Brazilian mining company Vale (NYSE:VALE) has been granted a preliminary environmental license for its S11D mine, an extension of the company's giant Carajas complex, located in the Serra Sul Amazon region. The projects is poised to be the largest iron ore mine in the world.
Vale, the largest iron ore producer and exporter, said in a statement that it plans to spend $8 billion to develop the mine and to build a processing plant, as well as $11.4 billion to improve the mine’s railroad and local port to allow Vale to ship the steel-making ingredients to important markets such as China.
Preventing environmentalists’ criticism, Vale added it would transport iron ore from the mine to the processing plant via 37km of conveyer belts instead of by using trucks.
The Rio de Janeiro-based company added S11D would produce 90 million metric tonnes of iron ore and begin operations in 2016.