A landowner company, Gold Ridge Community Investment Limited (GCIL) has bought the troubled Gold Ridge mine from Australian gold miner Saint Barbara.
Pacific Islands News Association reports the sale of the mine to Gold Ridge Community Investment Limited includes all of the mine’s liabilities and a promise by Saint Barbara to fund the construction of a new water treatment plant.
Chairman of the landowner company, Walton Naezon, recently told Radio Australia’s Pacific Beat programme that Saint Barbara board made the decision to leave the mine to land owners as they negotiated to take over its ownership.
Mr Naezon adds the Landowner company is optimistic to negotiate every possibility to reopen the mine, including de-watering, getting the environment cleaned up, and preparing to seal another agreement with another mining company.
Meanwhile, Monash University environmental engineer, Dr Gavin Mudd, says it was good to see the landowners potentially getting access to long-term benefits. But he says they also expect to face big risks and costs to deal with the threat to their environment associating with risks surrounding the possible collapse of the tailings dam storage.