British Columbia gives construction permit to JDS Silver’s Silvertip mine

30 June 2015 (Last Updated June 30th, 2015 18:30)

British Columbia (BC) in Canada has approved JDS Silver’s proposal to begin construction on the Silvertip Mine, located 16km south of the Yukon border and 90km south-west of Watson Lake.

British Columbia (BC) in Canada has approved JDS Silver's proposal to begin construction on the Silvertip Mine, located 16km south of the Yukon border and 90km south-west of Watson Lake.

According to JDS Silver, including the construction phase, the mine could operate for up to 21 years and create 150 to 200 new jobs upon commencement of full production.

The company will be able to move into the construction phase according to the mines act permit issued by the British Columbia Ministry of Energy and Mines to it.

Construction on the mine is expected to take 15 to 18 months to complete and will involve capital costs of around $50m.

"JDS Silver has committed to dry-stack tailings versus a conventional tailings pond, resulting in very little post-closure impact on the environment."

JDS Silver plans to use underground mining methods to extract high-grade, silver-lead-zinc deposit from the mine.

Kaska First Nation is expected to benefit from the successful operation of the mine, as the company has signed a social economic partnership agreement with it.

The Silvertip Mine site proposes to operate 150 days a year with plans to close each winter temporarily once construction is complete and after obtaining all necessary permits.

For its non-acid generating tailings and acid-generating tailings, the mine will use a combination of dry stack tailings storage and underground storage respectively.

British Columbia minister of energy and mines Bill Bennett said: "Since June 2011, six new mines have opened in British Columbia and with the Mines Act permit issued for Silvertip Mine, this means seven new mines open or under construction since 2011, this investor confidence in mining is unprecedented in Canada."

JDS Silver chief operating officer Kevin Weston said: "After a thorough study of our proposed Silvertip operation by the ministry, JDS Silver is extremely pleased with the outcome of the Mines Act Permit review.

"JDS Silver has committed to dry-stack tailings versus a conventional tailings pond, resulting in very little post-closure impact on the environment. The company intends to leave the land with minimal impact while maximising benefits to all of our stakeholders and our partners, the Kaska First Nation."