The New South Wales Government has awarded $2 million in subsidies for 20 drilling projects around the state, including three in the western region.
The grant comes from the New Frontiers Cooperative Drilling program, an initiative aimed to encourage mineral exploration across the state.
Under the program the government provides subsidies of 50 per cent of the cost of drilling projects, capped at $200,000.
Peel Mining has won $70,000 each for two drilling projects at prospects west of Condobolin and southwest of Nymagee.
It has also been given $55,000 for a prospect near Ivanhoe.
Peel Mining Managing Director, Robert Tyson, said the money will be used to search for another ore body.
“We’re always planning to drill at these targets,” he said.
“We are a true exploration company and we always drill no matter what sort of economic cycle’s underway and it’s a bit tough at the moment.
“It just basically means we’re going to be able to drill more metres than we would have already planned which is useful because you don’t always put your drill holes in the right spot so it really increases our chances of discovery.”
Division of Resources and Energy Executive Director of Geosciences, Brad Mullard, said the initiative shows the Government’s cooperation with the industry.
“The Government conducts some of its own drilling in frontier areas to improve our knowledge of the underlying geology,” he said.
“But by co-operating with industry on further drilling activities, we can cover more areas, more quickly and make more informed decisions about if, where and how we might use these deposits to benefit NSW.
“Finding more minerals is critical to the long term energy and economic future of NSW. Resource royalties help fund services such as hospitals, schools and roads.”
Mr Tyson said the funding demonstrates the government’s commitment to mineral exploration.
“We’ve recently had our costs of working in NSW increased in the past few years in the forms of additional rates for the government in respect to the ground we hold,” he said.
“So it’s nice to see some of that money coming back in the form of cooperative help in terms of drilling, so we’re very pleased.
“A recent survey pointed out that about 85 per cent of all NSW discoveries come from junior explorers like Peel Mining.”