Nevada Copper's Pumpkin Hollow Project. Right for Yerington. Learn how copper mining will benefit the city of Yerington, Lyon County, and Nevada jobs.

Facts and Figures

4.3 billion pounds of copper resource at Pumpkin Hollow. What is Copper Used For? Copper is in nearly eerything we use from water pipes, to electrical wiring, cars, refrigerators, cell phones.
2,500 jobs to Yerington by 2016 A typical, dielse-electric railroad locomotive uses about 11,000 pounds of copper.
$81,755: The average earing for metal miners per year
In North America Alone, approximately one half of the copper consumed annually comes from recyled material. Copper's recycle value is so great that premium-grade scrap  has at least 95% of the value of primary copper from newly mined ore.
Copper Market: The International Copper Study Group (ICSG) believes copper supplies are shrinking. The ICSG projects the deficit to climb to 337,000 tonnes, up from 250,000 tonnes in 2010.

Project Timeline

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  • 1960 to 2005:

    From US Steel to Nevada Copper

    US Steel claims the property in the 1960's. Over 550,000 feet of drilling by US Steel, Anaconda, and other min-ing companies discovers and delineates large copper and iron magnetite resources. Expenditures on the prop-erty exceed USD$50 million. In 2005, Nevada Copper acquires the property, with copper prices at $1.40/lb. Exploration and planning of the Pumpkin Hollow project begins.

    Copper Mining
  • 2006 to 2010:

    Exploration and Surface Drilling

    By 2010, Nevada Copper drills another 160,000 feet or surface drilling, which expands the existing mineraliza-tion and provides critical information on the hydrogeological characteristics of groundwater, water supply, de-watering and groundwater protection. The geotechnical, or physical properties of rock, is also determined. These findings are needed to move forward with planning of the Pumpkin Hollow project.

    Mining in Nevada

    Photo: Nevada Copper has drilled over 400,000 feet of exploration holes since 2006.

  • 2007 and Beyond:

    Community Consultation

    In an ongoing effort to maintain open, transparent engagement with the community; and, to develop an envi-ronmentally superior mining operation — Nevada Copper procures necessary permits and develops relation-ships with Mason Valley and the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection. Community consultation is planned for the life of the mine.

    City of Yerington
  • 2010 to 2012:

    Feasibility Study

    The feasibility study begins — this forms the foundation of the mine plan — it looks at the proposed mine to identify and answer the who, what, where, when, how and why of the mine. The key question to be answered is: Can the Pumpkin Hollow mineral resource be developed into a mine? Further, the study identifies potential challenges and risks; and, formulates a plan to address these challenges in the most cost efficient manner.

    Nevada Jobs

    Photo: Numerous environmental studies are underway to design and operate the mine the Right Way. Here, a hydrologist is conducting surface infiltration tests to determine the permeability of the soils.

  • 2011 to 2012:

    Permitting is Procured; Advanced Exploration Construction is Planned

    Nevada Copper plans and permits Advanced Exploration Construction to begin in 2012. During this phase we access deep underground ore zones by sinking a giant shaft into the ground — a 24 feet diameter by 2,200 feet deep shaft — the same square footage as four average sized bedrooms! When it is time to mine the deposit, the shaft is ready and big enough to hoist 7,500 tons of ore per day — enough to cover a basketball court with ore 16 feet deep! An estimated 40 to 60 construction workers will be needed to construct this shaft

    Nevada Mining

    December 2011:

    Contractor Selected for the Shaft Sinking

    An underground contractor is selected to sink the 2,200 feet deep, 24 feet diameter production-sized shaft to access the East underground deposit. Permits are in hand; engineering work begins on the design and installa-tion of hoist and head frame facilities; a production hoist is secured and is being refurbished prior to shipment to the site. The shaft will be lined with concrete for the entire depth — that is more than 20,000 cubic yards of concrete, enough to cover a basketball court with 4 feet of concrete.

    Jobs in Nevada

    Photo: A driller is removing core from a core barrel. Once removed, the core is laid out in boxes and on pallets for transport to the core shed and assay lab.

  • January 2012:

    Feasibility Study Published

    The key results of the feasibility study are published. The results confirm that the economics of the Pumpkin Hollow project support an economically robust copper mine. The initial life of the mine is estimated at 18 years. Subject to completion of project financing arrangements and receipt of required permits, Nevada Copper decides to proceed with development. The company plans to secure a strategic partner to fully finance construction of the mine.

    Lyon County

    January 2012:

    Integrated Operations Decided

    At first, Nevada Copper intended to build the mine in two phases. We planned to first build PLUM, the "Private Land Underground Mine," and then when it was producing we would start construction on FULL, adding the open pit mine production. Initially, the thought was that this 'build it as you go' strategy, would be the most de-sirable way. Plans changed when the feasibility study showed that it would be much more favorable to inte-grate the design, construction, and production of both PLUM and FULL (the underground and open pit mines) at the same time – the Integrated Operation.

    Copper Mining

    January to April-2012:

    Designs of Project Facilities

    Nevada Copper finalizes permit applications and begins detailed design of the project facilities, including:

    • The Underground Mine and the Open Pit Mine;
    • The Process Plant;
    • Tailings Storage, where residual processed ore — which has the copper, gold and silver separated from it — is placed;
    • Mine Rock Storage, where mined rock that contains no minerals will be placed permanently; and,
    • The Infrastructure such as water, electricity, sewer and roads.
    Copper Mine

    January to mid-2012:

    Construction Planning Takes Place

    Each component of the mine undergoes detailed design and construction planning which includes the mining and process methods, equipment selection, mining rates and materials management. Detailed engineering and ordering of key long-lead-time mining and process equipment starts mid-2012.

    Silver Mining

    Photo: Drilling is a perpetual motion operation. While these drillers are working on one hole, the dozer is constructing the next drill site. The dozer will move to the completed drill site once it is done to reclaim it.

    January 2012 to 2013:

    Shaft Sinking Marks the Beginning of Construction

    Shaft sinking—a first step in construction of the underground mine—involves excavation of the 2,200 feet deep, 24 feet in diameter shaft into the ground. Immediately, the purpose is exploration and bulk sample testing. Once we explore the deposit we confirm and refine the initial design and develop the underground facilities. Later, when permits are obtained, we begin to mine and process the ore. As production begins the shaft's main purpose is to lift approximately 7,500 tons of ore each day – again, that is enough to cover a basketball court 16 feet deep.

    Click here to see a mine blast >>

    Mining in Nevada

    Photo: Part of shaft sinking is the construction of a headframe like the enclosed headframe pictured above. Because of the climate here, ours will not be enclosed.

    February 18, 2012:

    Ground Breaking Ceremony

    On February 18, 2012, Nevada Copper hosts a high profile ceremony to celebrate the groundbreaking event of the Pumpkin Hollow project. Joe Dini, former Speaker of the Nevada State Assembly serves as an Honorary Chairman for the event. Finally, after nearly 50 years of exploration and evaluation, the Pumpkin Hollow project is happening. For many, both in Mason Valley and Yerington, this strikes the moment at which all hopes are raised and skepticism for the project dismissed.

  • 2013:

    Integrated Operations Construction Begins

    The construction of the integrated operations, including the underground mine and open pit mine begins:

    • Development of the underground mine continues;
    • The Process Plant is constructed;
    • Initiation of the open pit mine begins, primarily removal of mine rock covering the mineral zones;
    • Water, power, and road access, as well as shops and offices are constructed; and,
    • A construction workforce is hired to start building mine facilities.
    Mining Jobs

    Photo: Water that is pumped from wells is either used for exploration, mining or mineral processing. Otherwise, it must be recharged into the ground, such as in these basins.

    Mid-2013 to 2015:

    Mining Begins

    In 2013, after receipt of permits, Pumpkin Hollow is scheduled to begin mining both the open pit and continue development of underground mine areas. Once construction of processing facilities is complete, ore will be transported to a single Process Plant. The operations workforce is recruited, hired and trained during this period. In addition, it is expected that there will be a significant increase in local business activity from both construction and mining activities.

    Mining Companies
  • 2014 to 2015:

    Integrated Operations: First Payday

    As construction is completed and the ore processing is in full operation, both the open pit and underground mining rates increase, which means the workforce increases. At full operation, Pumpkin Hollow will employ approximately 750 to 800 people. An increase in local business activity is also anticipated during this time. The first sale of concentrate is expected in 2015. After an investment of approximately $1 billion between 2012 and 2015, Nevada Copper will realize its first payday at Pumpkin Hollow!

    Lyon County
  • 2015 to 2035:

    Mining and Process for Underground and Open Pit

    By 2015 Pumpkin Hollow will be in full swing. The underground mine is estimated to produce 7,500 tons of ore each day — enough to cover a basketball court 14 feet deep. In a year nearly 2.7 million tons of ore will be mined from underground, enough ore to cover a football field with ore 57 feet deep. The open pit mine will pro-duce 60,000 tons of ore each day, enough ore to cover a football field with ore 12 feet deep - nearly 214 million tons in a year, enough ore to cover 10 football fields with ore 445 feet deep. Crushed ore is taken to the process plant, where is goes through a milling and flotation process where the mineral containing copper, gold and silver sticks to the bubbles and floats to the top. The resulting concentrate is in a finely ground powder, which is sent via railroad and ships to a smelter, a large furnace that melts the copper, gold and silver and separates it from the rock.

    Mining in Nevada

    2015 to 2035:

    How Much Will be Produced? What is it Worth?

    It is estimated that Pumpkin Hollow will produce 220 to 275 million pounds of copper, 25 to 35,000 ounces of gold and 645 to 845,000 ounces of silver each year. That is enough copper to cover a football field with 100 feet of pure copper! It's market worth: $600 to 800 million depending on current copper prices.

    Nevada Mining
  • 2016 to 2035:

    Concurrent Reclamation and Stabilization

    With the end in mind, Nevada Copper begins the reclamation and stabilization process just two years after processing starts. We clean up as we go. The mine will not process forever, so we have an end–plan in mind for both converting many facilities to other uses, or if that is not possible, removing those facilities that are not needed and cleaning them up. This 'do-it-as-you–go' strategy offers rehabilitation of disturbed lands and stabi-lization of mine components. The populous of Nevada need not worry about a deserted mine in 40 years; nor, worry about chemicals or acids polluting the lands in and around Pumpkin Hollow.

    Copper MineNevada Copper
  • 2040 to 2045:

    Final Reclamation and Stabilization (Post Mining)

    Who knows, this mine could continue well beyond its current planned life. However the mine may be complete by the year 2045. Therefore, Nevada Copper has already set the plans in motion to turn the once mined area into another business entirely. An amphitheater is planned to be built in the nearby hills, the land south of the mine is going to be used as a motocross track. It is not yet decided what the building facilities will be turned into but some potential options might be a solar farm, or other commercial or industrial businesses. So here is to the Right Project. In the Right Place. At the Right Time.

    Nevada Mining


The Mine + The Community

Editorial: Its time to approve...

RGJ Article: Good news in Congress...

The Lyon County Economic...

Heller Gives Speech to Congress....

The Pumpkin Hollow Project is right for yerington, and we want to show you why.

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Nevada Copper