South Australia’s REE EIS Guidelines.

The advanced rare earths explorer Arafura Resources Ltd (ASX: ARU) has welcomed the release by the South Australian Government of guidelines for an Environmental Impact Statement on a rare earths complex at the industrial city of Whyalla.

For those not familiar with “EIS”, it stands for environmental impact statement, and governments just about everywhere now, outside of China, are well aware how mining and refining metals can have a devastating impact on the environment. Even China has announced a major environmental cleanup campaign for the current 5 year development plan that took effect last November.

This is a big step forward for Arafura Resources, who are intending to produce rare earth oxides, phosphoric acid, and small quantities of uranium oxide at their Whyalla rare earths complex in South Australia starting in 2013.  Whyalla, in case you’re wondering, is “where the outback meets the sea”,  and is an industrial and resource processing city about 250 miles NW of civilisation in Adelaide. Arafura is one of the companies I like and follow, and expect to succeed, though I don’t have a position in the company.  That will probably change though.

Below, more on Friday’s announcement.

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S Australia publishes EIS guidelines for Arafura rare earths complex
17th June 2011

PERTH (miningweekly.com) ? Rare earths developer Arafura Resources on Friday welcomed the release of South Australia’s environmental impact statement (EIS) guidelines for the proposed rare earths complex at Whyalla.

The Whyalla complex, which was granted major project status by the South Australian government last year, will process minerals concentrate from the Nolans project, in the Northern Territory.

The complex will comprise a series of chemical plants and a processing plant, where chemicals such as hydrochloric acid and sulphuric acid would leach out the rare earths, phosphate and uranium, for ultimate recovery and sale.

Arafura said that the release of the EIS guidelines, which was prepared by the Development Assessment Commission, marked a key milestone in progressing development of the Nolans project.

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For an industrial city, Whyalla actually looks like a pretty good place to live and fish.

Welcome to Whyalla 'Where the Outback Meets the Sea'. With 300+ days of sunshine per year, friendly locals and plenty to see and do Whyalla is the ideal holiday destination or place to live. Whyalla boasts spectacular outback landscapes, scenic views, vast coastline and is rich in culture and heritage. While in Whyalla why not try your hand at some of the best fishing in South Australia or take a tour on the land locked ship HMAS Whyalla. Whatever your interests there is something in Whyalla for everyone. As one of the largest regional centres in South Australia, Whyalla has all the facilities that you would expect from a city this size. From seven day a week shopping, educational precinct, sporting facilities and the fantastic boating facilities. Whyalla really has it all.

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