Coeur Begins Production at Palmarejo

Coeur d’Alene Mines’ Palmarejo silver-gold project in Mexico was scheduled to begin production in March.
The mine will combine surface and underground activities to produce about 9 million oz/y silver and
120,000 oz/y gold at peak production. (Photo courtesy of Coeur d’Alene Mines)
Coeur d’Alene Mines reported in late February 2009 that its Palmarejo silver-gold project in Chihuahua, Mexico, was expected to initiate production in March. All processing facilities were nearing mechanical completion, and the first doré pour was expected to take place late in the month. The mine is expected to produce 5.3 million oz of silver and 72,000 oz of gold during 2009 at an average cash operating cost of about negative $0.50/oz of silver. Based on an initial 11-year mine plan, Palmarejo has capacity to produce an average of 9 million oz/y of silver and 120,000 oz/y of gold.

Mining at Palmarejo will take place both from surface and from underground, an approach that will reduce the strip ratio, allow earlier access to higher grade ore and allow efficient exploration from underground.

Production at Palmarejo during 2009 is expected to contribute to a 66% increase in Coeur’s company-wide silver production to 20 million oz and an 85% increase in its gold production to over 85,000 oz from 2008 levels.

As featured in Womp 2009 Vol 03 -