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US & Canada
Vale Commits to Underground Mine at Voisey’s Bay
The government of Newfoundland and Labrador and Vale have agreed to amendments to Vale’s Voisey’s Bay development agreement, the centerpiece of the amendments being a commitment by Vale to develop an underground mine at Voisey’s Bay. Vale currently operates an open-pit nickel-copper-cobalt mine and concentrator at Voisey’s Bay near Labrador’s east coast about 1,200 km north-northwest of St. John’s, the provincial capital.
Dominion Diamond Acquires BHP Billiton’s Ekati Interest
Dominion Diamond Corp. (formerly Harry Winston, Inc.) has completed its acquisition of the interests of BHP Billiton Canada Inc. and its various affiliates in the Ekati diamond mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories, as well as the associated diamond sorting and sales facilities in Yellowknife, Canada, and Antwerp, Belgium. The Ekati diamond mine consists of the Core Zone, which includes the current operating mine and other permitted kimberlite pipes, as well as the Buffer Zone, an adjacent area hosting kimberlite pipes having both development and exploration potential.
U.S. Mine Fatalities at All-time Low in 2012
The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) reported in early April 2013 that preliminary data indicate that the mine fatality rate in 2012 was the lowest in the history of U.S. mining, with 0.0107 deaths per 200,000 hours worked. The rate of reported injuries was 2.56 per 200,000 hours worked, also the lowest rate on record.
Veris Enters into Two Toll Milling Agreements
Veris Gold has entered into toll milling agreements with Atna Resources and Klondex Mines to process ores from their nearby operations at Veris’s Jerritt Canyon mill in Elko county, Nevada. The agreements are structured such that Atna and Klondex will pay toll milling fees for the processing of their ores, and all doré produced from the ores will remain the property of the mining companies.
Allied Nevada Updates its Hycroft Mine Plan
Allied Nevada has announced an updated mine plan and economics for its Hycroft open-pit mine expansion project located near Winnemucca, Nevada. The revised mine plan supports a 19-year operating life and exploits current proven and probable mineral reserves of 11.9 million oz of gold and 509.6 million oz of silver in 1.1 billion mt grading 0.011 oz/mt gold and 0.46 oz/mt silver.
Labrador Iron Mines, Tata Steel Agree to Cooperate
Labrador Iron Mines and Tata Steel Minerals Canada, a subsidiary of Tata Steel Ltd., have agreed to cooperate on various aspects of their respective iron ore operations in the Labrador Trough in Canada. The companies operate adjacent direct shipping ore mines near Menehik, Labrador, and Schefferville, Quebec, and both utilize and intend to utilize the same rail and port infrastructure.
North American Palladium Investing in 2013 Expansion
North American Palladium has budgeted C$79 million for capital investment in 2013 toward completion of Phase I of the ongoing expansion at its underground Lac des Iles mine in northern Ontario. The expansion is based on the upper third of reserves in the mine’s Offset Zone, which is currently being accessed via ramp from the older, shallower Roby Zone.
Financing Question Confronts Mt. Hope
General Moly reported on March 20 that its legal counsel had suspended until further notice work on the $665-million term loan that was being negotiated with China Development Bank (CDB) for the development of the Mt. Hope molybdenum project in Eureka County, Nevada. The suspension related to media reports that Liu Han, chairman of Sichuan Hanlong Group, had been detained by Chinese authorities. Hanlong owns a 13% interest in General Moly, and Hanlong or an affiliate is obligated to arrange and guarantee the term loan throughout its life.
Cliffs Idling Wabush Pointe Noire Pellet Plant
Cliffs Natural Resources announced on March 11, that it expects to idle its Wabush Pointe Noire pellet plant within the city of Sept-Îles, Quebec, by the end of the second quarter of 2013. The company said the decision was due to high production costs and lower pellet premium pricing, which it expects to persist in certain markets this year.
IIBG Studying Possible North American Plants
International Iron Beneficiation Group Ltd. (IIBG), an affiliate of Russia-based OAO Severstal, one of the world’s leading vertically integrated steel and steel-related-mining companies, has launched a preliminary feasibility study to consider the viability of building a granulated iron facility in Sydney, Nova Scotia. Other locations under active consideration in North America include Sept-Îles, Quebec, and sites in Minnesota, Kentucky and Indiana in the United States.
Avanti Receives Kitsault Environmental Approval
Avanti Mining has been issued an Environmental Assessment Certificate (EAC) for its Kitsault molybdenum mine by the British Columbia Minister of Environment and Minister of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas.
- Hecla Resumes Lucky Friday Mine Operations
- Seabridge Initiates Filing of KSM Environmental Documents
- Feasibility Study Advances Sisson Tungsten-Moly Project
- Detour Gold Pours First Gold Bars at Detour Lake
- Updated Rosemont Feasibility Study
- Construction 75% Complete at Detour Lake Gold
- Paramount Reports Results for Sleeper PEA
- Seabridge Completes PFS for Courageous Lake
- Canadian Zinc Reports Prairie Creek PFS, Plans Acquisition of Paragon Minerals
- Stillwater Submits Marathon EIS