Expansion of mining rights for potash

SCARBOROUGH’S potash project is expanding as the firm behind the scheme announces it has increased the area of its mineral rights.

Sirius Minerals now owns the rights to an additional 13 square kilometres between Scarborough and Whitby, taking the company’s total mineral rights portfolio to 621 sq km.

The land has already been subject to historical potash and gas exploration, the results of which Sirius will use as part of their own surveys.

Chris Fraser, managing director of Sirius, said: “This is part of our desire to put the most complete proposals forward. Our work towards the exploration phase and ultimately the details of project is ongoing.”

The company is in the final stages of putting applications together for test drilling in the area, which, along with geological and seismic studies, will eventually help determine where the mine head will be placed.

Plans for the mine were unveiled in January when 600 sq km of mining rights between Scarborough and Whitby were sold by York Potash to Sirius Minerals.

Sirius, which specialises in potash exploration and development, then announced proposals for the mine, which is estimated to created up to 5,000 jobs both directly and indirectly.

If the project goes ahead Sirius estimates agricultural potash, a powdery salt used in fertilisers, could be extracted from the new mine for the next 50 years.