Hecla acquired the Rock Creek project in June 2015 with the acquisition of Revett Mining Company. The Rock Creek project is located approximately five miles northeast of Noxon, Sanders County, Montana (about 50 miles north of the Lucky Friday mine in Idaho).
The project as proposed will encompass approximately 480 acres and be developed in two phases: (1) the construction and development of the evaluation adit, approximately 20 acres, and (2) the development of the mine and construction of the mill facilities. The evaluation program will further define the technical and economic aspects of the project and result in a feasibility study. Presuming a positive feasibility study, and the receipt of the necessary construction permits, Hecla intends to develop Rock Creek as an underground room and pillar mine with conventional crushing and flotation processing.
Consistent with Hecla’s core values, protection of the environment and wildlife is paramount and the Rock Creek Grizzly Bear Mitigation plan will contribute to both the protection and recovery of the species.
Visit the Rock Creek website at www.rockcreekmine.com
Information with respect to measured, indicated and inferred resources is set forth below.
|(As of December 31, 2015 unless otherwise noted)|
|(000)||(oz/ton)||(oz/ton)||(%)||(%)||(000 oz)||(000 oz)||(Tons)||(Tons)||(Tons)|
|Inferred Resources (1)||136,601||1.7||–||–||–||228,616||–||–||–||1,010,770|
- (footnotes)(1) Inferred resources reported at a minimum thickness of 16.0 feet; resources based on $7 Ag and $1 Cu. Rock Creek also contains 1,101,770 tons of copper at 0.7% within stated inferred resource tonnage.
Reporting requirements in the United States for disclosure of mineral properties are governed by the SEC and included in the SEC’s Securities Act Industry Guide 7, entitled “Description of Property by Issuers Engaged or to be Engaged in Significant Mining Operations” (Guide 7). However, the Company is also a “reporting issuer” under Canadian securities laws, which require estimates of mineral resources and reserves to be prepared in accordance with Canadian National Instrument 43-101 (NI 43-101). NI 43-101 requires all disclosure of estimates of potential mineral resources and reserves to be disclosed in accordance with its requirements. Such Canadian information is being included here to satisfy the Company’s “public disclosure” obligations under Regulation FD of the SEC and to provide U.S. holders with ready access to information publicly available in Canada.
Reporting requirements in the United States for disclosure of mineral properties under Guide 7 and the requirements in Canada under NI 43-101 standards are substantially different. This website contains a summary of certain estimates of the Company, not only of proven and probable reserves within the meaning of Guide 7, which requires the preparation of a “final” or “bankable” feasibility study demonstrating the economic feasibility of mining and processing the mineralization using the three-year historical average price for any reserve or cash flow analysis to designate reserves and that the primary environmental analysis or report be filed with the appropriate governmental authority, but also of mineral resource and mineral reserve estimates estimated in accordance with the definitional standards of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum referred to in NI 43-101. The terms “measured resources”, “indicated resources,” and “inferred resources” are Canadian mining terms as defined in accordance with NI 43-101. These terms are not defined under Guide 7 and are not normally permitted to be used in reports and registration statements filed with the SEC in the United States, except where required to be disclosed by foreign law. The term “resource” does not equate to the term “reserve”. Under Guide 7, the material described herein as “indicated resources” and “measured resources” would be characterized as “mineralized material” and is permitted to be disclosed in tonnage and grade only, not ounces. The category of “inferred resources” is not recognized by Guide 7. Investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of the mineral deposits in such categories will ever be converted into proven or probable reserves. “Resources” have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of such a “resource” will ever be upgraded to a higher category or will ever be economically extracted. Investors are cautioned not to assume that all or any part of a “resource” exists or is economically or legally mineable. Investors are also especially cautioned that the mere fact that such resources may be referred to in ounces of silver and/or gold, rather than in tons of mineralization and grades of silver and/or gold estimated per ton, is not an indication that such material will ever result in mined ore which is processed into commercial silver or gold.
The permitting process for Rock Creek is ongoing with the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) from the U.S. Forest Service currently released for public comment. Once completed the Final SEIS along with the upheld Biological Opinion will form the basis of a revised Record of Decision.
The Revett acquisition also brought the Troy mine to Hecla, which was put on care-and-maintenance by Revett and will now be closed by Hecla.