Mineral exploration company, Nimrodel Resources, has identified approximately 4.23 billion tonnes of raw coal resource at its 70 percent owned Takatokwane project in Botswana.
The resource, which has so far confirmed to have an average yield of 2,395 million tonnes (57 percent) is possibly the largest coal reserve in the country. This result has cemented the company management belief in the project.
“To our knowledge, this is the largest thermal coal resource to be reported within Botswana. It confirms management’s belief that the region could host a major thermal coal deposit,” Nimrodel Resources Managing Director Chris Mason said.
Mason said “the sheer size of the estimated resource has surpassed all our expectations and we are delighted at the high calorific value of the coal”.
The quantified resource will allow the company to evaluate the prospect of an open-cut mining operation after reports indicates shallow and mineable thermal coal in the area. The Director said they are currently estimating that some 50 million tonnes of coal lies within an open-cut mining.
The company is looking forward for the production of coal for export and to counter against the looming energy crisis in the country. Botswana currently imports over 50 percent of its power from South Africa alone, and this supply line is being turned off over the next three years.
The company’ independent coal consultants, Optiro Pty Ltd, quantified the resource after the company drilling campaign completed in August this year. Nimrodel drilled 14 core holes for a total of 2,255 m. The calculation of the resource was based on this drilling and other drilling previously carried out on the area.
The area was previously drilled by BP Coal Botswana Exploration in the 1970s and more recently, by Wizard Investments and Homeland Mining between 2007 and 2009.
The Takatokwane exploration area is located in the Kweneng area on the south eastern margin of the Kalahari Basin. Nimrodel has targeted the area and is to date the only operator in this region.
The Takatokwane resource statement follows Nimrodel’s signing of a Joint Venture Agreement with Triprop Energy Pty Ltd that allows for Nimrodel to acquire up to 65 percent of Triprop, the owner of four tenements that are to the south and southwest of those that comprise the Takatokwane Coal Project.
According to the company market update, as part of the agreement, Nimrodel will undertake a two-phase drilling program and a scoping study to earn its 65 percent stake of Triprop. The company commenced drilling on the Triprop property in October 2011.
The company’s focus and most advanced project are in Botswana. It has other projects in Africa, including the Lindi and Makete projects in Tanzania.