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Pebble owner to raise permitting funds

 

Last updated 3/22/2019 at 6:17am

Pebble mine project owner Northern Dynasty to raise permitting funds

Pebble Limited Partnership

A helicopter waits during a rig visit during the 2011 drill program at Pebble deposit. Today, Pebble Partnership is working towards gaining the permits needed to develop an environmentally optimized mine at this world-class copper-gold-molybdenum project in Southwest Alaska.

Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. March 12 announced plans to raise US$10 million to continue permitting and stakeholder engagement for its Pebble copper-gold-molybdenum project in Southwest Alaska.

Cantor Fitzgerald Canada Corp. has agreed to lead a syndicate of underwriters, which also includes BMO Capital Markets, H.C. Wainwright & Co., LLC. and TD Securities Inc., to purchase, on a bought deal basis, 15.63 million Northern Dynasty common shares at US64 cents per share, for gross proceeds of US$10 million.

In addition, the Pebble project owner has agreed to grant the underwriters an over-allotment option to purchase up to an additional 2.34 million Offered Shares at the same price for up to 30 days after the closing of the offering. If exercised in full, this would increase the gross proceeds to US$11.5 million.

Northern Dynasty has agreed to pay the underwriters a 6 percent cash commission on the gross proceeds raised.

The company plans to use the net funds raised used for operational expenditures, including engineering, environmental, permitting and evaluation expenses associated with the Pebble project; advancement of completion of the United States Army Corps of Engineers Environmental Impact Study; enhanced outreach and engagement with political and regulatory offices in the state and federal government, Alaska Native partners and broader regional and statewide stakeholder groups; and general corporate purposes.

In February, Corps published a draft environmental impact statement for an environmentally optimized mine that balances the environmental considerations of developing a mine in an area of Alaska renowned for its salmon fishery and the economics of developing an equally outstanding deposit of copper.

The Pebble Mine under consideration in the EIS is expected to produce 5.74 billion pounds of copper, 6.4 million ounces of gold, 260 million lb of molybdenum and 32 million oz of silver over this 20-year mine life.

Pebble Partnership, currently solely owned by Northern Dynasty Minerals, believes the mine plan outlined in the draft EIS demonstrates the thoroughness and thoughtfulness that its engineers put into this plan.

"We have stated that the project must co-exist with the important salmon fishery in the region and we believe we will not harm the fish and water resources in Bristol Bay," said Pebble Partnership CEO Tom Collier. "Now we have a science-based, objective assessment of the project that affirms our work."

The release of the Draft EIS marked the start of a 90-day comment period, which will include a series of public hearings to be carried out in Southwest Alaska, where the world-class Pebble deposit is located, and Southcentral Alaska, the state's population center, in April.

Corps will use the comments collected during this period to incorporate changes into a final EIS, expected to be completed in about a year.

In the meantime, Northern Dynasty will continue to work on bringing on a partner to advance Pebble into development.

"It remains the company's goal to partner the Pebble project," Northern Dynasty wrote in its financing announcement.

–SHANE LASLEY

 

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