18-02-2015, 06:09 AM
It's not so great across the Tasman, either.
18/2/2015 — General
Geoscience jobs continue to fall in Australia
By Ross Louthean
One of the major geosciences bodies in Australia has raised concerning statistics that also impact on professional employment in New Zealand.
The Australian Institute of Geoscientists (AIG) this week released figures showing that unemployment for geoscientists was continuing to rise.
The degree of the problem has been well shown in news reports showing massive cutbacks in the Pilbara iron ore fields and coal fields of Queensland and New South Wales.
There is also the fact that more than 80 listed junior explorers on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) have “zombie” classifications – insufficient funds to last the next six months without considering exploration.
AIG said its latest survey for the December quarter showed that an uptick in jobs in the previous quarter was short lived.
The survey showed the unemployment rate among 666 respondents in the latest survey was 15.5%, a full 2% higher than the rate for the end of the September quarter. The under-employment rate in the latest survey among self employed geoscientists rose to 16.9% from 15.4% in the previous quarter.
The unemployment rate of 15.5% was the second highest recorded since the AIG started this survey in mid 2009.
“The combined unemployment and underemployment rate of 32.4% was also the second highest recorded by this survey,” the AIG said.
Self-employed geoscientists continued to struggle with more than a third unable to secure more than 10% of their desired workload. Were these self-employed geoscientists to be considered to be essentially unemployed, the overall unemployment rate would be a staggering 21.3% - more than one in every five geoscientists in Australia today.
The latest survey showed 12.2% of the geoscientists lost their jobs in the previous three months. Almost 40% had been unemployed for more than a year.
The survey showed more than 66% of unemployed or under-employed geoscientsits were not confident of returning to full time employment in their chosen field within 12 months, and 6% were seeking alternate employment.
“The increase in unemployment amongst Australia’s geoscientists in the final quarter of 2014 will be seen as very disheartening by many in the profession,” commented AIG president, Wayne Spilsbury.
“The employment downturn, since it peaked at the end of 2013, has shown little sign of improvement whereas the GFC in 2008 to 2009 was a short, sharp event.
“The current, continuing downturn appears to be a product of sustained depressed commodity prices which has dampened equity markets, contributing to a marked decrease in exploration funding that is essential to the sustainability of Australia’s minerals and energy resource industries and Australia’s continued economic prosperity,” Spilsbury added.
Western Australia, which had been the boom State that also was a mecca for geoscientists and other mining professionals and skilled workers from New Zealand, has borne the brunt of the downturn.
Spilsbury said that some promised incentives and initiatives from the Federal and some Australian State governments have failed to stop the rot.
Another peak industry body, the AusIMM, has been raising concerns about the massive loss of jobs for its members, which include geoscientists, mining engineers and metallurgists.
21-02-2015, 08:57 AM
In the first bit of news since - well - months ago, Newmont has been officially awarded 50% of the Waihi West permit that was previously recorded as 100% Glass Earth's. No money would have changed hands, this is just a tidyup. Newmont can do a bit more work and gain 60% of the permit.
This is permit EP40767, NZPAM have not updated the records yet.
Last edited by elZorro; 21-02-2015 at 09:06 AM.
25-02-2015, 06:02 AM
A followup from the Newmont side: to inform the public what's going on, they have this info in NZResources:
Last I heard, the exploration dept at Newmont Waihi Gold had been severely reduced. They would still be able to use local drilling rig contractors to perform some drills from discreet sites, and this seems to be what they have done.
25/2/2015 — Gold
Newmont outlines Waihi West role
The North Island’s sole major hard rock gold miner, Newmont Waihi Gold said that with closure of the Martha open pit scheduled to occur next year, and the new Correnso underground mine having a known resource for only a few years, it makes sense for the company to advance a regional joint venture in the area.
Newmont Waihi Gold (NWG) is a subsidiary of global gold miner Newmont Mining Corporation.
The company has now earned a 50% stake in the Waihi West property of Antipodes Gold Ltd (TSX-V & NZAX: AXG).
This property is adjacent to NWG’s Martha open cut which has been the biggest historic gold producer on the North Island, and it is also adjacent to NWG’s recently completed Trio underground mine.
“What this means is that we have been funding and conducting the exploration work on and off since 2006, and this has now earned us a half share of the prospect and formalised the joint venture,” said NWG’s external affairs coordinator Kit Wilson.
Wilson says this type of arrangement was normal in the mining industry where junior exploration companies such as Antipodes may hold a tenement and the right to explore or prospect in the area, but they do not have the financial backing to be able to conduct all the work.
Newmont has the same joint venture agreement with Antipodes Gold at the Wharekirauponga (WKP) tenement on the Coromandel Peninsula.
Kit Wilson said Newmont was currently conducting exploration drilling from the closed Trio mine under residential areas to the south-west in the Antipodes Gold tenement, and from inside the Martha open pit under farmland to the north-west in a tenement held by Newmont.
“We have always said that we would like to be here for the long term. We also have always said that just because we are drilling in an area this does not mean that mining will follow. As an example, in the last three decades we have drilled just over 300 kilometres of core and developed just three mines. That’s enough drill core to stretch from Waihi to Coromandel town three times over.”
Coincidentally, the Antipodes Gold website was unavailable last night, and is still down. Getting a makeover?
Edit: no link to www.antipodesgold.com. Try www.antipodesgold.co.nz (that works). Not a free website anymore..
Now I'm wondering that if Newmont is the third party looking over AXG, although at current share prices it could be anyone, their main interest could be that permit under part of Waihi Town. Yet there has been virtually nothing mentioned about this permit by GEL or AXG for years. Originally there was some mention of the aeromagnetic data in the area suggesting that there could be known gold veins from the east of the site extending into the permit. GEL were never allowed to make much noise about the permit, a directive from their JV partner. It has always been effectively in Newmont's control.
From 2013: Newmont announced they were having a quiet look.
Last edited by elZorro; 25-02-2015 at 06:08 PM.
25-02-2015, 06:38 AM
NZResources added some detail in May 2013.
22/5/2013 — Gold
Newmont Waihi evaluates South and West Waihi permits
The community conscious miner Newmont Waihi Gold has detailed activity it has been undertaking on areas in Waihi with Glass Earth Gold Ltd (TSX-V and NZAS: GEL).
Newmont Waihi said Glass Earth Gold holds exploration permit 40767 which covers a predominantly residential area south and west of the Martha mine.
Newmont Waihi was conducting surveys on part of the permit where it can earn an interest by conducting work to an “agreed specified value.”
Once this value is reached Newmont Waihi can formalise a joint venture agreement.
There have been varying levels of interest in this area over the last 50 years with some drilling undertaken in the 1960s and other exploration since. Nothing of any interest has ever been identified.
Newmont Waihi Gold was currently undertaking gravity surveys in Waihi West that involves a technician with a roving monitor spending about 10 minutes beside the road at each location.
A gravity survey detects variations in the earth’s gravity field that indicate variable density of the rocks beneath the ground.
For example, Newmont Waihi said, the Waihi Basin - the flat land to the south of Waihi - is characterised by a large circular gravity low that indicates that that area was once a large caldera, similar to Lake Taupo. The gravity low indicates that the Waihi Basin is filled to considerable depth with volcanic deposits that have a much lower density than the surrounding hills.
There have been several gravity surveys carried out in the area previously, but they have not been evenly spaced. In some areas the survey points are close together and in other areas there is very little coverage.
Where the stations are closer together more detail is apparent in the resulting processed data. This new survey will ‘fill in the gaps’.
The current survey is attempting to improve the district-wide resolution to make it easier to interpret data. The copany said it was not expected the data will reveal details such as the presence of veins. It is aiming to assess whether some of the larger geological features interpreted from previous drilling can be detected through their gravity response.
“Our work in Waihi West is one part of the exploration programme Newmont Waihi Gold is engaged in as we continue to determine what, if any, areas should be considered for further investigation,” the company said.
“This is all part of the exploration process. It is lengthy and detailed, taking place over years rather than weeks or days. We are very used to acquiring what some may consider ‘discouraging’ results, but that is the nature of the activity.”
Newmont Waihi said that in the Waihi West area of the permit the exploration there was not related to the company’s Correnso discovery closer to the Martha mine.
“It is coincidental that the work in Waihi West was scheduled for this time. There is no connection between the Correnso announcement and the start of work in Waihi West.
“We have not identified an ore body under Waihi West despite conducting exploration activities including drilling since 2006.
“If the current exploration activities suggest there is merit in a closer look at the area we will employ other more precise techniques. At this stage, however, we have nothing to report other than routine investigations over a wide area.”
04-03-2015, 06:22 AM
One of my old 2012 posts from this thread gives some detail on the Waihi West Permit, EP40767, direct from Simon Henderson.
Its ownership has not been officially changed yet. It is due to expire in December 2015, but there will be an application to extend the duration I'm sure.
Since Newmont are drilling from the Trio Mine, which is just outside the RHS or East of the 40767 permit, it would seem that they are concentrating on the area of the permit closest to the Correnso find. That would make sense from a logistics point of view, and they have done gravity surveys. The Correnso find was also a vertical cone shape, I think.
They are also drilling in a NorthWest direction into a Newmont-held tenement, that would possibly be drilling from the northern side of the Martha pit wall, a different target.
This dewatering report from the local council also shows some of the local faults. They run into the Waihi West permit. Looks like there have been mine shafts/inclines into the area from the Martha Pit, as well. They show up as settlement areas.
Speaking on General Security Deeds of the type AXG provided to Newmont: if this one from Rabobank is anything to go on, it's not the type of document that you enjoy signing. Newmont are using something like this for security over outstanding obligations by AXG, for both WKP and Waihi West.
Last edited by elZorro; 04-03-2015 at 08:11 PM.
17-03-2015, 06:05 PM
The local radio station at Waihi (Gold FM) seems to be a font of information about the Newmont operations there. In a recent interview, Kit Wilson was asked for his comments on a range of topics.
In particular for AXG investors, this part about the exploratory drilling isn't quite so hot:
The whole interview is here: http://www.goldfm.co.nz/general-news...-ender-update/
Question: You are conducting exploration drilling to the northwest of the Martha open pit and to the southwest of the completed Trio mine under Union Hill. What does this involve? Where are you drilling from and to? How do you drill? Is it underground? Is this part of the Martha Project?
Answer: Newmont is drilling out from the Martha pit and from the Trio underground mine which is finished. "What we're doing is having a last look to make sure that we're not leaving anything behind before we move into closure mode. We haven't got anything else at the present time so this is our last look."
Last edited by elZorro; 17-03-2015 at 06:07 PM.
25-03-2015, 06:45 AM
Newmont has put out another press release about exploratory drilling. This time there is a bit of detail. It shows one long drill area heading West into the 50% AXG Waihi West permit from the completed Trio mine, and surprisingly another smaller drill from the Martha Pit towards the northern part of the same permit, in the area where it borders on a fully owned Newmont permit.
"Just looking, thanks"
28-03-2015, 08:12 AM
Antipodes Gold has just put out a news release, I was googling, not expecting to see anything, it has been out for about an hour. This means that the Canadian market can trade on it, but it's the weekend in NZ. Typical of AXG management. The bigger money gets looked after first.
Newmont has intercepted a sizeable gold vein in Waihi West.
Newmont have their own assay lab, or a tame assay lab, so they will have known about these results for a while, as they were being tested. A few weeks ago I posted on this thread that Glass Earth Gold still technically had 100% ownership of the Waihi West permit, and that it was not quite the case. I was surprised to see a flurry of reads of that post, and soon after Newmont had obviously applied a legal document to that permit, and WKP, ensuring their interests were properly noted.
Anyway, I'll have a look at the release, it's just the results from one drill, but the grade is up to nearly half an ounce, that's not too shabby for a 10mtr wide vein.
28-03-2015, 08:58 AM
Originally Posted by elZorro
Sounds like there could be the tiniest bit of hope regarding my pitiful GEL holding, wait I mean AXG.
Last edited by Carpenterjoe; 28-03-2015 at 09:26 AM.
Reason: Brain Fart
28-03-2015, 09:28 AM
Hi Carpenterjoe, I sold off my AXG shares in 2014 so I wouldn't waste too much time and energy worrying about it. The reason I was involved at all was because with so many permits, surely one of them had to work at some stage. I waited for a few years and didn't see it through. Note that now they just have part ownership in the WKP area and Waihi West, and the latter permit was never mentioned much because Newmont was really in control of it. That's a good thing, because they always have the capital and the proximity to be able to do something. What happens next, when AXG is asked to stump up for some more cash to co-fund drilling at the 40% rate? The cupboard is bare, well, worse than bare. AXG will surely need a cash injection of say $2-4mill just to see them through some more drilling and to stay in the game. At the moment, the TSX says the company is worth about $400k, twice what it was worth three hours ago. That spells even more share dilution, the likes of which the sharemarket doesn't see too often. GEL/AXG had only a brief time when it was valued at more than the cash thrown at it by shareholders. I think it has burned through $35-45mill so far, its a lot anyway.
Originally Posted by Carpenterjoe
If AXG rebounds on the market to 15c and holds (instead of falling to 1.5c) just on this press release, that would be a good starting place for capital raising. It's a long way up to there though.
Hence AXG is looking at restructuring with an anonymous third party. Could the third party be Newmont, or one of the many investment vehicles run by Geoff Loudon?
Last edited by elZorro; 28-03-2015 at 09:47 AM.
28-03-2015, 03:50 PM
Originally Posted by elZorro
I had written this investment off ages ago, the third party will pretty much own the whole company.
29-03-2015, 01:03 PM
Yes, someone is going to have to be very brave or deep pocketed, that's for sure.
Originally Posted by Carpenterjoe
Since Newmont have given the locals a bit of a heads up with the drilling program in a general way, I have taken a wild guess at what the drill 908SP50703 is all about. It may have been collared from underground workings at Trio mine, right on the outer edge of the Waihi West permit. It could be about 360 meters underground at the start point, and went 300 metres or so into the Waihi West permit, horizontally. At that point it intercepted a 10 mtr wide quartz vein, vertical perhaps. That sort of a structure is similar to Correnso, it laid dormant and undiscovered for a long time.
Or the drill might have been collared from the West wall of the Martha pit, in which case I'm wildly off beam.
However, the colourful and plain English "Current Exploration Activity" one-page document of March 12 2015 mentions in three different panels:
Newmont probably has Boart Longyear contractors doing the drilling. They appear to be looking in four different directions around the Martha Pit, two of them heading into the Waihi West permit.
...vertical vein systems prevalent in this area. Drilling from underground means we can drill shorter holes at right angles to the vein systems to intercept them...(fishing analogy) The nibble doesn't mean that you will get anything, or you may get an undersized fish that you have to throw back. In any case, you don't shout out that you got a bite, you wait until you have landed a decent fish..
(Gardening analogy) It took forty exploration drill holes to "find all the potatoes"and confirm the extent and grade of the main section of the Correnso ore body.
Last edited by elZorro; 29-03-2015 at 07:24 PM.
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