Rio Tinto reported that the Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) told the Australian Securities Exchange it has decided it will not proceed with the final feasibility study of the Ranger 3 Deeps project in the current operating environment. Rio Tinto agrees with the decision not to progress the study.

After careful consideration, Rio Tinto has determined that it does not support any further study or the future development of Ranger 3 Deeps due to the project’s economic challenges.

Rio Tinto also said it recognizes the importance of ongoing rehabilitation work at the Ranger mine site, which is surrounded by the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park. Rio Tinto is engaged with ERA on a conditional credit facility to assist ERA to fund its rehabilitation program, should additional funding be required beyond ERA’s existing cash reserves and the future earnings from processing ore stockpiles.

Rio Tinto is assessing a potential non-cash impairment charge of approximately $300 million (post tax) relating to its shareholding in ERA.