Sustaining Mine to Mill at Teck
CIM Vancouver 2016
Mr David MarkRichards (Manager, Mining Technology - Teck Resources Limited)
Mine to Mill is about reducing unit production cost by removing traditional departmental barriers between the mine and mill departments. A key focus of Mine to Mill is increasing blast fragmentation to increase mill throughput. Increased blasting costs are offset by reduced comminution costs further along the process.
Teck started using the Mine to Mill approach at the Highland Valley Copper Mine in the 1990’s, resulting in a significant increase in throughput and reduction in total production costs. However, sustaining the initiative proved difficult due to competing site priorities. Since 2012, Teck has re-started the Mine to Mill program at Highland Valley and initiated programs at its Red Dog and Carmen de Andacollo mines. While Mine to Mill is a site-based initiative, a steering committee including site management and Teck Corporate Operational Excellence has been instrumental in ensuring that lessons learned at other sites are quickly and effectively shared across the operations and that the initiatives are sustained at each site.