Capstone Mining Corp. received final approvals from the U.S. Forest Service for a new mine plan of operations for the Pinto Valley mine in Arizona. The plan, approved by the Tonto National Forest (TNF), extends Pinto Valley’s life of mine to 2039. The mine life extension is expected to produce 2.5 billion lb of copper and will preserve approximately 700 jobs in Arizona’s Gila County, contributing to the area’s economic activities over the next two decades.

TNF’s approval process included a detailed evaluation of technical data provided by Pinto Valley Mining Corp. and a stakeholder consultation process. The plan allows for Pinto Valley’s continued operation and includes additional environmental controls, as well as monitoring and mitigation measures to address potential environmental impacts from the mine’s operations.

“I would like to congratulate our Pinto Valley team on this significant permitting achievement, which will translate into continued benefits for the community of Globe-Miami for decades to come,” President and CEO Darren Pylot said. “We recently completed a $31 million optimization project, which has increased productivity, decreased costs and built a more resilient operation.”

The approval took more than five years to obtain, according to Senior Vice President and COO Brad Mercer.