Lundin Mining plans to increase production at Eagle Mine

Lundin Mining recently purchased the Eagle Mine and Humboldt Mill from Rio Tinto for $325 million dollars.

One of six community forums was held Wednesday night to allow residents to ask questions and voice concerns about the purchase.

Representatives from Lundin Mining gave a brief overview of the company, and what plans they have for the future of the Eagle Mine and Humboldt Mill.

They say one of their top priorities is to extend the mine’s life by continuing mining exploration.

“One of the best ways of creating value in an existing mine is to make its life longer, so that’s something we’ve been very successful in doing at our other mines,” Lundin Mining’s Vice President of Technical Services Steve Gatley said.  “We believe there is a possibility to do that at the Eagle (Mine) as well.”

“We will be continuing the exploration programs that Rio Tinto has started with the objective of making the mine life longer.”

Lundin Mining will continue the construction Rio Tinto has started, and will fully take over the mine in six weeks.  Increasing construction and production at the mine means Lundin will be hiring more employees.

“We’ll start to ramp up construction(in the next six weeks); Rio Tinto will still manage day to day operations, and once the regulatory process is complete Lundin will take over day to day operations, with the goal of production by early next year,” Dan Blondeau, who works with Rio Tinto’s Communications and Media Department said.

“Rio Tinto itself has about 70 employees, and we’ll be ramping up that production to about 220 (employees),” Gatley said.  “During this construction phase, which is about to start, I don’t have the actual numbers in my head.  But, the peak numbers of those employed will be in excess of 220.”

The community forums run through June 27:  June 20 at the Humboldt Township Hall, June 24 at the Holiday Inn in Marquette, June 25 at the Michigamme Township Hall, June 26 at the Powell Township Hall and June 27 at the L’Anse American Legion.