Pebble to appeal negative permitting decision

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Pebble project, Alaska. Image credit: Northern Dynasty.

(Kitco News) – Northern Dynasty Minerals (TSX: NDM; NYSE: NAK) today announced that its 100%-owned, US-based subsidiary Pebble Limited Partnership to appeal the US Army Corps of Engineers’ (“USACE”) negative Record of Decision (“ROD”) for the proposed Pebble copper-gold-molybdenum-silver-rhenium mine in southwest Alaska.

The ROD issued by the lead federal regulator for Alaska’s Pebble Project on November 25, 2020 denied the project a ‘dredge and fill’ permit under the Clean Water Act on the grounds that its ‘compensatory mitigation plan’ is non-compliant and the project is not in the ‘public interest.’

The Pebble Partnership has 60 days to submit its application for administrative appeal to the USACE’s Pacific Ocean Division Engineer headquartered in Hawaii.

“We will take a significant proportion of the time allotted to us to complete an exhaustive review of the administrative record pertinent to the Pebble Project Environmental Impact Statement and ROD, to prepare a comprehensive and substantive appeal and submit an RFA to the Division Engineer,” said President & CEO Ron Thiessen.

“It is our view that this decision, the process by which it was reached and the facts upon which it is based stand as a significant outlier from standard USACE precedent and practice. We believe there is a sound basis for this permitting decision to be overturned.”

The Pebble deposit is one of the greatest stores of mineral wealth ever discovered, and the world’s largest undeveloped copper and gold resource. The Pebble project’s tonnes, grade, metallurgy and geometry have the potential to support a modern, long-life mine.

The current resource estimate includes 6.5 billion tonnes in the measured and indicated categories containing 57 billion lb copper, 71 million oz gold, 3.4 billion lb molybdenum and 345 million oz silver; and 4.5 billion tonnes in the inferred category, containing 25 billion lb copper, 36 million oz gold, 2.2 billion lb molybdenum and 170 million oz silver. Palladium and rhenium also occur in the deposit.

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