By David Winning

SYDNEY--Rio Tinto is to take over the rehabilitation of the closed Ranger uranium mine in Australia's Northern Territory from Energy Resources of Australia, which has struggled with spiralling costs.

Rio Tinto, which owns some 86.3% of Energy Resources of Australia's stock, said it will take about three months before it is fully managing the rehabilitation of the mine, which is on land owned by the Mirarr indigenous people and surrounded by the world-heritage-listed Kakadu National Park.

The Ranger mine was shuttered more than a decade ago, and Energy Resources of Australia subsequently shelved plans to dig a new pit that could access uranium ore at greater depths.

In September last year, Energy Resources of Australia said it expected total costs for the rehabilitation of Ranger to materially exceed its prior estimate of up to 2.2 billion Australian dollars (US$1.43 billion). It said last month that it would likely need to raise additional funds to pay for the rehabilitation.

On Wednesday, Rio Tinto's Australia head Kellie Parker said taking over management of Ranger meant the global mining company could "directly provide more closure and project delivery experience and know-how to this critical task."

Write to David Winning at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

04-02-24 1939ET