The Hon Dan Tehan MP
Minister for Education

Senator the Hon Arthur Sinodinos AO
Senator for New South Wales

Lucy Wicks MP
Member for Robertson

1 October 2019

Research to transform Australia’s mining industry

Australia’s mining industry will continue to generate jobs and economic growth because of Morrison Government funded research to keep it at the forefront of innovation.

Minister for Education Dan Tehan today announced the Morrison Government would provide $35 million to establish a new research centre to develop more selective and faster methods for the separation of valuable minerals.

The Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Enabling Eco-Efficient Beneficiation of Minerals will be led by Professor Kevin Galvin and based at the University of Newcastle.

"Australia’s mining industry is a world leader when it comes to driving down costs and increasing operational efficiencies," Mr Tehan said.

"Our mining industry also makes a significant contribution to our economy, through job creation, trade and by paying taxes.

"We’re investing in research that will make operations more efficient for mineral separation, minimising losses of high-value minerals, developing new ways to remove solids from waste stream tailings and maximising water recovery."

Member for Robertson Lucy Wicks said more efficient mining operations are better for the environment and better for taxpayers.

"The centre will closely engage with industry partners and end-users, establishing new technologies, chemical reagents, and innovative processes to transform the minerals industry," Ms Wicks said.

"This project will also train a new generation of scientists and research leaders to help keep Australia ahead in the global mining innovation race.

"Our Government is investing in research that’s in the national interest and that delivers results."

Senator for NSW Arthur Sinodinos said: "The University of Newcastle has a global reputation for excellence in research and this new centre is particularly relevant given the importance of mining and energy production in the Hunter Region."

University of Newcastle Vice-Chancellor Professor Alex Zelinsky AO believes the research will lead to a sustainable future for Australia’s mining industry.

"We’re delighted to receive this significant funding, which will enable us to carry out world-leading research into developing more efficient and environmentally-friendly mining processes," Professor Zelinsky said.

"The work of the centre can help propel us closer to zero-emission mining by doubling energy and water productivity and reducing the loss of high value metals during processing by up to 90 per cent, helping secure the future of the metals we depend on for modern living.

"This is a prime example of how our university is at the forefront of providing solutions to major environmental issues."

Researchers from the University of Newcastle will collaborate with experts at seven Australian universities, and with 10 academic and industry partner organisations from Australia, Europe and America.

More information about the ARC Centres of Excellence program is on the ARC website.

 

Media Contact: media@education.gov.au