Table 1: Operating Mines

Table 1. Australia's Ore Reserves and Mineral Resources of selected commodities at operating mines in 2018

This table provides short-term (Ore Reserves) and long-term (Mineral Resources) views of Australia's minerals inventory at operating mines. For further information about Australia's minerals inventory see Table 2 (Australia's Ore Reserves) and Table 3 (Australia's Identified Mineral Resources and World Figures). See Table 5 (World Rankings) for a global outlook on Australia's production and resources and see Table 6 (Reserve and Resource Life) for an indication of Australia's potential to continue supplying minerals.

CommodityUnit No. of Operating Mines1 Ore Reserves2 Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources3 Inferred Mineral Resources4 Mine Production5 Reserve Life (years) Resource Life 1 (years) Resource Life 2 (years)
Antimony kt Sb 1 17.3 40.9 15.4 3.576 5 11 16
Bauxite Mt 10 1956 3202 3646 96.5 20 33 71
Black Coal Mt 95 12 592 26 0307 13 1417 5788 22 45 68
Copper Mt Cu 36 19.13 72.32 30.97 0.920 21 79 112
Diamond Mc 2 24.81 24.94 19.23 14.01 2 2 3
Gold t Au 141 2872 6689 2458 315 9 21 29
Iron Ore Mt 34 11 610 25 538 40 111 899 13 28 73
Lead Mt Pb 15 10.61 24.25 4.42 0.469 23 52 61
Lithium kt Li 7 2680 3295 1200  579 47 58 79
Manganese Ore Mt 3 92 196 29 7.010 13 32 37
Mineral Sands
Ilmenite Mt 12 15.3 56.1 14.8 1.411 11 40 51
Rutile Mt 10 2.1 7.6 2.1 0.211 11 38 49
Zircon Mt 10 4.5 13.4 2.9 0.511 9 27 33
Nickel Mt Ni 12 1.1 5.5 1.1 0.148 7 37 45
Rare Earths12 Mt 2 1.71 2.12 1.37 0.01913 90 112 184
Silver kt Ag 2314 19.64 53.30 12.27 1.220 16 44 54
Tin kt Sn 1 167 224 97 6.915 24 32 47
Uranium kt U 3 258 1425 752 5.872 44 243 371
Zinc Mt Zn 16 22.44 49.46 11.86 1.112 20 44 55

Abbreviations
t = tonne; kt = kilotonnes (1000 t); Mt = million tonnes (1 000 000 t); Mc = million carats (1 000 000 carats).
Where an element symbol follows the unit it refers to contained metal content.

Notes
Reserve Life = Ore Reserves ÷ Production.
Resource Life 1 = Measured and Indicated Resources ÷ Production.
Resource Life 2 = Measured, Indicated and Inferred Resources ÷ Production.

1. The number of operating mines counts individual mines that operated during 2018 and thus contributed to production. Some of these mines may belong to larger, multi-mine operations and some may have closed during or since 2018.

2. The majority of Australian Ore Reserves and Mineral Resources are reported in compliance with the JORC Code, however there are a number of companies that report to foreign stock exchanges using other reporting codes, which are largely equivalent. In addition, Geoscience Australia may hold confidential information for some commodities. NB: Not all operating mines report Ore Reserves. Ore Reserves are as at 31 December 2018.

3. Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources are inclusive of the Ore Reserves. NB: Not all operating mines report Mineral Resources. Mineral Resources are as at 31 December 2018.

4. Inferred Mineral Resources are as at 31 December 2018. NB: Not all operating mines report Mineral Resources.

5. Mining production from Resources and Energy Quarterly, June 2019, published by the Office of the Chief Economist, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science unless otherwise stated. Production data often have a higher level of certainty than reserve and resource estimates and, thus, may be presented with more significant figures.

6. Antimony production from company reports (Mandalay Resources Ltd).

7. Measured, Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources for black coal are presented on a recoverable basis (these are Geoscience Australia estimates unless provided by the company).

8. Mine production refers to raw coal.

9. Lithium production data from Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety, Western Australian Government, 2018–2019 Major commodities resources file.

10. Australian manganese production from company reports and total reported production from Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety, Western Australian Government, 2018–2019 Major commodities resources file.

11. Mineral sands production from company reports.

12. Rare earths comprise rare earth oxides (REO) and yttrium oxide (Y2O3).

13. Rare earths production is based on Western Australian production of concentrates from Mount Weld (18 556 t) and from trial mining and processing at Browns Range (2.6 t).

14. Major silver producing mines only; many gold and copper mines also produce silver as a by-product but these are not counted here.

15. The Office of the Chief Economist reports tin production of 6.9 kt in 2018 but Renison, Australia’s only tin mine, reports 6.6 kt. Additional unreported production is as by-product from other operations such as Greenbushes.