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'One Of The Largest' Off-Grid Solar Plants To Power B2Gold Mine

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(Kitco News) - B2Gold's board approved "one of the largest" off-grid hybrid solar/heavy fuel oil power plants to power its mine in Mali.

The company made the announcement yesterday in its second-quarter results.

B2Gold reported record quarterly consolidated gold production of 246,020 ounces. Consolidated gold revenues from continuing operations was $267 million on sales of 203,700 ounces.

B2Gold (NASDAQ:BTG) was up 10% today to $3.84 a share.

B2Gold's solar plant will have 30 megawatts of solar generating capacity with a significant battery storage component. The company estimates the plant will reduce processing costs by 7%.

"The Fekola Solar Plant will be one of the largest off-grid hybrid solar/heavy fuel oil (HFO) plants in the world," said B2Gold in a news release.

"It is expected that it will allow for three HFO generators to be shut down during daylight hours which will save about 13.1 million litres of HFO per year, at a capital cost of approximately $38 million."

The Fekola Solar Plant is scheduled for completion in August 2020 and has a four-year payback. 

B2Gold is doing more solar work. The company is relocating a village. The new Fadougou village will comprise of 700 new structures. All the homes will have solar panel lighting and latrines.

For full-year 2019, the Fekola Mine production is expected to be at the high end of its guidance range of between 420,000 and 430,000 ounces of gold at cash operating costs of between $370 and $410 per ounce sold and AISC of between $625 and $665 per ounce sold.

The Fekola Mine is currently being expanded.

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