The figure below illustrates the available infrastructure at Viscaria including the traverse of the high-voltage power-line with existing hydropower supply capacity through the project site, the updated location of the electrified rail-line, and the proximity to the township of Kiruna. The location (and potential availability) of the former Outokumpu tailings storage facility and former plant site are also indicated.
Preliminary discussions have been held with both the Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket) and the Swedish power generator / distributor Vattenfall, as to the provision of rail services and power purchase agreements respectively for future project requirements.
Trafikverket is a government agency in Sweden. It is responsible for long-term infrastructure planning for road, rail, shipping and aviation. It owns, constructs, operates and maintains all state-owned roads and railways. The agency has indicated that while both national lines out of Kiruna (to either Narvik in Norway or Lulea in Sweden) are under heavy load, there would be capacity for the small volumes required for copper concentrate transportation. Additionally, Trafikverket are also responsible for the design and construction of the new E10 by-pass road and new 870 road alignment to the public rail terminal. Both these projects are also required as part of the caving subsidence zone works required for the continued operations at LKAB Kiruna. The projects have commenced work and are due for completion in 2017.
The new roads will allow Avalon to have direct access to the public rail terminal without having to truck through the centre of the town. This would indicate that Viscaria may not require a dedicated spur-line for potential rail transportation, and could potentially utilise the public facility.
Vattenfall is a Swedish power company, wholly owned by the Swedish government. The electric utility is split into two major divisions of generation and distribution. The company has stated that the generation of power for Norbotten County is sourced from the hydropower schemes on the border of Norway. This infrastructure has been established and expanded for more than a century, with substantial supply capacity for future demand growth. The distribution network is well resourced with high levels of availability in the global context. Indicative power prices for both supply and transmission charges are less than $0.08 per kilowatt hour.