ALASKA — Originally set at US$59.9 million, the 2009 budget for the Pebble copper-gold-molybdenum project 380 km southwest of Anchorage is getting a US$10.1-million boost to a total of US$70 million this year. The additional funds will be spent to further characterize the deposit and to complete a prefeasibility study. Environmental studies are also underway.
The Pebble project is an equal joint venture belonging to Northern Dynasty Minerals of Vancouver and Anglo American of London, U.K. By the end of this year, the partners will have spent some US$430 million at Pebble.
The Pebble deposit may well be the largest undeveloped porphyry system in the world. Estimates made at the End of December 2008 included 5.1 billion tonnes of measured and indicated resources grading 0.77% CuEq and 4.0 billion tonnes of inferred resources grading 0.55% CuEq. All told there may be 76.0 billion lb of copper, 94.0 million oz of gold and 4.8 billion lb of molybdenum in the deposit.
Interested readers should visit www.PebblePartnership.com for details. One interesting detail is the real-time meteorological information available from the site.