Freeport-McMoRan’s PT Freeport Indonesia Grasberg copper-gold operations have been halted due to significant rainfall and landslides in the area of its milling operations in Papua.
The company said “intense rains” on 11 February resulted in flooding and a flow of debris that damaged the infrastructure near its mill complex. No injuries were reported, and the miner confirmed all of its personnel were safely evacuated from the site.
Freeport Indonesia is currently doing a damage assessment at Grasberg and preparing a recovery plan to resume operations. Its preliminary estimate is for resumption of operations by the end of this month.
Freeport also noted there “is no impact” to the long-term plans of Freeport Indonesia, but that there will likely be a near-term impact.
“[Freeport Indonesia]’s daily production approximates nearly 5 million pounds of copper and 5,000 ounces of gold. As a result of the disruption, [Freeport-McMoRan] expects its first-quarter 2023 sales to be lower than the guidance provided on January 25, 2023, of 900 million pounds of copper and 300 thousand ounces of gold,” the company said.
The Grasberg minerals district in Indonesia is one of the world’s largest copper and gold deposits.