Energetics and St Barbara Leonora Operations site personnel identified 13 energy efficiency opportunities with an estimated value of $500,000 in energy savings, whilst meeting compliance obligations of the EEO Program.
"Energetics has been an extremely capable, responsive and a technically knowledgeable partner to work with on this project. The team members were professional and a pleasure to work with. Senior managers at St Barbara Gwalia reaffirmed our selection as they were highly impressed with Energetics, their professionalism and knowledge of the industry." Jeff Waddington, Manager, Environment & Community, St Barbara Limited
St Barbara is an Australian gold producer and mineral explorer with two operations in WA; Leonora Operations and Southern Cross. St Barbara has Mineral Resources of 9.4 million ounces of gold including Ore Reserves of 2.6 million ounces of gold as at 30 June 2009.
The Leonora Operations comprise the Gwalia 1.2 Mtpa processing plant, Gwalia underground mine, diesel and LNG electricity generation and nearby development opportunities. St Barbara's Gwalia processing plant and electricity generation were commissioned in October 2008, after a period of care and maintenance, and has a mine life exceeding nine years. With a $10m+ spend on electricity, diesel and LNG each year, energy
efficiency of mine-site practices is essential for cost savings and reducing the greenhouse gas intensity of mining and processing operations.
St Barbara is captured under the Energy Efficiency Opportunities (EEO) Act and is required to report their energy consumption each year. The Energy Efficiency Opportunities Program requires that St Barbara embeds the identification of energy efficiency opportunities into their business practices.
With a proven track record in the gold industry, Energetics was engaged by St Barbara to identify energy efficiency opportunities and cost savings for their Leonora Operations, and assist with EEO compliance.
At the time that this project was undertaken, the Gwalia facility had been in operation for just over 12 months. This presented a few challenges when carrying out the task, as site priorities were focused on mine operations and production, to ensure full and efficient operation.
This meant staff availability and input to the project was limited and the data required to conduct meaningful analysis was difficult to obtain and co-ordinate.
In order to demonstrate the benefits of improved energy efficiency and the EEO process, in particular at the start-up stage of a gold production facility, Energetics focused on quantifying the potential cost savings associated with the identified opportunities. This achieved greater involvement of operational and management staff in the EEO process.
By dealing with operations and management staff directly, Energetics was able to obtain the data required to conduct meaningful analysis and to harness the knowledge and ideas of St Barbara staff. Energetics sought data, knowledge and ideas directly from electrical supervisors, underground foreman, accounts, power house operators, ventilation officer, process engineers, the General Manager, and maintenance superintendent. Through this process, Energetics staff held one on one discussions with staff to draw on their knowledge and to assign costs to the opportunities raised.
Energetics then facilitated an interactive workshop with site staff involved throughout the process. The workshop provided a forum to receive feedback on the opportunities identified and implement changes where necessary.