Americas Gold and Silver poured the first gold at its Relief Canyon open-pit, heap-leach gold project in northwest Nevada in mid-February. Relief Canyon is a previously producing property, and the current project benefits from an existing processing plant. Production is forecast at about 90,000 ounces per year (oz/y) of gold over an initial six-year mine life at all-in sustaining costs of about $800/oz.
Proven and probable reserves at Relief Canyon currently total 27.2 million metric tons (mt), grading 0.75 grams/mt gold and containing 653,000 oz of gold.
Americas Gold and Silver began actively mining ore at Relief Canyon in early December 2019. As of mid-February, the operation had approximately 200,000 mt of ore placed on the leach pad. The ore crushing and stacking circuit were performing as expected, and the ADR plant was fully functioning.
Mine operations were ongoing on a 24-hour-per-day basis, stacking ore at rates of approximately 14,500 mt/d. Approximately 150,000 mt of ore had been stockpiled ahead of the crusher and was waiting to be placed on the leach pad. Waste stripping was ahead of plan, with mining activities focused on the North and Lightbulb areas of
Construction at Relief Canyon was completed within its budget of $28 million to $30 million. The project is scheduled to reach commercial production before the end of the second quarter of 2020.
The Relief Canyon property has significant exploration potential, with only about 20% of the 11,700-ha land package explored to date.
The project is located is approximately 95 miles northeast of Reno. Electricity is available on the property, and water is available from two wells located east of the processing plant. The town of Lovelock is located approximately 19 miles by road west-southwest of the project.