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Pumpkin Hollow copper project, US – update

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28th October 2022

By: Sheila Barradas

Creamer Media Research Coordinator & Senior Deputy Editor

     

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Name of the Project
Pumpkin Hollow copper project.

Location
Near Yerington, Nevada, in the US.

Project Owner/s
Nevada Copper.

Project Description
A technical report has described the Pumpkin Hollow property and its advancement, based on a phased development approach of the underground and openpit deposits, as standalone projects.

The prefeasibility study (PFS) proposes the development of the openpit project independently from the underground mine currently under construction.

The openpit study envisages a phased operation with an initial mining rate of 37 000 t/d (years 1 to 6) and expanding to 70 000 t/d (years 7 to 9). Peak production is forecast at 111 000 t/y or 244-million pounds a year.

The proposed openpit project plan includes additional drilling in areas that have mineralisation open within the pit boundary, which are currently inferred resources, as well as areas where the boundary of mineralisation remains open. The openpit has been designed to be a conventional truck-and-shovel operation, with a combination of hydraulic and electric cable shovels and haul trucks.

The openpit has a mine life of 19 years.

Processing will be undertaken through a conventional flotation concentration plant and will comprise crushing and grinding circuits, followed by a flotation process to recover and upgrade copper, gold and silver from the feed material.

The 5 000 t/d underground project will produce about 60-million pounds of copper in the first five years of operations, as well as 9 000 oz of gold and 173 000 oz of silver.

Over the underground project’s 13.5-year mine life, it will average 50-million pounds of copper a year, 8 000 oz/y of gold and 15 000 oz/y of silver.

Potential Job Creation
Not stated.

Net Present Value/Internal Rate of Return
The openpit operation has an estimated pretax net present value (NPV), at a 7.5% discount rate, of $1.04-billion and an internal rate of return (IRR) of 23%, with a payback of 4.5 years. Together, the underground and openpit operations have a pretax NPV, at a 7.5% discount rate, of $1.32-million and an IRR of 24%.

Capital Expenditure
Initial capital expenditure for the openpit is estimated at $627-million.

Planned Start/End Date
The timing of the openpit construction and operations remains flexible.

Latest Developments
Nevada Copper announced a new restart plan for the Pumpkin Hollow underground copper mine in August 2022, having agreed to nonbinding terms with key financing partners for up to $93-million.

The restart plan should derisk the path to full-scale production by focusing on debottlenecking and completion of critical capital projects, in addition to the build-up of significant stope ore inventory, the company has stated.

CEO Randy Buffington has said that the current pause of production enabled Nevada Copper to make changes to tackle challenges that were impeding the final stages of the underground mine ramp-up.

Nevada Copper is also continuing to advance the openpit project at Pumpkin Hollow through the ongoing prefeasibility study update process.

Key Contracts, Suppliers and Consultants
Golder Associates, Sedgman and Tetra Tech Inc (openpit PFS and technical report); and Redpath USA (mining contractor).

Contact Details for Project Information
Nevada Copper Corp, email info@nevadacopper.com.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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