30.2Mt at 1.81% copper, 0.4g/t gold and 2.7g/t silver for 811,000 tonnes CuEq
The Green Bay copper-gold project is located in the Baie Verte district of north-east Newfoundland, Canada. The province of Newfoundland and Labrador has been recognised as a top four global mining investment jurisdiction in the 2022 Fraser Institute Annual Survey of Mining Companies.
The project consists of multiple assets headlined by the Ming underground mine.
Ming Underground Mine
The Ming deposit is a high-grade copper-gold Volcanogenic Massive Sulphide (VMS) deposit located ~9km east of the township of Baie Verte.
The deposit comprises an upper zone of multiple tabular copper-gold rich massive sulphide horizons underlain by an extensive broad copper stockwork zone, known as the Lower Footwall Zone (LFWZ). In places, the LFWZ exceeds 100m in width and vertical extent.
The Ming deposit was originally mined between 1972 and 1982, before mining resumed in 2012. Historical production totalled 6.7Mt at 2.0% for 134,000t of copper.
The current resource at Ming is 30.2Mt at 1.81% copper, 0.4g/t gold and 2.7g/t silver for 811,000 tonnes CuEq.
The mine consists of an operating decline accessible to 950m below surface, and an existing 650m-deep shaft. This functional infrastructure provides a significant platform for AuTECO to rapidly increase the resource for minimal capital outlay.
The Company has a clear strategy to:
- Rapidly grow the resource at Ming through investment in drilling; and
- Demonstrate the size and scale of a globally significant high-grade copper-gold asset.
AuTECO sees opportunity to create shareholder value by rapidly expanding the already impressive resource at the Ming underground mine through investment in drilling. The existing underground infrastructure will fast-track work with drill positions immediately accessible.
Key targets for immediate resource growth include, but are not limited to:
- VMS Extensions: Down plunge drilling demonstrates the continuity of the high-grade VMS with intersections including 22.1m @ 4,5% Cu, 15.0m @ 5.3% Cu and 28.0m @ 3.3% Cu (all approximately true width).
- Lower Footwall Lower Extensions: In 2017 a surface hole was completed to test continuity of the LFWZ at depth. This returned an intersection of 102m @ 1.7% Cu 460m down plunge of the existing resource.
- Upper extent of the Lower Footwall Zone: No drilling has intersected the projected up-plunge extension of the LFWZ to surface. Hole RMUG07-06 demonstrates that the LFWZ may extend to surface, with an intersection of 17.9m @ 1.95% Cu.
- Other Exploration Targets: Limited drilling has been undertaken at depth and laterally to the existing deposit. Holes at depth, including 4.5m @ 3.0% Cu have not been followed up and vast areas remain untested.
- Geophysics: The Company sees the potential for large-scale discoveries, particularly through the application of modern geophysical techniques that have yet to be utilised by previous operators.
Strategic Plan Implementation
AuTECO plans to immediately commence implementation of its growth strategy
Phase 1 of the program involves:
- Initial testing of the upper LFWZ extensions to surface
- Immediate commencement of a 700m exploration drill drive
- Testing of the VMS and LFWZ down-plunge extensions
- Downhole geophysics; and
- A resource update in Q3 2024.
Phase 1 drilling accounts for 40,000m of diamond drilling utilising up to three drill rigs.