Cadia Mine is a large open cut gold and copper mine located about 30K from Blayney and 20K south of Orange in Central West New South Wales, Australia.
The mine is operated by Newcrest Mining.
The ore body at Cadia was discovered in 1992. Construction began in 1996 and the start of operations commenced in 1998.
Cadia mine was developed throughout the late 1990s and is a major employer in the region with an expected lifespan of several decades. Cadia is the second largest open cut mine in Australia after the Super Pit at Kalgoorlie.
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In 2010 the NSW Government granted planning approval for a $2 billion expansion of the Cadia Valley gold and copper mining complex.
Cadia Holdings will develop a new underground mine to the east of the existing Cadia Hill open cut mine.
The expansion of the mine will extend its life by at least 20 years and at its peak, a new Cadia East Mine will produce gold and copper with an estimated value of approximately $1 billion per annum at today’s (2010) values.
This project will be the largest underground mining operation in Australia, and Cadia will be the second largest gold mine in the world. It’s expected delivery of more than $1 billion into the local and regional economies will also support more than 2,000 jobs in the Central West.
The council areas of Blayney, Orange and Cabonne will benefit with investments and secure jobs.
Cadia Hill Mine:
Large mineral deposits are also being uncovered from the more recently developed Ridgeway underground mine which is adjacent to the Cadia Mine.
Ridgeway mine is 3K northwest of Cadia. The deposit was discovered in 1996 approx. 500 metres below the surface. The Ridgeway mine began operation in 2000 with the Ridgeway treatment plant officially opened in 2002.
Ridgeway mine is one of the largest underground operations in Australia. In the minerals industry it is recognized as one of the most efficient underground mines in the world.
The transition from Ridgeway to the Ridgeway Deeps ore (The Ridgeway Deeps project involved developing the resources below the original Ridgeway mine) began in 2010 -2011.
Exploration drilling below the Ridgeway Deeps block cave indicates a continuation of the ore body which provides the potential for the development of a second block cave - further extending the mine life of Ridgeway.
Cadia Valley runs an active program of site tours for educational, business and general interest groups throughout the year.
Public Open Days are held at Cadia around April each year. The Open Day attracts over 3,000 visitors to the mine.
The Open Days involve - guided bus tours of the operations and an exhibition of static displays focusing on different aspects of the
minerals industry, including underground mining, environmental management of mine sites, mining careers, Cadia Valley heritage and froth flotation. Included is interactive displays and treasure hunt competitions for kids.
Tour schedules and tickets are available from the Orange Visitor Information Centre and the Blayney Tourist Information Centre.