Investors like to see mining companies making progress with their drill programmes. It is equally important to recognise however, progress in relation to meeting environmental requirements, particularly if they are with provincial or state governments. Toronto and Frankfurt listed Yukon-Nevada Gold Corp. (TSX-V: YNG; Frankfurt: NG6) has been making remarkable progress with its environmental assessments in Nevada. Results from its most recent stack emission tests at the wholly owned subsidiary Queenstake Resources USA, Inc's Jerritt Canyon Gold Mine continue to improve well below the maximum levels specified in the Consent Decree entered into with the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection ("NDEP").
NDEP is a legal agreement which entails certain environmental milestones to be achieved by YNG. The company’s continued efforts to achieve these milestones not only confirm the management’s commitment to the project but also indicate the prospects of the project. One does not embark upon costly environmental assessments on projects which are less than economical.
The tests were carried out on the Jerritt Canyon gold treatment plant near Elko, Nevada under normal operating conditions by the independent stack testing group and have confirmed the capabilities, consistency and stability of the chosen control technology to improve stack test emissions at Jerritt Canyon. Since this programme commenced at the end of calendar year 2009 results have steadily improved to well below the required standards.
The Jerritt Canyon Mine is the flagship project of the company and is operated by a fully owned subsidiary, Queenstake Resources USA Ltd. The company continues its development efforts at the Jerritt Canyon Mine and recently announced excellent assay results from the remaining 2008 diamond and reverse circulation drilling. Drilling from surface and underground stations has continued to identify or extend gold mineralization beyond known resources.
Unlike many other exploration stories, YNG is a producing company. The Jerritt Canyon Mine has a current annual production of 50,000 oz. The company expects to ramp up production to 150,000 oz per annum in 2010. The increase is expected to be realised through infrastructure improvements, increased access to a larger percentage of the current reserve and through near mine exploration.
The latest stack test results from Jerritt Canyon, continue to show the effectiveness of the technology developed to limit mercury emissions. The mercury emissions from the stacks continue to fall and are now 11% of the levels permitted under the consent decree, and ultimate discharge improvements may not have been fully realized. Other contaminants such as SO(2) and particulate are also falling and are approximately 1% of the allowed limits.
Chief Operating Officer Graham Dickson, responsible for design, development, installation and commissioning of the patent pending technology at the Jerritt Canyon plant, stated that YNG will bring the same expertise, focus and energy to bear on all of its environmental tasks designed to deal with present operations and residual problems from past operations.
YNG recently raised $5 million private placement and is well financed. With improving gold fundamentals and its continued development efforts, markets are set to re-rate YNG.
About Yukon-Nevada Gold Corp
Yukon-Nevada Gold Corp. is a North American gold producer in the business of discovering, developing and operating gold deposits. The Company holds a diverse portfolio of gold, silver, zinc and copper properties in the Yukon Territory and British Columbia in Canada and in Nevada in the United States. The Company's focus has been on the acquisition and development of late stage development and operating properties with gold as the primary target. Continued growth will occur by increasing or initiating production from the Company's existing properties.
Disclosure: The author holds no positions in the company