The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of Ghana had lifted the temporary suspension on Gold Fields’ Tarkwa gold mine’s heap leach facilities last week, Gold Fields said on Friday. Tarkwa reopened both the north and south heap leach facilities on Thursday after they were closed on July 16 to comply with an EPA directive that water discharges should be passed through a water treatment plant to reduce conductivity levels. Gold Fields believes that Tarkwa was complying with the prescribed conductivity levels in its water discharges, but it has nonetheless commissioned the construction of two water treatment plants at the heap leach facilities. The plants are expected to be operational before the end of the year.
The estimated impact on gold production as a result of the closure was about 15 000 ounces, less than 10 percent of the mine’s quarterly output, it said. Gold Fields stock rose 3.04 percent to R109.30 on Friday. – Staff reporter