Evolution guidance unchanged despite slowing production

The Cowal gold mine. Image: Evolution Mining.

Evolution Mining has hit its guidance during the March 2020 quarter, stating it experienced no material impact from the coronavirus pandemic.

The company’s gold production fell during March at the Cowal site in New South Wales and Mt Rawdon and Ernest Henry sites in Queensland due to maintenance shutdowns.

At Cowal, Evolution produced 60,554 ounces of gold, down from 65,080 ounces in the December quarter, reflecting the continued treatment of low-grade stockpile material throughout the period.

Evolution also had planned and unplanned shutdowns at the New South Wales site due to lower mill usage. This is expected to increase the throughput back to nine million tonnes a year in the June quarter.

Production was negatively impacted at Ernest Henry due to an unplanned breakdown in the ball mill, dropping Evolution’s March production at the site to 20,261 ounces of gold and 4470 tonnes of copper, compared with 23,080 ounces and 5355 tonnes of copper in the December period.

The ball mill has since been repaired and Evolution intends to make up for the March shortfall during the June quarter.

At the Mungari and Cracow sites in Western Australia and Queensland, Evolution broke its operating cash flow record with $37.2 million and $31.7 million respectively.

Evolution also produced 32,721 ounces of gold at a significantly lower all-in sustaining cost (AISC) of $1099 per ounce at Mungari during the quarter, compared with 32,751 ounces and $1344 per ounce of AISC in the previous period.

The gold miner’s performance at the Mt Carlton site in Queensland also beat its December quarterly production of 9787 ounces, registering 13,306 ounces for the March period.

The underground development of the site also reached the orebody three months ahead of schedule. Evolution will begin stoping at the site in June.

Evolution is also on track to deliver higher production at Mt Rawdon, Queensland in June, with the recommencement of higher grade ore mining.

In addition to its mining activities, Evolution has been working to support the communities in which it operates as they tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

This includes providing educational materials for schoolchildren learning remotely, donating hampers to nurses at local hospitals, providing personal protective equipment and hand sanitisers to hospitals and emergency service providers and offering temporary employment to locals who have lost their jobs.

Evolution confirmed that none of its employees or contractors had tested positive to coronavirus.

In addition to social distancing measures and travel bans, Evolution has hired additional paramedics to be on site for the duration of the pandemic.

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