Dome underground mine closing in December – by Emma Meldrum (Timmins Daily Press – August 2, 2017)

TIMMINS – Porcupine Gold Mines announced Tuesday that mining operations are ending permanently at the Dome underground mine.

“This was a difficult decision, but one that is in the best interest of the long-term sustainability of the Porcupine Gold Mines complex,” said Marc Lauzier, mine general manager of Goldcorp’s Porcupine Gold Mines, in an emailed statement.

“These things are never easy,” Lauzier said later by phone. “Absolutely, it’s a difficult announcement for me to make, but from my point of view, it’s also about optimizing the business to help me secure investments for some of the other projects that we’re trying to do in the area, including Hoyle, including Hollinger, including Borden, and including eventually Century. We have to make these decisions in order to secure those investments.”

Lauzier said that aging infrastructure, productivity and remaining resources were factors included in the decision to close the mine by December 31, 2017. “It just doesn’t make sense anymore,” he said.

Lauzier said that crews were informed of the closure at the same time as the media. In all, 140 people including employees and contractors, will be affected.

“Because we’ve given them six months, they’ve got time to think of their options. Some will be reassigned, and some will unfortunately lose their jobs.” The mine general manager was unable to say how many people could be reassigned to other jobs within the company.

“The decision to cease operations permanently was taken in response to economic conditions and operational challenges associated with aging infrastructure,” noted the statement.

Lauzier said, “We are investing in the future, with projects such as extension of the Hoyle Pond Mine, construction of the Borden Mine and completion of studies for Project Century. Investing in new development means we can deploy the latest technologies, decrease overall operating costs, sustain safe operations and continue to be a significant employer and partner in our community.”

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