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Excavation of conveyor tunnel at Woodsmith polyhalite project progressing

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World Fertilizer,

Anglo American Chief Executive Mark Cutifani has said in an investor call that excavation of the 23 mile conveyor tunnel from Teesside, UK, to the polyhalite fertilizer mine at Whitby has reached just over 9 miles, beyond Lockwood Beck where the company is sinking a small intermediate shaft for tunnel ventilation and access.

That shaft has reached its full depth of 383 m and is being lined before connecting it to the tunnel. Cutifani also said that shaft sinking at Woodsmith Mine had begun on the service shaft. The company expects to invest around half a billion dollars (£360 million) on the project this year.

The Woodsmith Project involves digging two 1 mile deep mine shafts at Woodsmith Mine near the village of Sneaton near Whitby, and a 23 mile transportation tunnel to a processing facility and port on Teesside. Most of the surface infrastructure at Woodsmith Mine is being built underground and the site landscaped to minimise the visual impact on the surrounding countryside. It will mine a giant deposit of the mineral polyhalite, which will be sold as a natural, low carbon environmentally friendly fertilizer.

The company also revealed that 1300 people are now employed full-time in the construction of the project, up from 1000 at the end of last year, and will shortly hire more than a dozen local apprentices to add to the 14 already employed on the project. Hundreds more contractors and local companies are engaged in the supply chain.

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