In today’s post, Amira Global CEO Dr Jacqui Coombes discusses why LATAM is an important focus area for the organisation.

“Opportunity is knocking in South America.

Over recent months, Amira has been building a global network of allied organisations to help deliver new data, information, technology and innovation to our Members.

In South America, this includes a Memorandum of Understanding with the Innovation Hub of Peru, which offers a new avenue for connection within the country’s mining ecosystem.

We will also be announcing new agreements with two Chilean organisations in the coming days.

Our Head of Global Alliances and Manager LATAM, Patricio Pastorelli, is based in Santiago and can help Members connect with contacts in the region.

For Members, the Global Alliance can:


Amira’s role in the international mining community is to deliver transformational research and development, and innovation that will benefit our Members.

To this, we are addressing the challenges faced by industry: tailings management, water and energy use, and decarbonisation.

Tailings management is considered a mega challenge; that is, a problem that cannot be solved by one individual or organisation. It requires a holistic, concentrated, and global approach.

The cost of tailings is high, both to industry and society.

Globally, the mining industry is estimated to produce over 11.6 billion tonnes of tailings per year with 90 percent of this volume being permanently stored in tailings dams.

The lifetime cost to build, operate, maintain and close a tailings dam is estimated at over $680 million USD.

Moreover, catastrophic failure of dams is occurring at a rate of 2.2 failures per year, sadly resulting in loss of life and environmental damage, and the cost to society is estimated at up to $2.9bn USD per failure event.

One of the largest concentrations of tailings is in the Americas.

For our Members, research and innovation into tailings management is of critical importance.

It’s not only tailings!

Our focus in South America is not solely on tailings management.

The South American Exploration Initiative (SAXI) is an exciting project that is preparing to go into its second phase.

SAXI is investigating the exploration potential of the Guiana Shield and neighbouring terranes, which span Brazil, French Guiana, Suriname, Guyana and Venezuela, extending down to the Borborema Province.

SAXI research lead Professor Mark Jessell from the University of Western Australia recently presented the highlights of the first year of SAXI’s operations. A recording of the information session is available by contacting

Decarbonisation and the demand for copper to fuel the Green Revolution will necessitate research and innovation, especially in the copper-rich South America.

An article in Stockhead outlines the potential of the region, not just for Australia (as mentioned in the article), but for all our Members.

Take the opportunity!

The Amira Global Alliance will continue to expand in South America is coming weeks.

I encourage you to connect with Patricio Pastorelli to discuss how you can benefit from the work being undertaken in the region. His email is

There is a vast amount of opportunity available now and we are committed to providing pathways that will be help you, our Members, continue to grow.”

Dr Jacqui Coombes
CEO Amira Global