THE Hillside mine expansion near Ardrossan may be just the start of developments on Yorke Peninsula with Rex Minerals "aggressively" looking at up to 50 more sites.
A video has surfaced online of managing director and chief executive officer Mark Parry telling an overseas audience that there were other prospective targets within the company's existing exploration licence, which covers about 17,000 hectares of land on upper and central YP.
"We will start to look at those aggressively, as we get through funding and start to build the plant," he said on the tape.
"They don't all have to turn up another Hillside, but if we can find something that simply funds its own cutback, that funds a road into Hillside, we can increase the life of Hillside, we can potentially bring in higher grade and/or reduce the costs."
YP Landowners Group chairman Tom Saint posted an online extract of the speech on the group's website and Facebook page. He says RM is using the concept as marketing material to generate income and investors.
The region is home to some of SA's most reliable and productive agricultural land, but the CEO's statement suggested (despite this) that big plans were on the horizon.
"The proposed mine at Hillside will probably affect about 10 farmers directly, but then it's the whole of YP as well because they're talking about another 50 sites where they might dig holes and then put roads leading back to Hillside to crush it," Mr Saint said.
"I don't think people understand the scale of what might be happening."
RM has proposed a massive pit to extract 2 million tonnes of copper, 1.7m ounces of gold and 44m tonnes of iron ore during the 15-year lifespan of Hillside.
It would be processed onsite before being shipped from the Ardrossan port.
RM exploration and external relations manager Marc Twining said the company had 50 targets on YP, but only some of those could be expected to develop beyond the early stages of exploration and would be "progressively tested in coming years".
YPLG organised a public meeting at the Ardrossan Town Hall on Sunday last week where about 450 business people, farmers, members of the local community and shack owners joined Family First MLC Robert Brokenshire, Greens MLC Mark Parnell and Liberal MP and meeting chair Steven Griffiths.
* Full report in Stock Journal's October 31 edition.