LAKEWOOD, Colo., Dec. 2, 2014 /CNW/ -- Pershing Gold Corporation (OTCQB:PGLC) ("Pershing Gold" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that Mine Development Associates ("MDA") of Reno, Nevada has completed a Technical Report for Pershing Gold's Relief Canyon Mine in Pershing County, Nevada. The MDA Technical Report discusses in detail the resource estimate, previously announced in March 2014, based on the results from drilling completed through 2013. In addition, The Technical Report summarizes the recent final Relief Canyon Heap Leach Cyanidation Report completed by McClelland Laboratories, Inc. ("MLI") reporting results of metallurgical tests from earlier this year. The Technical Report also makes recommendations for further metallurgical tests and continued drilling at Relief Canyon. The new Technical Report is available on the Company's website at www.pershinggold.com.
As previously reported in the Company's March 31, 2014 news release the MDA resource estimate shows a Measured and Indicated resource of 552,000 ounces of gold and an Inferred Resource of 165,000 ounces of gold. MDA's estimate was prepared following the definitions and guidelines adopted by the Canadian Institute of Metallurgy ("CIM"). These definitions and guidelines satisfy the requirements of Canadian National Instrument 43-101. MDA geologist, Paul Tietz, Certified Professional Geologist, was the qualified person responsible for preparing the Technical Report and resource estimate.
"This Technical Report presents a snapshot of the Relief Canyon resource estimate based on drilling completed through 2013 and includes metallurgical recommendations based on the recent results of the column leach tests completed this year," stated Stephen D. Alfers, Pershing Gold's Chairman and CEO. "The resource estimate it refers to does not include any of the results from our 2014 drilling program.
"We expect this resource to expand in 2015 when we complete an updated resource estimate that incorporates the results from our aggressive 2014 development drilling program," Alfers explained. "So far this year, the Company has drilled 85 core holes, and currently has three rigs on site with drilling planned through the beginning of next year. We expect our 2014 core drilling program to complete approximately 95 holes (approximately 60,000 feet), and we will continue into early 2015 to complete up to a total of 120 core drill holes (approximately 75,000 feet). This will more than double the number of core holes previously drilled at the conclusion of the 2013 program at Relief Canyon," commented Alfers.
The Technical Report identifies an opportunity to eliminate uncertainties about gold intercepts below the water table in the historic reverse circulation drill hole database by drilling core holes in these areas. Pershing Gold's 2014 core drilling program has already made significant progress drilling core holes in areas of the deposit where reverse circulation drill holes intercepted gold mineralization below the water table. As explained in the Company's September 15 press release, it appears that gold mineralization is under represented in some of the reverse circulation drill holes due to sample recovery problems below the water table. In discussing this issue, the MDA Technical Report states "The exclusion of some of the North area mineralized intercepts from the reverse circulation drill-hole database has undoubtedly eliminated some mineralization that is real."
The Company's ongoing core drilling program will continue to test those parts of the deposit where confirmation core drilling can potentially expand the gold resource – either by adding ounces or upgrading existing ounces from the Inferred resource classification to the Indicated or Measured resource classification.
The Technical Report includes a detailed chapter on mineral processing and metallurgical testing written by Jack McPartland, Vice President of Operations with MLI. This chapter also reviews all of the metallurgical testing data available for the deposit and presents a thorough discussion of the column leach tests completed earlier this year by MLI. As reported in the Company's May 12 and June 23 press releases, two composite columns containing a representative blend of the Main Zone mineralization types had gold recoveries of 79 percent and 82 percent when leached for 70 to 91 days.
One of the key recommendations for additional metallurgical work in MDA 's report is to perform column leach tests of the Lower and Jasperoid Zones to support future mine planning. The Company is planning to drill metallurgical core holes in the Lower and Jasperoid Zones to obtain samples for the recommended column leach testing program on these zones, with the objective of completing the column leach tests in 2015. The Company anticipates that the duration and scope of the column leach tests on the Lower and Jasperoid Zones will be similar to the program completed this year on the Main Zone. The other metallurgical work recommended in the Technical Report will be performed as necessary to refine the current mine plan. The projected cost for these column leach tests is roughly $170,000.
"The Technical Report reaches an important conclusion about the Relief Canyon Mine," stated Alfers. "The report finds that the currently available metallurgical testing data are adequate to support our current mine plan for the Main Zone ores that we are planning to process using heap leaching," explained Alfers citing from the conclusions in the Technical Report.
Scientific and Technical Data
All scientific and technical information related to drill and surface samples for the Relief Canyon project has been reviewed and approved by Larry L. Hillesland, Certified Professional Geologist #11720, who is a Qualified Person under the definitions established by Canadian National Instrument 43-101. Drill core at Relief Canyon is boxed and sealed at the drill rig and moved to the Relief Canyon logging and sample preparation facilities by trained personnel. The core is logged and split down the center using a typical table-fed circular rock saw. One half of the core is sent for assay to Skyline Assayers & Laboratories of Sparks, Nevada, while the other half is returned to the core box and stored at Relief Canyon in a secure, fenced-off, area. Pershing Gold Corporation quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) procedures include the regular use of blanks, standards, and duplicate samples.
About Pershing Gold Corporation
Pershing Gold is an emerging Nevada gold producer on a fast-track to re-open the Relief Canyon Mine, which includes three open-pit mines and a state-of-the-art, fully permitted and constructed heap-leach processing facility. Pershing Gold is currently permitted to resume mining at Relief Canyon under the existing Plan of Operations.
Pershing Gold's landholdings cover over 25,000 acres that include the Relief Canyon Mine asset and lands surrounding the mine in all directions. This land package provides Pershing Gold with the opportunity to expand the Relief Canyon Mine deposit and to explore and make new discoveries on nearby lands.
Cautionary Note to United States Investors Regarding Estimates of Measured, Indicated and Inferred Resources
We use certain terms, or refer to reports that use these terms, in this press release such as "measured", "indicated" and "inferred resources", that are defined in Canadian National Instrument 43-101; however these terms are not recognized under the U.S. SEC Industry Guide 7. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that any or all of measured, indicated or inferred resources are economically or legally mineable or that these resources will ever be converted into reserves. "Inferred mineral resources" have a high degree of uncertainty as to their existence and it cannot be assumed that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. U.S. investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and other SEC filings. You can review and obtain copies of these filings from the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov/edgar.shtml.
Legal Notice and Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, including, without limitation, those with respect to the objectives, plans and strategies of the Company set forth herein including the planned reopening and recommissioning of the Relief Canyon mine and processing facilities, anticipated additional drilling and other exploration work on Pershing Gold's Relief Canyon properties, anticipated expansion and upgrade of the Relief Canyon deposit as a result of drilling, planned update of estimates of mineral resources and the timing thereof, additional metallurgical work including additional column leach tests; anticipated timing of future 43-101 reports; costs of future exploration and metallurgical work; interpretations of exploration results and other geologic information at Relief Canyon, and those preceded by or that include the words "believes," "expects," "given," "targets," "intends," "anticipates," "plans," "projects," "forecasts" or similar expressions, are "forward-looking statements." Although the Company's management believes that such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee that such expectations are, or will be, correct. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties, which could cause the Company's future results to differ materially from those anticipated. Potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, inability to obtain external financing to fund the development of plans for and the reopening and commencement of production at the Relief Canyon Mine, planned exploration, or to maintain property rights; unanticipated delays or results in the updated 43-101 resource report planned in 2015; interpretations or reinterpretations of geologic and metallurgical information or unfavorable exploration results that could negatively affect estimates of resources; delay or inability to obtain permits required for planned production, including permits to mine the deposit below the water table, for exploration and other activities; general economic conditions and conditions affecting the industries in which the Company operates; the uncertainty of regulatory requirements and approvals; decreases in gold and other mineral and commodity prices; risks of junior exploration and pre-production activities; and maintenance of important business relationships. Additional information regarding the factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements is available in the Company's filings with the SEC including the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2013. The Company assumes no obligation to update any of the information contained or referenced in this press release.
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SOURCE Pershing Gold Corporation
For further information: Jack Perkins, Vice President, Investor Relations, 720.974.7254, [email protected], www.PershingGold.com, http://www.pershinggold.com