Company officials that the said the Idaho Cobalt Belt is on time with its schedule and also on budget, with one recently met milestone being the completion of the water treatment plant building foundation and mobilisation of the WTP equipment to the site. Major component placement and the erection of the building steel is set for start on August 18.
Additionally, crews have begun lining the tailings waste storage facility (TWSF) and ponds, targeting September for completion, and have finished connecting the potable water system to the site's administration building.
The power distribution systems to the ponds and wells at the site are also now done, along with the earthworks for the pumpback system. System pipeline installation is now in progress, the company said.
A temporary camp for construction staff has been opened, and a fuel island containment pad is done and its equipment should be installed this month. To date, eCobalt has recorded the pouring of 700 cubic yards/535 cubic metres of concrete at the mine and mill site, or a quarter of all concrete that will be needed for the project.
"Very good progress has been made at the ICP by our exceptional team of mining professionals," president and CEO Paul Farquharson said. "In addition [to being on target for a 2020 start], discussions continue to progress with strong interest from multiple potential off-take partners and project financiers in numerous jurisdictions."
The company is focusing on its goal of clean cobalt concentrate for the battery manufacturing market.
The Idaho cobalt project, located near Salmon, is the only near-term environmentally permitted primary cobalt deposit in the US, according to eCobalt officials. A 2017 feasibility study outlined target production rate of 800 short tons/725.7 tonnes per day and a weighted average annual production of 2.4 million pounds/1.08 million kilograms of cobalt, 3.3 million lbs/1.49 million kg of copper and 3,000 oz/85,000 grams of gold over a mine life of 12.5 years.