January 22, 2021
As ITI prepares to participate in AME Remote Roundup 2021, five projects in the Northwest Territories are entering new and exciting phases.
We’re marking 5-days of Round-Up 2021 by talking to five companies currently exploring and developing NWT projects with huge potential.
Round-Up 2021 – Day 5
In the Dehcho, the Prairie Creek mine is entering an intriguing new phase as it shifts its plans and priorities.
Don McDonald, president and CEO of project developer NorZinc, describes a venture transitioning from a focus on zinc-lead to silver – in other words, back to Prairie Creek’s origins.
“The Prairie Creek mine was originally built as a silver mine in the 1980s. Since then it has been developing largely as a zinc-lead mine,” says McDonald.
“Things have changed in 2020.”
McDonald and colleagues are moving to increase the mine’s planned throughput which, in turn, looks set to change Prairie Creek’s production profile from two million to three million ounces of silver per year.
“That is a critical level and that is attracting silver investors into the project,” says McDonald of Prairie Creek, which boasts a silver reserve of 32 million ounces and a further inferred reserve of 38 million ounces.
A major underground drill program and robust feasibility study are now planned. McDonald has an eye on opening an operational mine by the end of 2024.
Renewed exploration activity is needed to restore levels of investment, partnership, employment and growth in the NWT’s economy.
Under its “Unlocking Our Potential” banner, the GNWTs Department of Industry Tourism and Investment is promoting mineral exploration and development I the NWT in support of the GNWT’s Mandate to: Increase resource exploration and development.