Evolution Mining has recorded a significant increase to its gold reserves following continued works on the underground expansion of the Cowal gold operation in New South Wales.
Contractor Pybar launched the $22 million expansion (named ‘GRE46’) in March this year after securing a 12-month contract. The expansion is part of Evolution’s wider plan to increase Cowal’s output to 300,000 ounces a year.
Cowal’s total ore reserve has increased by 27 per cent to 3.88 million ounces, representing just over a quarter of the company’s total of 14.73 million ounces across all operations, according to a quarterly statement released by Evolution.
The site’s underground mineral resource has increased by 134 per cent to 1.41 million ounces in the three-month period ending March 31.
Cowal was by far the largest contributor to the company’s quarterly gold sales at 57,495 ounces of a total 167,598 ounces sold.
For point of comparison, the next largest contributor was the Ernest Henry mine in Queensland, from which 25,340 ounces of gold was sold.
Evolution executive chairman Jake Klein said the company had continued to deliver organic growth through its exploration activities.
“We have once again added to both our resources and reserves after accounting for mining depletion,” Klein said.
“A continued focus on extending our average mine life has resulted in further year-on-year improvements with the average group reserve life now approximately ten years.”
Evolution’s copper mineral resource also increased in the quarter by 36,000 tonnes to 982,000 tonnes, but ore reserves were down by 26,000 tonnes to 538,000 tonnes after accounting for mining depletion.
In keeping with the company’s continued expansion, Evolution awarded a drill-and-blast contract to SRG Global earlier this month to provide services for Cowal’s open pit, as well as the Mount Rawdon and Mount Carlton mines in Queensland.
The contract is worth an initial sum of $78 million for three years, extendable to a total of $115 million for five years.