Pretium Resources has secured a mine permit for its new $750m Brucejack project in British Columbia, Canada, and has passed all provincial and federal environmental agency approvals.
The British Columbia minister of energy and mines Bill Bennett gave the environmental assessment decision statement saying that the underground gold and silver mine is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects.
The project recommendation issued by issued by Bennett includes a determination regarding the potential effects of the project under the Nisga’a final agreement.
According to Pretium Resources, the agreement was signed by the governments of Canada, British Columbia and the Nisga’a Nation.
Prior to announcing the decision, Bennett considered the project recommendation and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency’s (CEAA) environmental assessment report, which includes the CEAA’s conclusions and recommendations on the potential environmental effects the project may have.
Brucejack mine is being developed 65km north-west of Stewart and expected to create around 900 jobs during the two-year construction period, with 500 positions in an estimated operating life of 18 years.
Once the mine reaches its full production capacity, it is expected to produce up to 2,700t of ore a day.
Pretivm expects commercial production target for Brucejack by 2017.
The Brucejack mine will produce tailings that will be stored underground and in Brucejack Lake, which contains no fish.
As the company plans to use best available technology recommended by the independent panel that investigated the Mount Polley breach, no negative impact will be seen on downstream water in Canada or Alaska.
Bill Bennett said: "With Brucejack, an unprecedented eight new mines have now opened or started construction since June 2011, an achievement unmatched by any other jurisdiction in Canada."
Pretium Resources chairman and chief executive officer Robert Quartermain said: "We have always been excited by the prospect of Brucejack as a high-grade gold mine.
"Now we’re proud to demonstrate that as an underground gold mine with a small footprint, Brucejack can bring significant economic benefits to northern British Columbia with minimal environmental impact."