Chile's environmental regulator has ordered Gold Fields to adjust its short-tailed chinchilla relocation project following the death of several of the animals last year, Gold Fields said.
Chile's regulator, the SMA, had required Gold Field to clear the project area of chinchillas at the Salares Norte gold-silver project and relocate them.
However, following the death of two to four chinchillas in October 2020, the SMA began sanction proceedings against the project.
SMA has clarified to Gold Fields on how its chinchilla rescue and relocation program needs to be improved. Gold Fields will work with its technical team and independent environmental experts to incorporate these findings into its new relocation programme.
These adjustments will not delay the commissioning of the mine, which is scheduled to be completed in the January 2023 quarter.
Gold Fields said the mine and plant construction is not taking place in the chinchilla habitat.