Barrick Gold Corporation and NOVAGOLD Resources were issued a single Federal Record of Decision (ROD) for the Donlin Gold by the US Army Corps of Engineers and the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Along with the ROD, the Corps issued a combined permit under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act. Additionally, the BLM issued the Offer to Lease for the right-of-way for those portions of the natural gas pipeline that would cross federal lands.
“The issuance of the Donlin Gold ROD and key project permits is a significant milestone for both partners,” said Rob Krcmarov, Executive Vice President, Exploration and Growth for Barrick. “As one of the largest undeveloped gold deposits in the world, Donlin Gold represents exceptional optionality within our portfolio. Now, with key permits in hand, we can concentrate on further exploring ways of reducing initial capital and unlocking the value of this asset for all of our partners, in keeping with our deep commitment to community engagement and environmental stewardship.”
“The permitting process for the Donlin Gold project was very comprehensive and thorough,” said Greg Lang, NOVAGOLD’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “The ROD is a very detailed document, which serves as the foundation for issuance of the federal permits required for us to build a technically, environmentally, and financially responsible, as well as a socially sustainable, operation.”
As one of the world’s largest and highest grade undeveloped open pit gold resources, Donlin Gold is well positioned to benefit from rising gold prices. Receipt of the ROD and federal permits represents a very important milestone in its development. Now, Barrick and NOVAGOLD plan on wrapping up the optimisation studies and value enhancing options designed to reduce initial capital outlays and improve project economics. Donlin Gold anticipates providing further details in the fourth quarter on the path forward to update the 2011 feasibility study.
Donlin Gold is located in Alaska, the second largest gold-producing state in the US. With approximately 39 million ounces of gold grading 2.24 grams per tonne in the measured and indicated resource categories (100 percent basis), it hosts one of the largest and highest-grade undeveloped open pit gold endowments in the world. According to the Second Updated Feasibility Study, once in production, Donlin Gold is anticipated to produce, on average, more than one million ounces per year over a 27-year mine life.