Kaunis Iron becomes main sponsor of the respected sports club Pajala IF.
“This agreement is incredibly important to Pajala IF’s activities, probably the biggest thing ever in an economic perspective,” says Magnus Pekkari, chairman of the sports club.
With the help of this economic boost, measures and activities will be carried out to further strengthen team spirit and cohesion in the club.
“It is also important that the cooperation is long-term – the agreement signed is for three years, allowing us to create the continuity needed in the club activities,” says Magnus Pekkari, Pajala IF.
This is the mining company’s first big venture into sponsoring. Kaunis Iron already sponsors among other things the ice road from Huuki and the cottage bakery in Kaunisvaara.
“To us it is essential to contribute to the community, especially for young people and parasports,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, CEO of Kaunis Iron.
Pajala IF today has four sections, for football, floorball, parasports and skiing. There is also orienteering, which sorts under the skiing section. Today, the club has about 250 active members, which does not include the many engaged parents.
We receive a number of questions about our ore transports between the mine in Kaunisvaara and Pitkäjärvi.
Here are some facts which you are welcome to share:
We have a dispensation issued by the Swedish Transport Administration to use 90-tonne ore rigs.
As regards the distance between ore rigs, we are required to keep a minimum of four (4) minutes distance between loaded ore rigs, which applies only to ore rigs on their way from Kaunisvaara to Pitkäjärvi. The background to this condition is that the road surface needs time to recover between individual ore rigs.
At the bridges across the Torne River and the Tärendö River, where traffic lights have been put up, our loaded ore rigs are supposed to keep to the “bridge centre”, that is, drive on the centre of the bridge, and it is not permitted pass other traffic on the bridges. The background to this is that the load on the bridges is to be distributed in the best way. This applies even if for some reason the traffic lights are out of action.
Otherwise, the same regulations apply to our ore rigs as to all other road users. However, we try always to keep a distance between ore rigs to make things as easy as possible for other road users, and to keep the production flow as even as possible.
See you on the road, drive carefully!
The government green tax shift has a disproportionate impact on northern Sweden, threatening both export industries and rural jobs. Let us not take a step backwards, but jointly formulate a way forwards.
These are the words of our chairman Anders Sundström and CEO Per-Erik Lindvall, among others, in a debate article in the national daily Dagens industry, which you can read below.
Last night we received information that a pickup had driven on the wrong side of the road and hit one of our trucks in a head-on collision north of Masugnsbyn. Our driver in the truck involved is physically unharmed, but suffering from severe shock, and is being taken care of by both the company’s personnel section and external care services.
A police investigation is ongoing, and for more information about the accident we refer you to the rescue services and the police.
Peter Bohm, CEO Malmtransport Norr, Per-Erik Lindvall, CEO Kaunis Iron, Helena Sjöholm, communicator at Kaunis Iron.
Train number 200!
Yesterday evening, on 8 January at 21.00 hours, we drove the 200th train of iron ore to Narvik. It transported 3,257 tonnes of ore, and the entire train including locomotive weighed 4,260 tonnes.
“Since we started driving on 13 August, we have transported 610,000 tonnes of ore on the railway,” says Thomas Nordmark of Kaunis Iron, site manager at the terminal in Pitkäjärvi.
Pajala for Musikhjälpen
“Everyone has a right to function differently – Musikhjälpen 2018” (Music Aid), which this year is broadcast from Lund. And Kaunis Iron is taking part by donating money to the community’s own collecting box, Pajala för Musikhjälpen.
“We have decided to contribute 1 krona per produced tonne of concentrate between 14 December at 6.00 and 15 December at 6.00,” says Åsa Allan, site manager, Kaunis Iron.
And if that were not enough, the biggest contractors with the Pajala mine, GISAB and Snells are contributing an equal sum, since they have taken up the challenge from Kaunis Iron.
“Now we hear that this is spreading among our other cooperative partners, and that SLP, building truck and trailer components in Övertorneå, is joining our initiative – that’s good to hear!” Åsa Allan concludes.
Together with Snells, GISAB, SLP, Wist Last & Buss AB and Elkoll we contributed almost 30,000 kronor to Pajala för Musikhjälpen, which in turn collected around 110,000 kronor. For Sweden as a whole, the total was a fantastic 50 m kronor.
Early this morning we received the tragic news that one of our workers had been killed in a single vehicle accident involving one of our trucks on road 395 at Peräjävaara. Our thoughts are naturally with the family, friends and colleagues.
As we write this, our priority is to support and contact relatives of the deceased and to take care of our personnel in the best way possible.
Consultation on the new environmental permit
Kaunis Iron AB intends to apply for a new permit under the Environmental Code for the company’s mining and ore processing operations in Pajala Municipality. The planned operations that the sustainability assessment encompasses include:
In view of the planned sustainability assessment, consultations will be held with the involved Sámi community, property owners, enterprises or similar that may be affected, as well as involved authorities and organisations. In the enclosed consultation documentation, there is a description of existing and planned operations, and the main environmental effects that it is predicted operations may give rise to.
A public consultation meeting will be held on Tuesday, 4 December between 18.00–21.00 in Folkets hus in Kaunisvaara (address Kaunisvaara 133). At the meeting, further information will be given about planned operations. The meeting is also an opportunity to ask questions or put forward views on the subject. Naturally, we offer refreshments. Views on the subject can be put forward either at the consultation meeting on 4 December or in writing, by 4 January 2019.
Twenty-five 90-tonners from Volvo ensure the ore flow round-the-clock, year round
There is more to Kaunis Iron than the newly re-started iron ore mine, the company is in fact taking a position as the biggest haulage company in Norrbotten. With the help of twenty-five Volvo FH16 750, the 90-tonners are rolling a distance equivalent to round the world 257 times every year.
From the open pit mine in Kaunisvaara, near Pajala in Norrbotten County, 2,000,000 tonnes of iron ore are transported by truck for reloading onto trains for further transport by ship from Narvik harbour in Norway. The comparison with 257 times round the world makes clear the challenge this presents. Every truck drives an average of over 360,000 km a year.
“This kind of challenge calls for high-performance trucks that are able to deliver every day, round-the-clock and year in, year out. The trucks from Volvo match all our expectations,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, CEO of Kaunis Iron.
Kaunis Iron’s fleet of trucks, operating in the sister company Malmtransport Norr, works in an extreme climate for most of the year. We can have warm summer days, and sub-zero temperatures down to 30°C occur in winter, which demands extra high performance demands of the powertrain, chassis and superstructure. The logistics must never break down and we attach great importance to an unbroken flow.
“We are responsible for the trucks’ functioning without production breakdowns, and Kaunis Iron pays for a quantity of effective transport mileage, which means that we have had to think innovatively around the business model,” says Mats Karlsson Karlson(jag tror han har dubbel S) Ek, CEO of Wist Last & Buss, the retailer for Volvo Lastvagnar in northern Sweden.
One circuit is 320 km and at the halfway point there is a workshop managed by Wist Last & Buss, which takes care of all the usual maintenance jobs. All the vehicles are delivered with a service agreement which gives security in that all service is carried out according to an agreed plan, which strengthens reliability and security in the delivery chain.
The fuel is a big item in transport costs, and it is among the duties of the traffic managers to also coach the drivers in economic driving with the help of Dynafleet.
“The vehicles are already shown good performance, even though we have not begun to tweak all the parameters. For example, we have not yet begun active coaching of the drivers in how to further reduce consumption,” says Peter Bohm, CEO of Malmtransport Norr.
Fact: Kaunis Iron started iron ore extraction in Kaunisvaara in summer 2018.
Number of FH16 750: 25 constantly ready for operation. ¨
Total number of vehicles: 28.
Maximum load: 63 tonnes per vehicle
Extraction and transportation days: 365 per year
Number of drivers: 125
Total transport volume: 2 m tonnes per year
Number of kilometres driven per year: 10,285,710
The logistics chain is complete. Now we are loading the first shipment of ore to the customer.
Today, Thursday morning, the ship Golden Ruby docked in Narvik harbour, where she is now being loaded with 72,000 tonnes of concentrate from the mine in Kaunisvaara. It is time for the first ship to deliver ore from Kaunis Iron to the customer.
“This is the company stepping into a new era. Alongside focused and determined work in a project that has come to production, we have now also started shipments and sales to the customer in practice, and the flow of concentrate is naturally designed to result in a constant cash flow – which is where we are now,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, CEO Kaunis Iron.
The journey has begun that the ore makes from the mine near Pajala via the harbour in Narvik on to the customers around the world. From rock to concentrate, via the crusher and the concentrator, with loading and truck transport up to the reloading centre in Pitkäjärvi for further transport by train to Narvik and the harbour, Kaunis Iron can now confirm that the chain is complete.
“The logistics chain from the mine to the harbour is complete and we now continue work round-the-clock to deliver our product, iron ore, in the best possible way,” says Andreas Lantto, Head of Logistics with Kaunis Iron.
In about four days, Golden Ruby will be fully loaded and will leave the jetty in Narvik for the five day journey to our customer Tata Steel in the Netherlands. And more shiploads are due. Within a few weeks the next shipload of ore from Kaunisvaara open pit mine will leave Narvik harbour.
Kaunis Iron is planning annual production corresponding to 2,000,000 tonnes of finished product shipped to customers.
No dust is spreading, says Kiruna Municipality.
The Environmental and Planning Board in Kiruna Municipality has carried out checks on Kaunis Iron’s ore trains from Pitkäjärvi to Narvik and the results are approved, in other words, satisfactory.
Up until now, Kaunis Iron has implemented four measures to stop dust spreading from the rail wagons: the body surfaces have been painted, we have invested in a facility that applies “paste” to the concentrate before departure, bottom drainage has been installed in the body and the mine has invested in a mechanical solution that enables vibrating the wagons when unloading in Narvik.
These measures are now proving successful.
“In addition we are filming every trip ore trains make and we have at least 400 hours of film that we have analysed without detecting dust from the wagons,” says Andreas Lantto, Head of Logistics with Kaunis Iron AB.
Just like Kaunis Iron, Kiruna Municipality has made film recordings of the ore train in motion. At the board meeting on 13 September, film footage was an item on the agenda, and it was then decided to archive the information with approval.
“Even though it did not come as a surprise that it would be approved, it is of course pleasing that we have it rubberstamped – our work for the best possible environment along the railway is making a difference,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, CEO of Kaunis Iron.
Kaunis Iron continues to film its ore transportation by train to constantly ensure that it will remain as dust free as possible en route to Narvik.
Meet us at Load Up North!
Come and meet us at Load Up North in Boden between Thursday 30 August and Saturday 1 September. Come and talk to us about jobs, and take the opportunity to check out one of our rigs. They are truly impressive.
On Tuesday the bell will ring, not for the first, but the second ore train!
There was no departure to wave off, and no ringing bell when we last planned this, because of the big fire in the snow gallery. However we did drive an ore train from Pitkäjärvi to Narvik the other day, and everything went well. But it was without anybody standing waving it off and without a bell ringing. Not bad anyway, you might think, but we think it feels important to mark the start of the train operations too, because Kaunis Iron is slowly but surely advancing from project to production with hundreds of employees. Specially invited guests, and colleagues and representatives from Kaunis Iron, Railcare and our subcontractors are in attendance. Welcome!
Place: Kaunis Iron’s reloading terminal in Pitkäjärvi outside Svappavaara
Date: Tuesday, 21 August
Time: We assemble at 8.00
In connection with the departure of the ore train at 9.15, Andreas Lantto, Head of Logistics with Kaunis Iron, and Ulf Markström, deputy CEO of Railcare, will ring the bell specially made for the occasion. After departure there will be an opportunity to interview the representatives of the different companies on the spot.
The opening salvo has been fired and it is time for the first truck to make its journey from Kaunisvaara to the railway in Pitkäjärvi.
If you want to follow the first trucks on their maiden trip on 30 July you can see them passing the different villages mentioned below. Welcome, let’s go!
MONDAY 30 JULY
08:35 KAUNISVAARA MINE 08:40 KAUNISVAARA VILLAGE
08:55 AUTIO BRIDGE
09:04 PAJALA AIRPORT
10:00 DEPARTURE FROM JUNOSUANDO
11:15 JUNCTION E10-E45 (SVAPPAVAARA)
11:20 ARRIVAL PITKÄJÄRVI
Note that the above times are approximate.
New jobs to Pajala when Kaunis Iron opens the mine
Thanks to strong demand, a competitive product and a more favourable world market price, the figures are good for Kaunis Iron in Pajala. Now the mine is restarting, with new owners and strong local commitment.
“The earlier bankruptcy is of course a big contributor to the positive equation. To be free from debt at start-up creates good conditions to run operations profitably,” says Anders Sundström, chairman of the new company.
Mining operations in Pajala are continuing. After a long process with many challenges, a new start-up is being projected. In a so-called “private placement” together with Carnegie Bank and entrepreneurs, the necessary capital has been raised. The basis for the decision is the conviction that operations will be profitable, which investors and stakeholders agree with.
“We have seen strong optimism among investors. The response has been fantastic. In a short while we have raised 500 m kronor in Kaunis Iron. This gives us solid foundation to build on. Even though we know exactly what product we have, and how much of it we can produce, we cannot control iron ore prices on the world market. That is the only uncertainty factor in all this. But we are very optimistic,” says Anders Sundström.
Production start in summer 2018
The target is annual production corresponding to 2,000,000 tonnes of the finished product. That is roughly half the target of the previous operator. “Although we already have a functioning production and logistics chain in place, it is about realistic goals. We want to feel secure in being able to run operations profitably at an early stage. It must be done in a balanced way. Then we have environmental aspects to safeguard. We will work proactively with that aspect too,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, board member, Kaunis Iron.
Part of the community
Views have been expressed on the environmental impact of the operations. This concerns among other things the impact on the water table on the mire where the deposits are. “Yes, mining operations impact the environment – that is true of course. That must always be taken into consideration in an overall assessment, but there are also strong reasons why it is worthwhile. Jobs and a living rural area carry a great deal of weight on the other side of the equation. Today it is a must and a self-evident process to look at all aspects of sustainability, socially, economically and environmentally. Although we must respect each other’s roles, we want to be an active part of Pajala’s future,” says Åsa Allan, site manager of Kaunis Iron.
Recruitment a priority area
Per-Erik Lindvall, who is one of the driving forces behind the project, has a solid background in the mining industry, having spent 10 years with Boliden and 26 years with LKAB in different managerial positions. Per-Erik is a well-known profile in the industry. Together with site manager Åsa Allan, it is he who is to build the team for operating the mine in Kaunisvaara. Åsa is a qualified geologist, and in 2007 achieved a PhD in ore geology at Luleå University of Technology. After a period as a consultant, in 2012 she was recruited as senior geologist at the Pajala mine. Having built up the geology division, she finally became mine planning manager before the mine closed down. Before Kaunis Iron came knocking, she also had time to work for two years as Municipal Chief Executive in Pajala.
“All this is quite simply fantastic. I know what this means to Pajala, and I know there is massive support for the mine in the region. I know also that together we will succeed in what we undertake. Our focus right now is on recruitment – by our reckoning we will need over 300 people in operations. We know there is strong interest, and we are already hearing a lot of positive reactions from people in Norrbotten. We will meet a lot of the needs through partnership with important suppliers, and some will be employed in the company,” says Åsa Allan, site manager, Kaunis Iron.
The product is the main factor
Ultimately, it all boils down to the unique product that has already shown itself to be in big demand from the world steelworks. “We know that our product, with extremely favourable environmental advantages, has its clear place on the market. It is no secret that countries like China have major environmental challenges, at the same time as they are very much in need of steel. This has meant that they put a premium on raw materials with a higher iron content. This gives our product from Kaunisvaara an edge,” says Per-Erik Lindvall, board member, Kaunis Iron.