Ranger resumes operation as rain ends

14 June 2011

The progressive restart of processing operations at the Ranger uranium mine will begin on 15 June following the end of wet season rains, Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) announced. A 12-week suspension of operations at the mine began in late January as a precaution to help ensure that water levels in the plant's tailings storage facility remained below the authorised operating limit throughout the wet season. In mid-April, ERA extended this suspension until late July due to a wetter than average rainy season in Northern Territory. However, dry weather since late April has led to water levels falling at the mine and the company has decided to resume operations earlier than previously expected. ERA expects normal production levels at the Ranger processing plant to be reached in about one month. As a result of the shorter suspension, the company expects its 2011 first half loss to be A$20-30 million ($21-32 million), less than the previous estimate of A$30-50 million ($32-52 million).