Noront Resources Ltd. (TSX-V:NOT) is pleased to provide an update on its work plans for the winter 2014-15 season.
Noront has agreed to support Marten Falls First Nation as the proponent of a winter road to access its Eagle’s Nest Mine in the Ring of Fire. MFFN has submitted a permit application to build a winter road from Marten Falls to Noront’s Esker camp where the Eagle’s Nest Mine will be located. This road will be used to transport bulk materials including fuel and heavy equipment, to be used for work on the existing airstrip and to help ensure that Noront is in position to initiate mining activities once the necessary approvals are in place.
Work on the airstrip is planned for fall/winter 2014 and will be completed under an approved land use plan with Noront’s development partner Marten Falls Logistics (a 100%-owned entity of Marten Falls First Nation). As part of this project, the landing area will be cleared to its final dimensions for use as a winter air strip during the 2014/15 season rather than the previously used ice air strip constructed on Koper Lake. The airstrip will be upgraded for all-season use when waste rock aggregate is available from construction of the underground mine at Eagle’s Nest.
Feasibility Study Update
Noront is currently preparing an update to its 2012 Feasibility Study which is expected to be complete by the end of October. It is being prepared by Micon International based on detailed construction cost estimates provided by the companies contributing to Noront’s Eagle’s Nest project, a group of world class organizations that includes:
-- Cementation - Canada's leading underground mine contractor. Responsible
for underground mine development and concrete formations.
-- Kiewit - A global expert on civil, heavy duty industrial construction
and management of large complex civil/mining projects. Responsible for
access road construction.
-- Nuna Logistics - A leading Canadian aboriginal civil construction and
logistics company. Responsible for winter road, all-season road, site
roads and transportation logistics.
-- ATCO Structures and Logistics - Responsible for permanent camp and
-- AECON Group Inc. - A Canadian leader in industrial construction.
Responsible for mechanical, electrical and instrumentation installation.
-- Outotec - A global leader in process plant equipment. Responsible for
design and supply of the process plant equipment.
-- ABB Ltd. - Responsible for the design, supply of electrification,
automation and communications systems.
-- Atlas Copco - A global leader in underground and process equipment.
These contractors were selected based on their global and northern experience, proven track record of working successfully with First Nation communities, commitment to training an operating workforce and environmental health and safety performance as well as financial terms.
Status of Environmental Assessment
The federal environmental assessment process for Noront’s Eagle’s Nest Mine continued to progress throughout the summer. During that time, additional environmental studies and sampling were completed in response to requests from government reviewers. Comments were also received from several First Nation communities and their concerns/issues are being addressed. Noront is waiting for the provincial government to approve our Terms of Reference for the provincial environmental assessment process. Upon completion of the environmental assessments, we will proceed with the acquisition of the approvals and permits necessary to begin road and mine site construction activities, which are scheduled for a mid-2015 start.
We are also advancing discussions with a number of First Nation communities, with the objective of negotiating Impact Benefit Agreements (IBAs) and community participation in our environmental assessment processes.
Noront is preparing for a winter 2014-15 exploration program that will include completion of geophysical surveys in the early winter and a diamond drilling campaign to follow up on any targets that have been identified. Both our geophysical and drilling contractors utilize local workers. Our 2014/2015 work plan is dependent on receiving certain approvals from the provincial government, local community support and financing.
Noront Resources Ltd. is focused on development of the high-grade Eagle’s Nest nickel, copper, platinum and palladium deposit and the high-grade Blackbird chromite deposit, both of which are located in the James Bay Lowlands of Ontario in an emerging metals camp known as the Ring of Fire.
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