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Jacobs wins EPC contract for Sirius Minerals’ material handling facility

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Dry Bulk,

Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (Jacobs) has received an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract from Sirius Minerals PLC for its new materials handling facility (MHF) in Teesside, England. The MHF is being constructed as part of the company's North Yorkshire polyhalite project, which will supply a unique type of potash fertilizer.

Fertilizers play an important role in the agriculture industry and in food supply, providing the nutrients required for healthy plant growth. Polyhalite is a unique multi-nutrient mineral containing four of the six macro-nutrients that plants need: potassium, sulfur, magnesium and calcium. The MHF will crush the polyhalite ore from the mine near Whitby (England), and granulate it for use in agricultural equipment before sending it to the nearby dock for shipping.

"As the EPC provider for Sirius Minerals' materials handling facility, Jacobs is delivering more than a full life cycle solution on this project – we're delivering a facility that is scalable and able to support changing agriculture needs," said Jacobs Mining, Minerals and Technology Senior Vice President and General Manager Andrew Berryman.

"From the run-of-mine stockpile to the final product loadout, the materials handling facility will contribute to local and global food supply."

Jacobs is designing the MHF to handle 7 million tpy of granulated product in its first phase of development, with expansion considerations being developed into the design to support up to 20 million tpy of the granulated product. In addition, the facility will also handle 3 million tpy of coarse product. 

"Securing a partnership with a company the calibre of Jacobs is great for us and a testament to the world-class nature of this project," said Sirius Minerals Chief Development Officer Simon Carter.

"Their knowledge of EPC projects in the mining sector is hugely valuable, as is their experience of construction projects on Teesside."

Through the development of its North Yorkshire polyhalite project, the world's largest and highest-grade deposit, Sirius Minerals will become a leading global producer of polyhalite. At full production, the project will create over 1000 direct jobs and many more indirectly, and has the potential to generate over £2 billion of annual exports for the UK.

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