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Williams Mine recognized for participation in the Sustainable Leak Prevention Program

Wednesday, September 26th 2007 12:17:22pm

Media Release - Attention News and Assignment Editors

Ontario’s Chief Energy Conservation Officer awards Certificate of Recognition to local mine at the Marathon-Hemlo Mining and Prospecting Expo

(Marathon, ON, September 26, 2007)  Peter Love, Ontario’s Chief Energy Conservation Officer, provided the Keynote Address at the Second Annual Marathon–Hemlo Mining and Prospecting Expo.

After thanking the organizers, Mr. Love reminded the Expo attendees that as mining industry representatives and industrial electricity consumers they are important partners in energy efficiency endeavors, and while much still needs to be done, there are success stories.    

Mr. Love observed that with the theme of the Expo being "Environmental, Exploration and Innovation Excellence in the mining and natural resource industries,” it was only logical that he presented Williams Mine with a Certificate of Recognition for participation in the Ontario Mining Association’s (OMA) Sustainable Leak Prevention Program (SLPP).  Accepting the Certificate from Williams Mine was the Williams Mine Team of Andrew Baumann, Dave Schmidt, Dan Atkinson, Roy Carruthers, and Rudy Wahl.

The SLPP, funded by the Conservation Fund of the Ontario Power Authority, undertook compressed air systems audits at three major Ontario mines. The intent of the SLPP was to improve energy efficiency and it has resulted in saving hundreds of thousands of dollars in mine site operation costs annually.

Mr. Love mentioned he had presented certificates to Sudbury area mines, CVRD Inco’s South Mine and FNX Mining’s McCreedy West Mine at a ceremony in Sudbury in May.

Mr. Love observed, “Mines participating in the OMA project saw almost immediate results in energy savings. Even gold mines have to think about saving money.”

Love went on to describe some of the successes reported from the three sites, which included fixing one leak which led to the shutting down of a 200 HP compressor; instituting best practices into new mine development; the building of  a culture of conservation at work and at home; improved installation and maintenance of couplings; successful conservation measures resulting in deferring decisions to purchase new compressors; use of variable speed compressors; and the benefits of baseline data to keep improving the system.

He concluded by saying, “As the people in this room already know, Ontario’s mining industry spends over $500 million on energy every year. This translates into as much as 15% to 30% of their total operating costs. Compressed air systems, found in underground mines, are one of the largest contributors to electricity costs. Compressed air consumption can represent between 20% and 40% of energy costs at a mine. Even small air leaks in these systems can increase electricity costs substantially by causing compressors to overwork, leading to wasted electricity and higher operating costs.”


For further information, please contact:

Conservation Bureau/Ontario Power Authority Media Hotline at 416-969-6307

For high resolution photos, contact Brent Kulba, 416-972-7401

The Chief Energy Conservation Officer assumes leadership for developing and implementing energy conservation initiatives, advising on relevant government policy and targets for conservation, and educating and promoting energy conservation to all Ontarians.  The CECO is an integral member of the Ontario Power Authority’s senior executive team.  For more information, see www.conservationbureau.on.ca.

The Conservation Fund was established in 2005 to provide funding for action-oriented, sector-specific electricity conservation pilot projects that help build a culture of conservation in Ontario. Since 2005, the Conservation Fund has provided $2.5 million to 37 projects in a wide variety of sectors including mining, forestry, agriculture, small business, schools, hospitals and religious institutions. Every dollar of the funding has leveraged over two dollars in partner support. The 2007 Conservation Fund budget is $3 million. For more information, see www.conservationbureau.on.ca.

The Sustainable Leak Prevention Program (SLPP) was started by the OMA in 2006 with financial support and encouragement from the Ontario Power Authority along with monetary and in-kind assistance from the mines which participated in the pilot  studies-- CVRD Inco South Mine, FNX Mining McCreedy West Mine and the Williams Mine. Coordination was provided by Cheryl Brownlee, OMA Manager Energy Issues, and the members of the OMA Energy Committee.