Newcrest Mining has stamped a $246 million investment to extend the life of the Telfer gold operation in Western Australia as it continues to focus on exploring the site’s open pit and underground deposits.
According to Newcrest, the West Dome stage five cutback at Telfer will allow its open pit and underground operations to continue for at least the next two years.
Newcrest reported it has also received positive drilling results between Telfer’s stage two and stage five boundary.
“With additional drilling, we believe there is the potential for further mine life extensions in the open pit and the underground beyond this time,” Newcrest managing director and chief executive officer Sandeep Biswas said
Newcrest plans to start production stripping for the stage five cutback from September 2021 with first ore to be delivered in March 2022.
The company will not undertake further gold price hedging in relation to the cutback.
Newcrest expects to use the Telfer plant to process ore from the nearby Havieron copper-gold joint venture with Greatland Gold once that project is developed.
Under the Havieron joint venture agreement, Newcrest can earn a 70 per cent interest if it spends $US65 million ($88 million) and completes exploration and development milestones by 2025.
Newcrest has currently spent $US45 million and holds a 60 per cent interest in Haveiron.
“With the excellent progress we are making at the nearby Havieron project, our objective is to continue utilising the Telfer plant without interruption as we look to introduce Havieron and other new potential feed sources in the future,” Biswas said.
Telfer is the largest processing facility in the Paterson Province and produced 393,164 ounces of gold in the 2020-21 financial year.
Newcrest general manager Fraser MacCorquodale said the company was looking for additional exploration targets similar to Havieron in the Paterson Province.
“Over the past few years there have been some great exploration success stories coming out of Australia,” MacCorquodale said in a presentation at Diggers & Dealers 2021.
“The best example is the Havieron discovery by Greatland who were willing to drill holes up to a kilometre and the reward for both companies out of that has been fantastic.
“This is all about (finding if there) are there more Havierons floating around Havieron.”