“It’s a testament to the people on the ground at Anaconda at the Point Rousse Project and the infrastructure they’ve built and how attractive it became such that another company wanted to combine with us,” says Anaconda CEO Dustin Angelo.
“They wanted what we had just as much as we wanted they have.”
What they have at the Goldboro project, located roughly 180 kilometres from Halifax, is a rich vein that could see Anaconda increase its baseload production from 16,000 ounces of gold per year to 58,000.
That’s due largely to the higher grade of product.
At the active Pine Cove Pit, for example, the company is averaging one and a half to two grams of gold per tonne. Goldboro, meanwhile, is expected to produce four to five and a half grams.
“The criteria for us that was attractive was the large amount of resource and the grade, especially relative to what we had,” says Angelo, who calls it the “centerpiece” for Anaconda.
“Overnight, we’re buying over 800,000 ounces. On a combined basis, we’re going to have about 1,000,000 ounces of gold in the portfolio.”
Another of Goldboro’s attractive aspects was it’s proximity to water; the site is less than kilometres away from Isaac’s Harbour, which gives Anaconda more opportunity to make use of it’s deepwater port at Point Rousse.
“We have plenty of space from a depth standpoint, we’re working on determining the depth at Isaac’s Harbour and that’ll come over the next couple of months, what kind of vessel can we actually bring in there.”
As for how the incoming ore will affect the existing tailings capacity, Angelo says if permits come through to use the Pine Cove Pit as a tailings facility once the resource is depleted, there will be 15 years of capacity.
“That asset we’ll have, that can last for a long time, is huge, especially as the landscape and the environment for permitting across Canada is getting a little more difficult, there’s a lot more scrutiny, so if you can do it this way it’s a lot more effective and cost efficient.”
Angelo says Goldboro may extend operations at its Baie Verte facilities “modestly” but the Argyle prospect here, still in its infancy, could have a major impact on the baseload production.
“The grades would be a little bit better, we expect, than what we’re getting out of the pine cove pit.”