14 June 2022
Update - January 30 2023:
On January 30, 2023 the Government of Canada announced an investment of $100 million through the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) to support BHP’s $7.5 billion project to develop its world-leading low-emissions potash mine. This mine, located in Jansen, Saskatchewan, is expected to generate the lowest direct emissions of any potash mine in the world. Through this project, BHP will significantly minimize the carbon footprint of the mine, improve worker safety and implement technology to further reduce emissions from mine operations.
BHP anticipates the mine to be operational by 2026, with an initial production capacity of 4.3 to 4.5 million tonnes of potash per year, increasing Canada’s production of this critical mineral by nearly 22% and making it one of the top producers in the world.
On Monday June 13, Canadian Federal Minister François-Philippe Champagne announced the Government of Canada’s intent to support and advance the development of BHP's Jansen potash mine with up to a C$100M investment. The Minister was joined by his colleague, Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau, BHP CEO Mike Henry, Rag Udd, President Minerals Americas, Caroline Cox, Chief Legal, Governance and External Affairs Officer, and Simon Thomas, President Potash, along with various partners, stakeholders, and suppliers at the event.
The investment is through the government’s Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF), which supports large-scale, transformative, and collaborative projects that will help position Canada to prosper in the global knowledge-based economy. BHP applied to the SIF because we are building a mine that is fundamentally different – the first of its kind in the underground mining sector in Canada. This support from the Canadian government is a belief by a key stakeholder that Jansen potash mine will be one of the most technically advanced in the world and the most sustainable.
After more than a year of work and engagement, BHP's successful application supports the implementation of state-of-the-art integrated mining systems at Jansen, in partnership with Sandvik, which have never been used in Canada or in potash mining. These new innovative systems allow us to:
- Produce at rates greater than 2.5 times conventional potash mining systems,
- Use 60% less equipment,
- Lead to improved safety of our workforce, and
- Reduce environmental impact.
Additionally, we are pursuing the purchase of underground battery electric vehicles, wherever commercially available, which lowers workforce exposure to diesel exhaust and support our objective of eliminating diesel use entirely within the Jansen Stage 1 underground operation.
The Jansen project brings economic growth to the region through jobs, partnerships with Canadian enterprises, and research and development. Jansen will also support the local community with 3,500 jobs at peak construction and around 600 ongoing jobs through mine operations. Our goal is for the operational workforce is have a gender balanced and 20% indigenous employment starting day 1 of operations, in 2026/27.
BHP President Minerals Americas Rag Udd said, “BHP is honoured and excited to partner with the government, Indigenous peoples and the people of Saskatchewan to create a mine that will use the latest technology to deliver a productive, efficient and sustainable operation that will have benefits for our employees and communities, and value for BHP and Canada for decades to come.”