Kemess Underground – A Boon for P.G.
Image shows column of ore to be accessed from underground – image courtesy AuRico Mines
Prince George, B.C. – AuRico Metals which owns the Kemess mine properties 400 kms northwest of Prince George, is hoping to start the Kemess underground project as early as this time next year.
In a presentation to Prince George City Council, AuRico said it knew it had to do things differently with First Nations this time around if they wanted to get the project approved. The previous project ( Kemess North) was rejected because the plan called for tailings to be deposited in Amazay Lake. The new plan not only has a smaller footprint, but tailings would be deposited in a former open pit operation.
The new plan, and the new approach with First Nations so successful, the First Nations wrote letters to the Province in support of the new underground project. In fact, the letters of support were written long before any benefits agreements were finalized, one such agreement is to be signed in Prince George this evening.
AuRico expects the project will have a major financial impact on Prince George, as the bulk of the workforce will be coming from Prince George and from Smithers. AuRico also expects to source its suppliers from Prince George.
If the construction of Kemess Underground starts in mid-2018, the mine could be expected to be in production in either late 2021 or early 2022. It is expected the mine will have a life of about 12 years. Adding to that is the possible development of Kemess East, which would provide another 12 years of mining activity.