MTA-AUS 2014

CONEXPO-CON/AGG VIP SHOW GUIDE contains Floor Plans and a complete listing of companies exhibiting at the ConExpo-Con/Agg 2014 trade show in Las Vegas March 3-7, 2014. It also contains 2014 forecasts for the Aggregate, Concrete and Cement industries

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Page 48 of 87

MINING & TECHNOLOGY AUSTRALIA 2014 | ISSUE 8 47 Ore exports through Whyalla and Port Pirie continue to grow and are expected to increase signifcantly as new mines come on stream. The future of exports through Port Lincoln is unclear, but it is a highly capable deep-water port that may provide interim solutions whilst a new deep water port is put in place. The building of new bulk port facilities at Port Bonython in the Upper Spencer Gulf, a 23km rail connection to the interstate main line, and possibly, a rail link from the isolated narrow gauge networks on Eyre Peninsula to the national network will ultimately be necessary whilst new rail spurs may be justifed to connect sustainable mines to ports. Cape Hardy on Eyre Peninsula, and Wallaroo / Myponie Point on Yorke Peninsula are expected to initially develop as deep water ports (15-20 metres draft) to service specifc company requirements and could expand into multi-user ports as mine development progresses. Signifcant rail infrastructure will be required to move ores and concentrates, with particular atention to rail capacity, speed and gauge. IMX's Cairn Hill Iron Ore Project which commenced operations in December 2010 has already added several trains in each direction to the network and Arrium's Peculiar Knob Project has recently come on stream and is taking up further capacity. There are a host of other potential mines assessing rail based logistics options which, if proven viable, will signifcantly increase the demand for train paths on key elements of the national rail network. Rail capacity is dependent on crossing loops and therefore additional, longer loops are required to cope with longer trains, an expected increase in the overall number of trains, and to facilitate the interaction of trains travelling at diferent speeds. Axle load restrictions may also present limitations to train capacity in the future. ARTC's current investment in the Advanced Train Management System (ATMS) may improve network capacity, reliability, transit times and on-time performance in the short term. SAFC believes that the Tarcoola-Crystal Brook portion of the interstate main line network in particular, including the Whyalla spur, will be logistically important for many mines in the region, but it is already close to capacity, necessitating installation of new crossing loops and potentially eventual duplication. A rail bypass of Port Augusta will improve amenity in the township and a new connection to the Port Augusta- Whyalla rail spur (commonly referred to as the 'Port Augusta Triangle') will improve access to Port Bonython and Whyalla from the west and north of the State. While mines generally require goods in large quantities transported to them by rail, intermodal terminals, where volumes are sufcient to support a business case, will facilitate the transfer of freight from road and sea to rail. Terminal developments in strategic metropolitan and regional areas can also alleviate some of the demand for investment to accommodate High Productivity Vehicles (HPVs). The Bowmans terminal near Balaklava seems to be well placed in this regard. That being said, investment in our roads will be critical to the success of South Australia's mining industry, especially considering the anticipated increase in B-Triple trucks, Road Trains and innovative new High Productivity Vehicles (HPVs) on the state's road network. These HPVs require an expansion of capacity on key roads leading to and from mines to alleviate the much talked about First/Last Mile issues which hamper their use across the network. To ensure the safety of all road users, SAFC and others have advocated for an increased number of passing lanes on roads anticipating increased trafc. These roads will also require regular maintenance and engineering improvements, including wider lanes and improved lines of sight, to ensure the much needed HPV access. One road in particular that will require atention is the Princes Highway: Port Wakefeld to Port Augusta, a key corridor which links Adelaide and its facilities (e.g. the container terminal) to the prospective mining regions in the north and west of the state. The Commonwealth and state governments have invested heavily in this road in recent times but this route, which also links communities and caters for signifcant tourist volumes, will see an increasing volume of trucks as new mines develop, and will require a signifcant upgrade to ensure ongoing safety and to keep up with expanding demand. More passing lanes and town bypasses (especially Port Wakefeld) will be needed, and ultimately duplication when volumes warrant. Yorkey's Crossing requires an upgrade to frmly establish it as an alternative route to Highway 1 around the Port Augusta township. This unsealed route acts as the designated over-dimensional route, a function that will be critical when it comes to moving large pieces of equipment and processing modules around the region, and should be upgraded to facilitate all weather usage. A reasonable downpour quickly leads to closure of the corridor. The Strzelecki Track is another example of a poorly maintained unsealed road which is critical for the expanding oil and gas industry in the state's North-East corner. An immediate upgrade and eventual sealing will be crucial to the area's future prospects.

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