Jane Werniuk, senior geologist, technical reporting, Agnico Eagle Mines Limited. Olivier Côté-Mantha, principal evaluation geologist, Agnico Eagle Mines Limited.
An ambitious exploration program in a relatively unexplored area in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut, has resulted in an exciting discovery for Toronto-based gold producer Agnico Eagle Mines. In just over three years, the exploration team has advanced the Amaruq project from a new grassroots discovery to a major high grade gold deposit.
Its growing gold resource, currently estimated at 3.7 million oz of gold (19.4 million tonnes grading 5.97 g/t), technical studies and permitting efforts place the project on a trajectory to potentially be ready to go into production by 2019 as a satellite deposit to the Meadowbank mine located 50 km to the south.
The Meadowbank mine is Agnico Eagle’s largest gold producer and Nunavut’s first gold mine. Operations began in 2010, however, Meadowbank is expected to run out of ore by the end of 2018, leaving an 11,000-t/d mill hungry for more.
This looming deadline has helped to sharpen the focus of the company’s regional exploration team. Agnico Eagle’s other Nunavut gold project, Meliadine, lies about 290 km southeast of the Meadowbank mine near Rankin Inlet.
The Amaruq project is one of the most significant greenfield gold discoveries in Nunavut and recent large discoveries in Canada. This success will soon be formally recognized when Agnico Eagle’s exploration team receives the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada’s Bill Dennis Award in March 2017.
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