Millennium Minerals Ltd. on Feb. 26 reported a 20% increase in reserves at its Nullagine gold mine in Western Australia, net of mining depletion and in terms of contained gold.
Nullagine hosts proven and probable reserves containing 221,600 ounces of gold within 4.1 million tonnes grading 1.67 g/t of gold, with the average gold grade increasing from 1.4 g/t in the previous estimate.
Reserves are included within measured, indicated and inferred resources totaling 22.8 million tonnes at an average 1.5 g/t for gold for 1.1 million ounces. The estimate includes initial resources for the Redbeard, AU81 West, Shearers North, Bartons Underground, Bartons Open Pit and Little Annie deposits.
Millennium released an initial estimate of reserves and an updated estimate of resources for Nullagine's Bartons deposit earlier in the year.
The company aims to increase annual production at the operation to more than 100,000 ounces with a minimum five-year mine life, with a study on processing sulfide ore nearing completion.
"Our focus on aggressively growing our oxide reserves will continue this year but, at the same time, we are also on the cusp of being able to unlock our extensive sulfide mineral resource inventory," Millennium CEO Peter Cash commented, noting that the resource update was an interim estimate to incorporate data from drilling completed in 2017.
"As soon as we complete the current Nullagine expansion study based on the recently outlined processing solution, we will be in a position to re-optimize our entire gold inventory and target the conversion of a significant portion of the large sulfide resource inventory to ore reserves — paving the way for a substantial increase in production and mine life."