TORONTO — Barrick Gold Corp. says it expects to take a US$429-million charge following an order by the Chilean government to close all surface facilities at its troubled Pascua-Lama project high in the Andes mountains.
The gold miner says it is reclassifying Pascua-Lama’s 14 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves, which are based on an open pit mine plan, as measured and indicated resources.
Barrick is studying the potential of developing Pascua-Lama as an underground mining operation, rather than an open pit.
It says the change would address a number of concerns by reducing the overall environmental impacts.
The project, which straddles the Chile-Argentina border, has been criticized for threatening water supplies and glaciers.
Barrick says it will provide a further update on the Pascua-Lama project at the company’s investor day on Feb. 22.
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The Canadian Press