While recent news about the Northern Manitoba mining industry has mostly focused on ontraction and closures in Thompson and Flin Flon, Hudbay Minerals Inc. announced Feb. 19 that it expects gold production from its Lalor mine near Snow Lake to more than double by 2022 after it reopens the New Britannia mill, which will allow it to recover greater quantities of the precious metal from the ore.
Hudbay said in a press release that the refurbished New Britannia mill – a project the company will spend about $124 million on – is expected to achieve gold recoveries of 93 per cent from the copper-rich Lalor ore compared to current recovery rates of about 53 per cent at the stall Mill.
Hudbay intends to spend $10 million this year on the New Britannia mill, which will eventually be equipped with a copper flotation and dewatering circuit as well as a pipeline to direct the tailings to an existing facility.
The Lalor mine, which was discovered in 2007 and began commercial production just seven years later, has a current mining capacity of 4,500 tonnes per day, which the company intends to maintain for the first six years of their mine plan.
The Stall mill is expected to process about 3,500 tonnes per day from now through the end of 2021, with the other 1,000 tonnes being trucked to Hudbay’s Flin Flon mill for processing. After the New Britannia mill is refurbished, the amount of ore processed at the Stall mill is expected to drop to about 1,800 tonnes per day.