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WA mining project gets green light

Global law firm DLA Piper has advised OZ Minerals on its deal with the Ngaanyatjarra people for the development of a $1.7 billion mining project located in Western Australia.

user iconEmma Musgrave 05 October 2022 Big Law
WA mining project gets green light
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Firm: DLA Piper (OZ Minerals)

Deal: OZ Minerals has signed an agreement with the Ngaanyatjarra people for the development of the West Musgrave Copper-Nickel Mining Project in Western Australia.

Value: $1.7billion


Area: Environment, social and governance (ESG)

Key players: The DLA Piper team was led by partner and international sustainability and ESG lead Rhys Davies with assistance from special counsel Katherine Perincek, senior associate Matthew Roberts, solicitor Mariko Hunt and graduate Bianca Lambert.

Deal significance: According to a statement provided by DLA Piper, the project is proposed to be one of the world’s largest, lowest-cost, lowest-emissions copper-nickel mining projects, with 80 per cent of power to be sourced from wind and solar and a planned transition to an electric haulage fleet.

The signing of the agreement between OZ Minerals and the Ngaanyatjarra people marks an important next step, DLA Piper said, flagging that it will help facilitate “ongoing income for the community, create jobs and protect the land, cultural heritage and environmental values and ensure careful management of social and other impacts”.

Commenting further, lead partner on the deal Rhys Davies said: “OZ Minerals and the Ngaanyatjarra people have worked hard over a number of years to establish mutual understanding and shared objectives and are to be congratulated on this significant achievement.

“The project will create approximately 1,500 jobs during construction and approximately 400 jobs in ongoing operations.

“The agreement records the free, prior and informed consent of the Ngaanyatjarra people to the development of the West Musgrave Project and provides a basis for maintaining that consent through the life of a project intended to responsibly develop mineral resources critical to the transition, including by minimising its own emissions.”