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Most Common questions

What are the key milestones and goals for 2021?
  • Continue to advance the Donlin Gold project toward a construction/production decision
  • Maintain a healthy balance sheet
  • Maintain an effective corporate social responsibility program
  • Promote a strong safety, sustainability, and environmental culture
What is the Company doing to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic?

NOVAGOLD’s most important objective is to secure the health and safety of its employees, partners and contractors.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to pay particularly close attention to health and safety procedures for all employees, contractors, partners, as well as members of the communities where we operate. To reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19, NOVAGOLD implemented policies in its Vancouver and Salt Lake City offices whereby employees work from home, avoid non-essential business travel, adhere to rigorous hygiene practices, and engage in social distancing. Additionally, NOVAGOLD and its partner Barrick have implemented health and safety policies aligned with the State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services recommendations at Donlin Gold’s Anchorage office and the remote camp by imposing travel restrictions and other COVID-19-related measures aimed at protecting the health and safety of its workforce.

These Donlin Gold protocols, which remain in place, include:

  • requesting all personnel to monitor their health and consult health professionals if feeling any symptoms of illness
  • requiring all personnel to take a COVID-19 test with a negative result before coming into the camp
  • implementing more frequent sanitization practices
  • requiring attendance at safety meetings designed to reinforce sound hygiene and sanitization practices
  • requiring out-of-state contractors and employees to have two negative COVID-19 tests prior to going to camp
  • using chartered flights to transport personnel to and from the site
  • screening employees for symptoms and requiring a minimum of six feet of distance from others in eating areas and living quarters
  • evaluating individuals for symptoms of illness and, if appropriate, isolate and/or evacuate the affected individual from the camp

These protocols will remain in place for the foreseeable future.

Donlin Gold, together with Calista Corporation (“Calista”) and The Kuskokwim Corporation (TKC), continued their long-standing community engagement efforts, focused during 2020 on countering the impact of COVID-19 on Y-K communities. Specifically:

  • Donlin Gold continued to work with Calista and TKC, the owners of Donlin Gold’s mineral and surface rights, respectively, to respond to urgent community needs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. This work was done in addition to the ongoing community engagement in environmental management, safety, training, educational, health, and cultural initiatives
  • Ongoing COVID relief support in collaboration with TKC, Calista and many tribal governments
  • Donlin Gold partnered with Campfire Organization to fund Elder and youth meals throughout the period of COVID. Per the Campfire report, they provided 34,000 meals total over the summer (estimated to be three months). 34,000/90 days = 377 meals per day over the 3 months of Campfire
    • Donlin Gold’s donation allowed Campfire to provide services to 22 communities, 20 of which are our stakeholder villages, serving 4,189 participants and 34,000 meals to Elders and youth in the region. Other donors that made this possible were AVCP and YKHC
    • Additionally, as part of the Donlin Gold response to COVID, we provided shelf-stable food for 532 households in the TKC region ($71,729 not including freight) and provided 260 boxes of fresh produce to the Yukon villages ($7,800 not including freight). A total of 56 villages supported with food and supplies
  • Donated thousands of pounds of food to shelters when Donlin Gold project camp temporarily closed and delivered food to every home in eight middle Kuskokwim villages
  • Collaborated with Aniak, a regional hub, to distribute food and supplies to residents homebound due to health issues and quarantine requirements
  • Assembled and shipped 1,400 facemask-making kits to 56 Yukon-Kuskokwim villages and for every student in the Kuspuk school district
  • Donlin Gold coordinated the delivery of food and supplies to communities now without regular air carrier service after the regional airline went into bankruptcy - Fresh vegetables shipped to all Yukon and coastal communities in partnership with Bethel local grower Meyer’s Farms
  • Supported Bethel Community Services Foundation YK Resiliency Fund
  • Hosted two virtual Alaska Resource Education week-long minerals camps for YK and Doyon students
  • Funding for Bethel Community Services Foundation vulnerable youth services, which are on the rise during COVID
Why should I be interested in NOVAGOLD today?

NOVAGOLD owns 50 percent of Donlin Gold, one of the largest and among the highest-grade open-pit gold development projects in the world. With approximately 39 million ounces of gold in the measured and indicated resource categories grading 2.24 grams per tonne1 – and exceptional exploration potential along an eight-kilometer gold mineralized belt in Alaska, Donlin Gold has all the key attributes that one would seek in a major gold deposit and it's located in an excellent jurisdiction with a track record of strong support for responsible resource development. The recently completed federal permitting process, which resulted in the issuance of a joint Record of Decision (ROD) by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the "Corps") and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), has substantially de-risked the project. With federal permitting activities largely complete and other key State permits advancing, activities have been focused on furthering our geological understanding and integrating scoping-level optimization work into a study that should serve as the basis for an updated project development plan.

While these attributes themselves make NOVAGOLD a compelling target for investors looking for size, grade, scale, resource growth, and jurisdictional safety, there's more to consider. Mine development and operation is a complex business, and we're fortunate to have a great partner in Barrick. Among the largest companies in the gold mining industry, Barrick has a depth of expertise in project development and operation. And we're blessed to have the Calista and TKC, owners of mineral and surface rights, as Native Corporation partners.

Investors should also be encouraged that the drill program completed in 2020 at Donlin Gold delivered better-than-expected results, providing valuable input to project optimization. See drill program releases from August 6, 2020, October 26, 2020 and January 19, 2021 here

We're also strong financially. With a treasury of $121.9 million as of November 30, 2020, plus receivables from Newmont Corp., amounting to $75 million and $25 million, expected to be paid in July 2021 and July 2023, respectively (from the sale of our 50 percent share of the Galore Creek project in July 2018), we're in a strong financial position to execute on our stated objectives to advance the Donlin Gold project.

Finally, NOVAGOLD has an experienced management team with an unparalleled track record in building and operating major mines, as well as a highly regarded board with strong ownership representation, a commitment to sound governance principals, and a firm belief in doing things right from the standpoint of technical excellence, safety, and environmental stewardship. NOVAGOLD is a compelling opportunity for a discerning investor interested in becoming a shareholder in a company committed to value creation in the gold space.

We have a long-term view and believe that NOVAGOLD offers investors all the leverage they could wish in rising gold price environment and at a point when the equity may be even more precious than the metal itself. The collapse in oil prices is a reminder to investors that, unlike oil, gold is not a commodity. It is, first and foremost, a kind of currency that people have accepted as a store of value long before paper currencies. If anything, the understanding and appreciation for gold is only going to improve since it is the only currency that cannot be printed at a time when major reserve currencies are being debased. After a 40-year secular trend of attempted demonetization, gold is re-asserting itself as the only financial asset that doesn't represent someone else's liability. Time is clearly on our side to have an extraordinary return on the Company's investment in Donlin Gold.

1 Donlin Gold data as per the Donlin Gold FS (as defined herein). Donlin Gold measured resources of approximately 8 Mt grading 2.52 g/t and indicated resources of approximately 534 Mt grading 2.24 g/t, each on a 100% basis and inclusive of mineral reserves. Mineral resources have been estimated in accordance with NI 43-101.

What makes the Donlin Gold project so unique among other large undeveloped projects?

It all comes down to geology, potential, economics, location, partnerships, and management.

Geology –With approximately 39 million ounces of gold in the measured and indicated resource categories (541 million tonnes of gold at an average grade of 2.2 grams per tonne)1 , and an additional approximately six million ounces (92 million tonnes at an average grade of 2.0 grams per tonne) in inferred resources, Donlin Gold is one of the world's largest known undeveloped gold deposits. These are excellent numbers, placing Donlin Gold well within the top one percent of known global gold deposits in terms of size. It's also blessed with high grades when compared with other open pit mines and projects. As we've seen in the recent downdraft in the mining industry, this kind of quality counts. Its grade is where the average grade of the industry was ten years ago and is more than double the average grade of gold mines and projects globally2.

Potential – The second updated feasibility study filed in 20123 demonstrated that, as envisioned, Donlin Gold could become one of the largest single gold-producing mines in the world, averaging approximately 1,500,000 ounces of gold production in the first five years of operation and approximately 1,100,000 ounces per year over its 27-year life. And that's assuming no more higher-grade ore is found – or any additional ore at all, for that matter. In addition to its already large mineral endowment, Donlin Gold has excellent exploration potential, with the opportunity to expand the current open-pit resource both along strike and at depth. Considering that the current pit occupies only part of a three-kilometer area that is itself only a portion of an eight-kilometer mineralized belt, in NOVAGOLD's view it is likely that Donlin Gold's mine life, already measured in decades, or ultimate production profile – or both – is likely to be greater than anticipated.

Economics – During the first five years of operations, Donlin Gold's costs applicable to sales are slated to be $411 per ounce of gold (based on costs applicable to sales of $3,003 million); over the life of mine, the average is expected to be $635. All-in sustaining costs during the first five years and over the LOM are expected to be $532 and $735 per ounce, respectively4 . This is very favorable in today's world and a function of the project’s high grade. Donlin Gold's leverage to higher gold prices is exceptional. Its after-tax Net Present Value (NPV), using $1,200 per ounce and a 5 percent discount rate, was estimated at $547 million, as per the second updated feasibility study. This number rises to $6.2 billion if undiscounted. Importantly, the resultant NPV sensitivity analysis showed a more than eight-fold increase in value to $4.6 billion at $1,700 per ounce of gold ($14.6 billion if undiscounted), and then a nearly 50 percent further increase in NPV to $6.7 billion at $2,000 per ounce of gold. At a zero discount rate with which North American assets may once again be rated, that number rises to more than $19 billion5.

Jurisdiction – Unstable and changing geopolitics, including but not limited to economic and political instability, have altered how the market views investment opportunities on the frontier. In our view, it's not an overstatement to say that jurisdictional risk represents the single greatest threat to the mining industry. Many companies and assets in the developing world have been victims of sovereign risk with unanticipated tax increases, royalties, civil unrest, permitting delays, corruption and resource nationalism. Market analysts, commentators, and investors are taking note of the actions by a number of governments to impose higher taxes and royalties on gold and other metal mines in their assessment of project value. We believe that the fact that Donlin Gold is in Alaska, America's second largest gold producing state, on private land already designated for mining and owned by Alaska Native corporations, distinguishes the project from other undeveloped open pit gold deposits. In summary, as a corollary to this heightened awareness, we believe that when sentiment returns to the space, Donlin Gold's location in the United States will give NOVAGOLD a tremendous competitive advantage during a time when heightened resource nationalism and jurisdictional uncertainty is second only to investor sentiment as the most significant factor negatively affecting shareholder value among natural resource companies.

Partnerships – Donlin Gold enjoys broad support, including from our Alaska Native corporation stakeholders, Calista and TKC, who own the mineral and surface rights to Donlin Gold. Our well-established track record of social engagement and environmental stewardship in the community is a huge plus. The government of Alaska cites Donlin Gold as a model project for responsible development, a reputation that was reinforced in 2014 by a unique strategic alliance with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. That's not something you see every day, and we're proud of it.

Management – NOVAGOLD's operating management team is among the most solid in their credentials and pedigree as any you'll find in the industry. Greg Lang, president and CEO, has been fortunate to work with some of the most experienced individuals in the gold sector and on some of its greatest assets. He ran Barrick's top assets – their North American operations – as president for eight years before joining NOVAGOLD. During the majority of his 30-year career, Greg rose through the ranks with Barrick and the companies it had acquired, Homestake Mining and International Corona. Greg leads a team of experienced industry veterans. Dave Ottewell joined NOVAGOLD from Newmont; Mélanie Hennessey joined from Hecla; Ron Rimelman joined from Tetra Tech; and Richard Williams joined NOVAGOLD from Barrick right after bringing into production the mammoth Pueblo Viejo project. Each of these individuals left senior positions at these senior companies because they too see in Donlin Gold a truly unique and attractive gold asset in an era defined by quality asset scarcity.

In summary, Donlin Gold has size and extraordinary grade, industry-leading projected output, a low-cost structure, a company-making mine life, excellent exploration upside, strong local partnerships, and jurisdictional safety. Donlin Gold is a truly unique and attractive gold asset in an era defined by asset scarcity with leverage to rising gold prices in a strong gold environment. Finally, Donlin Gold is well-advanced in the permitting process; positioned to be ready to construct when market sentiment will support construction of a major new gold mine.

(1)See non GAAP financial measures here

1 Donlin Gold data as per the Donlin Gold FS (as defined herein). Donlin Gold measured resources of approximately 8 Mt grading 2.52 g/t and indicated resources of approximately 534 Mt grading 2.24 g/t, each on a 100% basis and inclusive of mineral reserves. Mineral resources have been estimated in accordance with NI 43-101.
2 2019 average grade of open pit and underground deposits with gold as primary commodity and over 1Moz in measured and indicated resources, sourced from S&P Global Market Intelligence.
3 See full technical report here:
4 See non GAAP financial measures here
5 Wood Canada Limited (“Wood” formerly AMEC Americas Limited) is currently updating all sections of the Donlin Gold feasibility study with updated costs, economic assessment, permitting information, and technical information related to permitting, generated on the Donlin Gold project since 2011, which is anticipated to be finalized and filed during 2021. Based on that cost review, Wood determined that updating the Second Updated Feasibility Study using 2020 costs and new gold price guidance results in no material change to the mineral resources or mineral reserves. The economic assessment in the updated study may be materially different than in the 2011 study. Donlin Gold data as per the Second Updated Feasibility Study. Represent 100% of projected capital costs of which NOVAGOLD’s share is 50%.

What is the latest status of the Donlin Gold project?

2020 Drill Program

The Donlin Gold drill program work began in February and continued into March but, due to COVID-19 restrictions and for the safety of all employees and contractors, was temporarily paused in April as a precautionary measure. Re-mobilization began in late May in accordance with Donlin Gold’s updated COVID-19 policies and procedures meeting applicable State requirements and approvals.  Donlin Gold re-mobilized four drill rigs at the project in the second quarter. Despite the temporary pause in the program, Donlin Gold successfully completed an 85-hole, approximately 23,400-meter, drill program in both the ACMA and Lewis deposit areas, exceeding the planned program with additional core holes.

  • Assay results for 67 holes (representing approximately 16,680 meters or 71% of the length drilled) have been received and released to the market jointly by Donlin Gold, Barrick, and NOVAGOLD on August 6, 2020; October 26, 2020; and January 19, 2021. See full press releases here
  • Results to date, in both the ACMA and Lewis deposit areas, continue to exceed modeled grade-thickness, with higher grades observed over narrower intervals, particularly in sedimentary rocks. Reported results from the drilling support modeled lithology and improve understanding of controls of the higher grades. Final assay results for the 2020 drill program are expected to be reported in the coming months
  • As a result of safety precautions, Donlin Gold had no COVID-19 cases at site in 2020
  • Additional drilling is planned in 2021 focusing on mineralization continuity, structural control, and geotechnical data collection. The program specifics will be finalized once all assay results have been received and integrated into an interim model update

Five of the top intervals most recently identified include g/t = grams per tonne, m = meters; results updated as of January 19, 2021 release here “Donlin Gold 2020 Q4 Drilling Program Assay Results Continue to Exceed Modeled Projections While Partners Deliver a Safe and Covid-Free Year”:

  • DC20-1937 intersected 103.88 m grading 6.1 g/t gold, starting at 390.19 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 22.15 m grading 12.5 g/t, starting at 459.17 m drilled depth;
  • DC20-1903 intersected 8.14 m grading 45.3 g/t gold, starting at 99.39 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 6.84 m grading 52.1 g/t gold, starting at 99.39 m drilled depth; 
  • DC20-1912 intersected 37.30 m grading 7.0 g/t gold, starting at 249.70 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 3.30 m grading 24.5 g/t gold, starting at 251.70 m drilled depth;
  • DC20-1930 intersected 39.15 m grading 4.3 g/t gold, starting at 148.85 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 5.60 m grading 12.5 g/t gold, starting at 182.40 m drilled depth; and
  • DC20-1895 intersected 23.80 m grading 6.5 g/t gold, starting at 218.28 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 7.12 m grading 12.7 g/t gold, starting at 220.28 m drilled depth.

Results reported to date from the drilling support continued analysis of the updated lithological model and controls of the higher grades. The initial drill assays exceed the modeled grade-thickness with higher grades observed over thinner intervals.

The newly obtained data will be incorporated into the geologic and resource model and should lead the owners to determine updated mining schedules and life of mine business plans. Ultimately, the information will assist in determining the next steps to update the Donlin Gold feasibility study and initiate the engineering work necessary to advance the project design before reaching a construction decision.

Donlin Gold, with support from the project owners (NOVAGOLD and Barrick), is committed to growing strong and collaborative working relationships with its Native Corporation partners Calista and TKC as well as communities in the Y-K region to preserve traditional lifestyles and support economic development for the benefit of all parties. Donlin Gold LLC, with support from NOVAGOLD and Barrick, remains actively engaged in environmental sustainability projects and extensive, though primarily remote due to COVID-19 safety precautions, outreach efforts with local stakeholders, through multiple traditional village council meetings, regional tribal gatherings, events, and village visits across the Y-K region. Donlin Gold LLC collaborated with Calista and TKC (owners of the mineral and surface rights, respectively) on grants, scholarships, and community outreach efforts. Involving the local communities in all aspects of the project is core to both NOVAGOLD’s and Barrick’s philosophies as illustrated by the fact that approximately 80% of Donlin Gold direct hires for the 2020 drill program were Alaska Natives.

Prior to re-opening the camp and re-mobilizing the drill rigs in late May, Donlin Gold held numerous conversations with community and tribal leaders in the Y-K region to ensure strict adherence to safety protocols at Donlin Gold. With health and safety measures in place, employees from the Y-K region were particularly enthusiastic to return to work at Donlin Gold to mitigate the economic strain caused by the pandemic.

Donlin Gold seeks to bring tangible, long-lasting benefits to all of its community partners in the form of training and employment opportunities, service contracts, and participation agreements as the project advances.

The owners will advance the Donlin Gold project in a financially disciplined manner with a strong focus on environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

What state permits remain outstanding for the Donlin Gold project?

In January 2020, NOVAGOLD reached a number of milestones with the issuance of key transportation and energy infrastructure approvals for the Donlin Gold project including the final state land authorizations for the port, access road, and airstrip, and the final state Right-of-Way (ROW) offer to lease for the buried natural gas pipeline to provide fuel to power the remote project site. The port, access road, and airstrip authorizations were not appealed and have 30-year terms.

During the fourth fiscal quarter, Donlin Gold and its Native Corporation partners continued to support the State of Alaska to advance permits and certificates needed for the project. While the field work related to the issuance of the Alaska Dam Safety certificates was temporarily paused to concentrate on the 2020 drill program, the overall critical path for securing much of the state permitting for Donlin Gold has generally not been affected by the pandemic. Key federal permitting milestones completed include the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and the first-ever Joint Record of Decision (ROD) by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Land Management. Notable state permits and approvals received to-date include the Air Quality permit, the Alaska State Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit, Reclamation Plan and Waste Management permit. State land leases, easements, land use permits, and material site authorizations for the proposed transportation facilities including the access road, airstrip, and upriver Jungjuk port as well as the easement for the fiber optic cable on state lands were issued in early 2020.

On January 28, 2019, ADNR’s State Pipeline Coordinator Services (SPCS) issued a preliminary decision to grant the State Right-of-Way authorization for the buried natural gas pipeline. The public comment period began on January 28, 2019 and ended on March 22, 2019. The final offer to lease was issued on January 17, 2020 and was accepted by Donlin Gold in February 2020. On February 6, 2020, Cook Inletkeeper, on behalf of the Susitna River Coalition and three Native village organizations requested that the ADNR Commissioner reconsider issuance of the ROW lease. The ADNR Commissioner denied the request for reconsideration on February 18, 2020. After Earthjustice filed a court appeal of the lease issuance and reconsideration denial, ADNR changed its position and accepted the reconsideration request on April 30, 2020 specifically to address cumulative effects. On September 10, 2020, ADNR issued a revised Consideration of Comments document, which specifically addresses the potential cumulative effects of the pipeline. The comment period on the revised document ended on November 9, 2020 and ROW lease offer is expected to be reissued in the first half of 2021.

On November 30, 2020, ADNR issued a public notice for comment on Donlin Gold’s 12 water rights applications for the mine site and transportation corridor. The public comment period was ended on December 15, 2020. Final authorizations of the water rights are expected in the first half of 2021.

What is your anticipated spending for Donlin Gold in 2021?

By carefully managing our treasury, we have remained financially strong with $121.9 million in cash and term deposits as of November 30, 2020. These funds are expected to be sufficient to execute on our stated goals of advancing the Donlin Gold project to a construction decision.

We anticipate spending approximately $31 to $35 million in 2021, which includes $18 to $22 million to fund our share of expenditures at the Donlin Gold project, including: $11 million for the 2021 drilling program, camp improvements and studies; $7 million for permitting, community engagement and administration; and an additional $4 million for other studies contingent upon mid-year approval by both owners, and $13 million for corporate general and administrative costs.

How much risk do you see of environmental litigation delaying the project?

NOVAGOLD believes that the risk of environmental litigation successfully delaying the project is relatively low, however, should there be any litigation or delays, we are prepared to work through them with Barrick and Donlin Gold to keep the process moving forward as best we can. With an asset that has a life of mine of almost 30 years, we maintain a view that is long-term while taking a methodical approach to ensure that each step is completed properly – even if that means taking a bit more time.  We believe that the extensive studies including worked completed to date, combined with the level of engagement, transparency, and strong relationships established over 20 years by Donlin Gold with Calista, owner of the mineral estate, TKC, owner of the surface estate, local communities in the Y-K Region, and the State of Alaska mitigates the litigation risk with a large mining project like Donlin Gold.

In Alaska, the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA), came into effect in 1971 and was intended to resolve long-standing issues surrounding aboriginal land claims in Alaska, as well as to stimulate economic development throughout the State. The settlement established Alaska Native claims to the land by transferring titles to twelve Alaska Native regional corporations and over 200 local village corporations. A thirteenth regional corporation was later created for Alaska Natives who no longer reside in Alaska. The Native Corporations must share 70% of their profits with the other Native Corporations.

Part of the reason Donlin Gold’s relationship with local communities is so strong is that these local communities already enjoy tangible benefits from project activities. For instance, since exploration began in 1996, residents have been employed in a variety of roles, forming up to 90 percent of the workforce at the Donlin Gold camp. The proposed project could employ hundreds of workers during development and operations. Through Donlin Gold’s support of scholarships for Calista and TKC youth, sponsorship of academic and trades fairs, and leadership in development of the Alaska Miners Association’s Mining Workforce Development Plan, we are building a foundation that will provide Calista and TKC shareholders and their descendants with the opportunity to thrive as Donlin Gold prospers.

Donlin Gold LLC, with support from NOVAGOLD and Barrick, remains actively engaged in environmental sustainability projects and extensive, though primarily remote due to COVID-19 safety precautions, outreach efforts with local stakeholders, through multiple traditional village council meetings, regional tribal gatherings, events, and village visits across the Y-K region. Donlin Gold LLC collaborated with Calista and TKC (owners of the mineral and surface rights, respectively) on grants, scholarships, and community outreach efforts.

Donlin Gold

Do you have all the surface rights and exploration licenses in place to mine at the Donlin Gold project for as long as there is potential?

Yes. Donlin Gold has a mining lease with Calista and a surface use agreement with TKC with co-terminus terms that grant Donlin Gold the rights to mine so long as the company believes there is valuable mineral potential at the property.

How would you describe the Donlin Gold ore body?

Gold-bearing rock within the Donlin Gold deposit is present in two adjacent areas known as the ACMA and Lewis pits. By the end of the mine life, currently 27 years based on the defined reserve, the two pits would merge at the surface into one oval-shaped open-pit mine with dimensions roughly 2.2 miles long by 1 mile wide. The ACMA pit would have an ultimate depth of approximately 1,850 feet and Lewis would be 1,653 feet deep. Mining of the ACMA pit is proposed in nine phases and the Lewis pit in six phases. The initial mining of the two pits would be independent, but they would partially merge later in the life of the mine. Overburden from the final stages of the Lewis pit would be placed into the ACMA pit, partially backfilling it.

Within the orebodies, southeast-dipping north-northeast-oriented fracture zones are the primary control on gold bearing vein distribution within the north-northeast mineralized corridors. Composite vein zones or mineralized corridors range up to 30 meters in width and extend for hundreds of meters along strike. Intrusive rocks and to a lesser extent competent massive greywacke are the most favored host rocks, and act as a secondary control on the mineralization. Gold distribution in the deposit closely mimics the intrusive rocks, which contain about 74% of the mineral resource identified in the second updated Donlin Gold Feasibility Study (Donlin Gold FS). Structural zones in competent sedimentary units account for the remaining 26%.

Is there potential for a smaller scale project requiring lower initial capital and providing better economics in this gold price environment? Or does the large infrastructure requirement make a smaller scale project difficult economically?

Prior to making a construction decision, the owners will revisit and update the Donlin Gold FS. NOVAGOLD and Barrick already have initiated their review of the Donlin Gold FS, apart from the work being advanced by Donlin Gold, to identify the project components that offer the greatest opportunities for enhancing project efficiencies, execution, operation and hence economics. At this point, Donlin Gold's scale is affected by the need to develop access, fuel, and power infrastructure for the project. While the owners will consider all potentially viable options for design, construction, and operation of a successful project, the best project design available today is the one that Donlin Gold has advanced through permitting.

Can you briefly describe the social stakeholders in the Donlin Gold project and how are you managing your community relations and obligations?

Local communities are our neighbors – and at Donlin Gold, they're the owners of the minerals and land on which the project will be built and operated. Over nearly 20 years of activities at Donlin Gold, we have consistently sought to build strong community partnerships, reach equitable participation agreements with Calista and TKC owners of the mineral rights and surface rights, respectively, and establish good communication with local communities as well as state and federal regulators. At the same time, we collected extensive environmental baseline data to facilitate permitting of the project and developed training and employment programs to engage the local population and businesses in the advancement of Donlin Gold. We're very proud of the relationships that we have with our community partners. We have taken the time to listen to their concerns and carefully designed our project to mitigate those concerns as best we can.

Funding and Valuation

How does NOVAGOLD expect to finance its share of the capital cost of putting Donlin Gold into production?

NOVAGOLD has the funds to pay for its share of costs relating to the permitting of Donlin Gold and optimization efforts. Projects with solid economic fundamentals, which we expect to be the case for Donlin Gold, have diverse and multiple financing options: including equity, debt, and third-party project financing.

Does NOVAGOLD participate in the Direct Registration of Shares (DRS)?

Yes, NOVAGOLD participates in the Direct Registration of Shares with the Company's transfer agent, Computershare. For more information on DRS, share transfers, lost certificates, or a change of address, please contact Computershare

Still Have a Question?

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