It is difficult to portray how massive the industry is, but taxes, royalties & rates revenue to the WA govt for the financial yr 2110 was $800 million & $1.8 Billion to the federal govt. That's for BHP Billiton only.
My guess is that Rio Tinto paid similar figures.
The North West Gas Venture which contributes $5 Billion in State & Commonwealth taxes & royalties each yr.
It's mind boggling!!
It's no wonder why the cost of housing in the Pilbara is outrageous with a 3 bedroom fibro / wooden house with 1 bathroom, 1 carport, no pool in the yard costing in the vicinity of $700,000. A house with 4 bedrooms & 2 bathrooms would be over $1.2 million. It's all relevant to the resource industry incomes & the demand on housing.
Over 200 million tonnes of iron ore was exported in 2010. BHP Billiton is the primary exporter from 1 of 2 ports in Port Headland. The ore is mined from 7 mines mostly around Newman, over 400 kms from Port Headland. Newman's Mount Whaleback mine is the largest open cut ore mine in the world @ 5 km long & 1.5 kms wide. Fortescue Metals & other smaller companies also exports iron ore from Port Headland.
Most ship loads of iron ore weighs approx 200,000 tonnes @ a cost of $30 million.
Ship capacity sizes vary.
We went on a 2 hr tour of BHP Billiton s port facilities. Some of the equipment in the area is massive.
Salt is also exported from port Headland. Port Headland also has several hundreds of hectares of salt paddock between Port Headland & South Headland by Rio Tinto.
The salt is exported for industrial, manufacturing or used on the icy European roads.
Port Headland also had great sunsets :)
Because we're driving in the Pilbara region that is huge in mining iron ore, we encountered many over sized vehicles on the road.
Tom Price is right next Karijini National Park. Tom Price was built in the 1960's for the purpose of Iron Ore mining. Rio Tinto mines the ore at several mines from the Hamersley Range around Tom Price.
Mt Tom Price is a mountain that is now a hole in the ground.
We went on a tour of the RioTinto mine site near Tom Price.
We were hoping to see a live mine operation, but shown the site that is no longer used for now.
On the way out the entry gate, a 4WD has been crushed as a demo of how easy small vehicles can't be seen from inside the larger mine vehicles.
Mt Nameless is the highest mt in WA at a height of 1128 mtrs. It was the back drop to our van park. It also is 4WD access to the top for some great views.
At the top, the views over Tom Price were magnificent, though hazy. Panorama from left to right
From a little lower done the mt. That's an active mine site.
Views of the our on the way down again.
Beautiful things still grow on those mts. Fortunately Mt Nameless can't be mined :)
Karratha & Dampier are 200 kms further down the coast from Port Headland. These 2 towns are also run around industries of iron ore, salt & gas.
The North West Shelf Gas Facility is about 125 kms off the coast of Dampier with depths of 125 - 131 mtrs. The gas comes to the main land via large 1 mtr wide pipes for processing before it is loaded onto purpose built ships for exportation to Japan & China. A pipe also takes gas to Perth & Bunbury. Visiting the information centre was fascinating.
There were many more pics, facts & figures that could be given, but my head is glazed now & I guess yours is as well.
I hope you enjoyed the read & got some gist of how big the industry is in The Pilbara.
Also just how much revenue the WA & Commonwealth govts take from this area.