NORTHWEST TERRITORIES – The Mackenzie Valley Review Board (MVRB) has recommended approval of the NICO gold-cobalt-bismuth-copper mine belonging to Fortune Minerals of London, ON. The board concluded that a full environmental review is not necessary, and the project, located 160 km northwest of Yellowknife, should proceed to the regulatory phase for approvals, subject to certain measures set out in its report.
Fortune says the report and recommendations have been submitted to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada and to the Tlicho government. When both have signed off on the report, the NICO project can progress to the licensing and permitting phase of the process.
The NICO mine will operate at 4,650 t/d for at least 20 years on 33 million tonnes of proven and probable reserves (both in pit and underground). The reserves are estimated to contain 1.1 million oz of gold, 82 million lb of cobalt, 102 million lb of bismuth and 27 million lb of copper. The metals, contained in concentrate, will be shipped to a hydrometallurgical plant near Saskatoon where they will be refined.
An economic analysis of the NICO project and refinery is available at FortuneMinerals.com.