

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The fatal plane crash in the Northwest Territories this week was rare – but the journey to remote mines is always perilous – by Mike Hager, Niall McGee and Wendy Stueck (Globe and Mail – January 27, 2024)

After a few months or years of working rotating shifts at the Diavik Diamond Mine, flying to the site can become routine.

Employees file into a twin-propeller plane, exchange small talk with the crew and then tend to put their earbuds in and try to catch some shut-eye before their shifts, says Sean Farmer, a pilot who until recently worked with Northwestern Air Lease Ltd. Mr. Farmer flew all over the North, including twice-monthly flights between Fort Smith, NWT, and the Diavik mine, about 300 kilometres northeast of Yellowknife.

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Multiple fatalities reported in crash of plane carrying Rio Tinto mine workers – by Mike Hager and Xiao Xu (Globe and Mail – January 24, 2024)

A plane carrying workers to a Rio Tinto diamond mine in the Northwest Territories has crashed just above the border with Alberta, killing multiple passengers.

A spokesman for the multinational company did not say how many miners have died in the Tuesday morning crash but confirmed late that evening “a number of our people” were on a flight to the Diavik mine when it came down near the town of Fort Smith, where local authorities prepared the hospital to receive multiple wounded patients.

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World’s biggest mining project to start after 27 years of setbacks and scandals – by Tom Wilson (Financial Times – January 7, 2024)

Rio Tinto hopes $20bn Guinea iron ore, rail and port plan will pave way for ‘new era’ of mining

The world’s biggest mining project, a $20bn iron ore, rail and port development in a remote corner of west Africa, is expected to start this year after a 27-year wait beset by setbacks, scandals and several false dawns.

UK-listed Rio Tinto first secured an exploration licence in the Simandou mountains in south-eastern Guinea, 550km from the coastal capital, in 1997. Since then the country of 13mn people has had two coups d’état, four heads of state and three presidential elections.

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How Rio Tinto changed Australia – by Andrew Clark (Australian Financial Review – November 19, 2023)

The group’s pioneering role in the Pilbara helped transform the nation through engagement with Asia. A new book reveals the full story for the first time.

Back in the early 50s, Clem Walton, a taxi driver and amateur prospector, set out with three of his sons, a local station hand and a Geiger Counter on a dry creek bed about 50 kilometres east of the Mt Isa copper mine.

As the party trod warily “the counter went off the scale”, indicating rich uranium reserves. The group pegged two mining leases, named the area Mary Kathleen after Walton’s recently deceased wife, and initiated talks with interested mining companies.

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Rio Tinto CEO says China still promising mineral market as EVs boom – by Sayumi Take (Nikkei Asia – November 9, 2023)

Mining giant sees ‘quite resilient’ economy, good iron and copper demand

TOKYO — China remains a key market for Rio Tinto, the Anglo-Australian mining company, even as the nation’s faltering economy and authoritarian regime concerns some Western governments and businesses, Chief Executive Jakob Stausholm told Nikkei Asia.

“There are some challenges in the property sector, but you have to bear in mind that the automotive sector is booming, particularly EV production and the export of EVs,” said Stausholm, who had just come from China to speak at Nikkei’s Global Management Dialogue in Tokyo on Wednesday.

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Rio’s latest rock shelter damage highlights need for Aboriginal Voice, advocates say – by Melanie Burton (Reuters – October 2, 2023)

MELBOURNE, Oct 3 (Reuters) – Damage caused to an Aboriginal rock shelter by mining giant Rio Tinto (RIO.AX) in August underscores the need for better heritage protection laws and a greater say for Indigenous groups promised in this month’s Voice referendum, advocates say.

Rio admitted on Sept. 21 to damaging a rock shelter on Aug. 6 in Western Australia’s Pilbara region while blasting at a nearby iron ore mine. Rio is now working with the Muntulgura Guruma people to assess what had happened, it said.

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Canada a ‘decade or two’ ahead of West in battle for climate change, says Rio Tinto CEO – by Naimul Karim (Financial Post – September 20, 2023)

Jakob Stausholm says he hopes to further invest in Canada’s critical minerals sector

Canada is a “decade or two” ahead of other western countries when it comes to addressing climate change, Rio Tinto Ltd.’s chief executive Jakob Stausholm said. The head of one of the world’s largest mining companies said he hopes to further invest in Canada’s critical minerals sector as the company tries to meet its goal of reducing its carbon emissions by 50 per cent by 2030.

“We have to admit we have a significant carbon footprint, and we need to address that,” Stausholm said. “I just think Canada is an amazing opportunity. You have got, historically, a significant amount of renewable energy. You have a very high content of green energy in your electricity. That’s interesting for us.”

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Pentagon gives mine developer $20M to find nickel in Michigan – by Garret Ellison (M – September 20, 2023)

WASHINGTON, D.C., — The federal government has awarded more than $20 million to a mine developer which is exploring for nickel deposits in Michigan and Minnesota.

On Tuesday, Sept. 12, the U.S. Department of Defense awarded a grant to Talon Metals, which is accelerating its hunt for nickel along a geologically unique region that includes parts of Minnesota and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

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Rio Tinto’s stealth moves in WA lithium grab – by Brad Thompson (Australian Financial Review – September 18, 2023)

Rio Tinto has quietly entered the lithium land grab unfolding in Western Australia as it looks to secure its future in battery minerals, racking up exploration tenements spanning more than 145,000 hectares in the red-hot jurisdiction that has minted billionaires and fanned takeover battles.

The Australian Financial Review can reveal that Rio has claims covering more than 61,000 hectares close to the Kathleen Valley lithium project being developed by $6.6 billion takeover target Liontown Resources.

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Rio Tinto-First Quantum JV to develop massive copper project in Peru – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – August 29, 2023)

Rio Tinto (ASX, LON: RIO) and First Quantum Minerals (TSX: FM) have formed a joint venture that will focus on moving to development the La Granja copper project in Peru, described by the new partners as one of the world’s largest undeveloped deposits of the metal.

After paying $105 million to Rio Tinto, First Quantum now owns a 55% stake in the project and has become its operator. The Canadian miner has committed to further invest up to $546 million into La Granja, part of which will be used to complete a feasibility study over the next two to three years.

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Rio to build Canada’s largest solar farm – by Esmarie Iannucci (Mining Weekly – August 11, 2023)

PERTH ( – Mining major Rio Tinto has announced plans to build Canada’s largest solar plant at its Diavik diamond mine.

The solar plant will feature over 6 600 solar panels that will generate approximately 4 200 MWh of carbon-free electricity annually for the mine. The solar power plant will provide up to 25% of Diavik’s electricity during closure work that will run until 2029, with commercial production from the operation expected to end in early 2026.

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Rio Tinto looking at deals to produce lithium in Canada – by James Fernyhough (Financial Post/Bloomberg – August 1, 2023)

Looking at a number of possible acquisitions

Rio Tinto Group, the world’s biggest iron ore miner, is looking at a number of possible lithium acquisitions and would like to buy an asset to produce the key battery material in Canada, according to chief executive Jakob Stausholm. The London-based company was “looking at a number of opportunities” in lithium, Stausholm told media in Melbourne on Tuesday.

“I wouldn’t mind having lithium production in Canada,” he said, but added lithium was “a pretty hot market” and he was “reluctant to come out with too big of a check.” Rio already produces aluminum, iron ore and diamonds in the nation.

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Rio Tinto flags cost hike at Argentina lithium project – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – July 19, 2023)

Rio Tinto (ASX, LON: RIO) has flagged a likely cost estimate and schedule review for its Rincon lithium project in Argentina’s Salta Province, an emerging hub for greenfield projects.

The world’s second largest miner, which released an operational update for the three months to June 30 on Tuesday, said the $140 million cost estimate and schedule to develop a starter plant at Rincon was under review in response to cost escalation.

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Mining giant Rio Tinto dips toes in Canadian lithium projects in rare pursuit of EV metal – by Naimul Karim (Financial Post – July 10, 2023)

Signs option agreement with two Canadian lithium companies

Rio Tinto Ltd., one of the world’s largest mining companies, doesn’t currently produce any lithium, but two agreements in as many months with Canadian companies suggest the giant is quietly exploring projects containing the metal that’s expected to play a key role in powering the energy transition away from fossil fuels.

Rio on July 10 signed an option agreement for about $115.7 million with Longueuil, Que.-based Azimut Exploration Inc., giving it the opportunity to own at least 75 per cent of the Corvet and Kaanaayaa lithium properties in Quebec’s Eeyou Istchee James Bay region.

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