Canadian uranium miner GoviEx Uranium Inc has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with compatriot independent power producer Windiga Energy Inc for the construction of a 20 MW hybrid solar-diesel power plant at the company’s Madaouela mine near Arlit, in northern central Niger.
GoviEx said the new facility is expected to provide electricity for approximately 25% less than the cost of traditional coal-fired options available in Niger. The cost of power produced by coal represents around 4% of the mine’s lifetime operating costs, the company said.
Windiga is conducting a feasibility study for the Madaouela project.
“Under the terms of the MoU, following a favorable result from a feasibility study, GoviEx will have an opportunity to negotiate a power purchase agreement for the priority supply of electricity for an initial term of 21 years,” GoviEx said.
Company chairman Govind Friedland said: “The benefits of renewable, lower-cost energy are obvious, and we look forward to updating our stakeholders on the results of these studies.”
The Madaouela site has one of the largest sandstone-hosted uranium deposits in the world and a mining permit for extraction was awarded by the Niger government in early 2016. GoviEx intends to start mining at the site next year.