Toro invites public comment on Wiluna expansion

THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Toro Energy (ASX: TOE) has released its Environmental Scoping Document (ESD) for environmental assessment of extending the company’s wholly-owned and advanced Wiluna uranium project in Western Australia.

Toro explained the public release of the ESD is the next step in government environmental assessment and approval processes for the Wiluna project expansion.

Toro already has the approval of the Western Australian and Federal governments to establish a processing facility and commence mining of two of Wiluna’s deposits, Centipede and Lake Way.

The ESD provides information about Toro’s plans to integrate two additional deposits at Millipede and Lake Maitland into an expanded Wiluna project.

The company said the purpose of the ESD is to identify key environmental issues to be addressed during further government assessment of the project, and to identify the work required to complete the environmental review.

The ESD will be on public exhibition until 20 October, allowing interested parties, including members of the public, to make comments about the document to the Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority (EPA).

Toro acknowledged it will be required by the EPA to respond to comments made during the public exhibition period and to then produce a final ESD.

This will guide the preparation of a Public Environmental Review which continues the government assessment and approval process.

Toro Energy managing director Dr Vanessa Guthrie said the company’s latest public consultation is an important step in the environmental assessment process.

“Toro welcomes the opportunity to discuss our plans for the wider Wiluna project with the community, and to explain how the development of the Millipede and Lake Maitland deposits can be undertaken with the environment and local community in mind,” Guthrie said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.

“Much is already known about the environmental impacts of mining at Millipede and Lake Maitland through previous studies.

“Millipede is immediately adjacent to the Centipede deposit which was approved in October 2012 and April 2013 by the WA and Federal Governments, while the environmental conditions at the Lake Maitland deposit have been extensively studied prior to its acquisition by Toro in late 2013.

“Toro’s overarching strategy for the extended Wiluna project remains to use one central processing plant adjacent to the Centipede deposit to reduce the regional footprint and environmental impacts by avoiding a duplication of operations and infrastructure across multiple deposits.

“We look forward to consulting with the community on our expanded project and remain confident that a thorough and rigorous environmental assessment process for Millipede and Lake Maitland will be implemented by government and can be completed during 2016.”

The ESD can be viewed at the company’s website: www.toroenergy.com.au

Submissions on the ESD must be made to the EPA, not Toro.

They can be made through the EPA consultation hub at: consultation.epa.wa.gov.au

Email: info@toroenergy.com.au