TSX-V- and NYSE American-listed Integra Resources has announced that it is advancing the heap-leach stage of its DeLamar project, in Idaho, into permitting and development on a standalone basis.
The company stresses that the low-cost, low-risk strategy to focus on the financial engine of the project – the heap leach – does not negate the strong optionality of the project in multiple areas.
“Integra’s 2022 DeLamar PFS [prefeasibility study] highlighted an abundance of optionality derived from a myriad of development scenarios to advance the asset,” says president and CEO George Salamis.
Based on data provided in the PFS, and despite the fact that the project was costed out during a period of high inflation, the heap-leach operation at DeLamar showed solid returns with an after-tax net present value, using a 5% discount, of $314-million and an after-tax internal rate of return of 33% at $1 700/oz gold and $21.50/oz silver.
The heap-leach operation will produce about one-million ounces of gold equivalent on its own.
During the eight-year heap-leach operation, the project averages 136 000 oz/y of gold equivalent with site-level all-in sustaining costs (AISC) of $814/oz.
The heap-leach standalone strategy will result in total project capital savings of more than $235-million and a decrease in site-level AISC of 15%, Salamis notes.
"The strategy also simplifies the future permitting, financing and construction plans since permitting and financing the heap leach as a standalone mine without the mill initially, is viewed as a lower-risk strategy. When fully developed, DeLamar has the potential to become one of the lowest cost and largest heap-leach mining operations in North America that is not currently owned by a major producer,” he says.