EIS for Sal de Vida Project submitted to Provincial Environmental
Agencies of Salta and Catamarca in Northern Argentina
EIS assesses construction of lithium brine ponds, battery grade lithium
carbonate plant and potash plant
EIS submission marks first step in gaining project construction approval
Sal de Vida environmental and social impact expected to be low due to
minimal local population, flora and faun
PERTH, WESTERN AUSTRALIA, Sept. 18, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Lithium producer
Galaxy Resources Ltd (ASX: GXY) ("Galaxy" or "the Company") is pleased to advise it has filed the Environmental and Social Impact
Statement ("EIS") for its Sal de Vida Lithium and Potash Brine Project ("Sal de Vida" or "the Project") in Argentina. The EIS has been submitted to the Provincial
Environmental Agencies of Salta and Catamarca as the Project straddles
both provincial boundaries.
The EIS has provided assessment of the potential environmental impacts
of the Sal de Vida Project. The Project involves construction of
evaporation ponds over a 20 square kilometre area in the northern basin
of the salt pan. The core part of the Project includes a lithium
carbonate precipitation and purification plant producing battery grade
lithium carbonate. A separate potash plant producing fertiliser grade
potash (potassium chloride) is also planned.
Galaxy holds a 70% stake in Sal de Vida, following a merger with Lithium
One Inc. this year. It is a highly prospective brine project, which the
Company believes will become its next flagship asset as it meets its
strategy of increasing its lithium resource footprint and becoming a
vertically integrated global lithium company.
The environmental and social impact of the Project is expected to be
very low due to minimal local populations and minimal flora and fauna.
The closest settlement to the future facilities for the Project is
Cienega Redonda (Catamarca) 20 kilometres away, which has 35 permanent
residents. The closest villages in the province of Salta are Salar de
Pocitos (145 km from Sal de Vida) with a population of 85 and the
village of San Antonio de los Cobres (main village in the department of
Los Andes) located 260 km by road to the north.
If the EIS is approved by the Environmental Agencies, it will then be
reviewed by the Provincial Committee of Experts for submission to the
Governors of Salta and Catamarca for final construction approval.
Galaxy representatives recently met with Salta Provincial Governor, Juan
Manuel Urtubey and Secretary of Mining of Salta, Ricardo Salas, who
both indicated strong support for the Sal de Vida Project.
Galaxy's Managing Director, Iggy Tan, said while the Company's upmost
priority is to ramp up its Jiangsu Lithium Carbonate Plant in China to
deliver positive cash flows, the background work for the development of
Sal de Vida is also important.
"We are pleased to be making inroads in the development of Sal de Vida.
The decision to proceed with the Project will be made by Galaxy in
early 2013, when the Jiangsu operation is expected to be cash flow
Sal de Vida offers Galaxy geographical, process and cost base
diversification from its existing assets in Australia and China. Galaxy
hopes to develop Sal de Vida ahead of a predicted spike in demand for
lithium-ion batteries for electronics, electric vehicle manufacture and
to power energy storage systems.
Sal de Vida's production potential is 25,000 tonnes per annum (tpa) of
battery lithium carbonate and 107,000 tpa of potash, which would be
manufactured for the fertiliser industry. The Sal de Vida brine
chemistry is highly favourable, with high levels of lithium and potash,
and low levels of magnesium and sulphate impurities.
Sal de Vida is located adjacent to FMC Lithium's El Fenix lithium
operation in the Salar del Hombre Muerto, which has been in operation
for the last 15 years. The Sal de Vida Pre-Feasibility Study ("PFS") completed in October 2011 estimated a net present value for the project
of US$1.07 billion. The average operating cost was estimated at
US$1,537 per tonne of finished lithium carbonate, generating a net pre
tax cash flow of US$139 million per annum.
About Galaxy (ASX: GXY)
Galaxy Resources Ltd ("Galaxy") is an Australian-based global lithium
company with lithium production facilities, hard rock mines and brine
assets in Australia, China, Canada and Argentina. The Company is an
integrated lithium mining, chemicals and battery company listed on the
Australian Securities Exchange (Code: GXY) and is a member of the S&P/ASX 300 Index.
Galaxy wholly owns the Mt Cattlin project near Ravensthorpe in Western
Australia where it mines lithium pegmatite ore and processes it on site
to produce a spodumene concentrate and tantalum by-product. At full
capacity, Galaxy will process 137,000 tpa of spodumene concentrate
which will feed the Company's wholly-owned Jiangsu Lithium Carbonate
Plant in China's Jiangsu province. The Jiangsu Plant has commenced
production and will produce 17,000 tpa of battery grade lithium
carbonate, the largest producer in the Asia Pacific region and the
fourth largest in the world.
Galaxy is also advancing plans to develop the Sal de Vida (70%) lithium
and potash brine project in Argentina situated in the lithium triangle
(where Chile, Argentina and Bolivia meet) which is currently the source
of 60% of global lithium production. Sal de Vida has excellent promise
as a future low cost brine mine and lithium carbonate processing
The Company completed a feasibility study for a proposed lithium-ion
battery plant, to produce 620,000 battery packs per annum for the
electric bike (e-bike) market. The Company also owns the James Bay
(100%) Lithium Pegmatite Project in Quebec, Canada.
Lithium compounds are used in the manufacture of ceramics, glass,
electronics and are an essential cathode material for long life
lithium-ion batteries used to power e-bikes and hybrid and electric
vehicles. Galaxy is bullish about the global lithium demand outlook and
is positioning itself to achieve its goal of being involved in every
step of the lithium supply chain.
Caution Regarding Forward Looking Information.
This document contains forward looking statements concerning Galaxy.
Forward-looking statements are not statements of historical fact and
actual events and results may differ materially from those described in
the forward looking statements as a result of a variety of risks,
uncertainties and other factors. Forward-looking statements are
inherently subject to business, economic, competitive, political and
social uncertainties and contingencies. Many factors could cause the
Company's actual results to differ materially from those expressed or
implied in any forward-looking information provided by the Company, or
on behalf of, the Company. Such factors include, among other things,
risks relating to additional funding requirements, metal prices,
exploration, development and operating risks, competition, production
risks, regulatory restrictions, including environmental regulation and
liability and potential title disputes.
Forward looking statements in this document are based on Galaxy's
beliefs, opinions and estimates of Galaxy as of the dates the forward
looking statements are made, and no obligation is assumed to update
forward looking statements if these beliefs, opinions and estimates
should change or to reflect other future developments.
Not For Release in US
This announcement has been prepared for publication in Australia and may
not be released in the U.S. This announcement does not constitute an
offer of securities for sale in any jurisdiction, including the United
States, and any securities described in this announcement may not be
offered or sold in the United States absent registration or an
exemption from registration under the United States Securities Act of
1933, as amended. Any public offering of securities to be made in the
United States will be made by means of a prospectus that may be
obtained from the issuer and that will contain detailed information
about the company and management, as well as financial statements.
SOURCE: Galaxy Resources Limited
For further information:
Galaxy Resources Ltd
Tel (office): +61 (0)8 9215 1700
Tel (office): +61 (0)8 9485 8888
Tel (mobile): + 61 (0)488 400 248