Sibanye-Stillwater has two advanced gold projects underway in South Africa – Burnstone, a developmental stage project, and the Southern Free State (SOFS) project, an exploration project.
At 31 December 2021, these projects had a combined gold Mineral Reserve of 2.6Moz and combined gold resources of 16.0Moz.
Burnstone is a shallow developmental stage gold mine and processing operation located in the South Rand Goldfield of the Witwatersrand Basin next to the town of Balfour in the Mpumalanga Province of South Africa, 75km east of Johannesburg.
At 31 December 2021, Burnstone contained surface and underground gold Mineral Reserves of 2.6Moz and Mineral Resources of 9.1Moz.
The mining right for Burnstone is valid from 17 February 2009 to 16 February 2027, covering a total area of 13,135ha.
The Burnstone asset was acquired with the purchase of junior exploration company Wits Gold in July 2014. Burnstone, which was formerly operated as a mine until placed on care and maintenance in mid-2012, comprises two established shaft complexes, a 125,000 ton per month carbon-in-leach gold processing plant, tailings storage facility and related surface infrastructure and mining rights. Prior to 2012, Burnstone had produced approximately 38,000oz of gold.
The mining right for Burnstone is valid from 17 February 2009 to 16 February 2027 and covers a total area of 13,135ha.
Burnstone’s feasibility study was approved by Sibanye in 2015 and site workal started in 2017. Access development was, however, stopped in May 2018 due to company cash requirements and the focus shifted to establishing underground engineering infrastructure in preparation for mining production.
In the first quarter of 2021, the Sibanye-Stillwater Board approved the resumption of the Burnstone project, following completion of a revised mining study. The project aims to target steady state production of approximately 90ktpm (~0.14Moz) within eight years.
The Southern Free State (SOFS) project is an advanced exploration stage project that includes the Bloemhoek, De Bron-Merriespruit, Robijn and Hakkies areas. It is located adjacent to our Beatrix operation near the town of Welkom in the Free State province of South Africa, 240 km south-west of Johannesburg.
At 31 December 2021, the SOFS project reported surface and underground gold Mineral Resources of 6.9Moz.
We acquired the SOFS assets on our acquisition of Wits Gold in July 2014. These assets include the mining and prospecting rights formerly held by Wits Gold. In June 2017, a mining right consolidating four areas of the property (Bloemhoek, De Bron Merriespruit, Hakkies and Robijn) was approved for a 23-year period and executed. The mining right is contiguous to the north-east of the Beatrix mining right.
A prefeasibility study on the Bloemhoek decline project completed in 2019 demonstrated the economic potential for extraction of the orebody below and to the north of the current Beatrix 3 Shaft infrastructure into the mining right area. A positive definitive feasibility study has been completed for this project and is under assessment.