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Donlin Gold

Technical Report


Reaching important milestones in advancing permitting of Donlin Gold.

Permitting began for Donlin Gold in mid-2012 with the submission of the initial permit application to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the "Corps”), the lead federal permitting agency. Permitting in Alaska is a clearly defined environmental review process which is typically coordinated under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), a procedural law that governs the process by which most major projects in the United States are evaluated.

Over the past 6 years, permitting activities at Donlin Gold have been focused on preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The EIS has been the most time consuming aspect of the environmental review process and in large part, has driven the overall permitting timeline for the project. The process involved multiple public comment opportunities. Many issues were identified and thoroughly considered in the EIS process with significant and early input by cooperating agencies as well as the public.

In April 2018, the Corps filed the notice of availability for the final EIS in the Federal Register. Four months later on August 13, 2018, the Corps and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued a single Federal Record of Decision (ROD), along with the combined Clean Water Act Section 404 and Rivers and Harbors Act Section 10 permit and the Offer to Lease for the pipeline right of way at Donlin Gold. .

Concurrent with the NEPA analysis, Donlin Gold continues to work with state and federal agencies to advance all other required permits and approvals. Significant progress has been made, including issuance of the state air quality and Alaska Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (APDES) wastewater discharge permits and the pipeline and hazardous materials safety administration (PHMSA) special permit. Other key state and federal permits and approvals are scheduled to be finalized shortly after the Corps’ ROD. These include the water use and fish habitat permits, the reclamation and closure plan approval, as well as land and shoreline lease and right-of-way approvals. We look forward to soon achieving these key project permitting milestones.

As one of the world’s largest and highest grade undeveloped open pit gold resources, Donlin Gold is well positioned to benefit from rising gold prices. With key permits in hand, the Donlin Gold owners anticipate completion of the optimization work, focused on reducing initial capital outlays and improving project economics, that will provide the basis for the owners to develop the best path forward for the project. The owners expect to provide more guidance on the direction and timing of that path after the 2019 Donlin Gold budget is reviewed and approved by the owners.

Donlin Gold Permitting Graphic

Open Pit
Mining Method
(NOVAGOLD/Barrick Gold Corporation)
27 Years
Estimated Mine Life
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50%-owned, flagship asset
Donlin Gold
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