30 January 2013 - Project delivery, engineering, and advisory services provider Aurecon, is committed to African economic development through its work in mining and resources development projects.
Aurecon will be participating in Africa’s largest mining event, Mining Indaba, in Cape Town, 4–7 February 2013.
Aurecon is the largest multi-disciplinary engineering consultancy in South Africa, and has 12 offices across the continent. Through its work over the past 30 years delivering whole of life capability across mine facilities, encompassing roads, buildings, energy, fuel, water, control systems, communications, airstrips and waste, Aurecon has gained a strong understanding of the complex nature of developing the continent’s mining resources.
Ross Nugent, Industry Director, Resources, at Aurecon says: “It is a natural progression for us to want to continue to contribute to the economic development of Africa.
“Aurecon’s proven pit to port infrastructure expertise, combined with a local footprint in many African countries, provides a solid platform from which the Company is able to help meet the demand for key infrastructure, which is a priority for Africa achieving its full economic growth potential,” Ross adds.
Mark Berger, Africa and Middle East Technical Director and Resources Industry Leader notes: “Complimenting its infrastructure expertise is Aurecon’s skill at negotiating critical agreements and managing permit and project approvals in a timely fashion.”
Aurecon is actively involved in African mining projects and is currently undertaking non-process infrastructure work in South Africa, an order of magnitude study in Mozambique and a bankable study for a project in Zambia.
Responding to rising infrastructure capital costs
“We drive improved sustainability outcomes and life-of-mine operability through our renowned sustainable development, whole-of-life asset management processes and alternative method of delivering projects through the JK Aurecon alliance,” Mark says.
JK Aurecon is a strategic alliance between Aurecon and mining services company JKTech. The alliance delivers client solutions, effectively reducing total costs on resources projects.
Designed for staged implementation of smart infrastructure and life of mine optionality, the JK Aurecon delivery method optimises risk and increases value throughout the project by considering infrastructure within the geometallurgy and mine design programme.
Social investment and sustainable development are integral components
Community involvement in mine and infrastructure development is also a significant issue in African economic development. Mark says: “In our experience this is often achieved through labour-intensive projects for low-tech infrastructure construction and maintenance, such as roads and mine housing. It is a method that is proving to be an effective means of positive community engagement, CSR and developing community skills, as well as income generation beyond corporate, government or aid handouts.”
Mark goes on to say: “When it comes to assisting our clients with their social licence to operate requirements, something which is becoming increasingly important in the industry, both on new and existing operations, Aurecon has an impressive track record. Engagement with local communities, relevant on the job training and subsequent enterprise development and ongoing support, all contribute to the overall sustainability of a project.”
The SUSOP (SUStainable OPerations) methodology for sustainable development, developed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Sustainable Resource Processing – a collaboration of some of Australia's leading research organisations and major resource companies - can assist strategy development and prioritisation of such programmes. The methodology generates a complete risk register to ensure community, environmental, security/safety and approvals risks are considered and studied and receive equal or greater importance to technical mine, processing and infrastructure needs.
“Aurecon, with its expertise across Africa and Australia in engineering, procurement and construction management of bulk material handling projects including mine, rail, seaboard import and export terminals, and associated port and marine works facilities is more than ready to play a significant role in addressing Africa’s infrastructure challenges in a socially responsible and sustainable way” Ross concludes.