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NOVAGOLD reports 1Q21 financial results

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Global Mining Review,

NOVAGOLD RESOURCES INC. has released its 1Q21 financial results and an update on its Tier One gold development project Donlin Gold, which NOVAGOLD owns equally with Barrick Gold.

NOVAGOLD and Barrick, through a joint release issued on 25 March 2021, reported the last set of assay results from the successful 2020 drill programme at Donlin Gold:

  • The 85-hole drill program, totalling 23 361 m in the proposed ACMA and Lewis pit areas, was successfully carried out in order to further increase confidence in recent geologic modelling concepts.
  • Results in both the ACMA and Lewis deposit areas exceeded the previously modelled grade-thickness, with higher grades observed over narrower intervals, particularly in sedimentary rocks.
  • Data collected has resulted in an improved appreciation of the controls on mineralisation.
  • With extensive communication and the application of health and safety protocols, there were zero COVID-19 cases at the project site and no Lost-Time Incidents.
  • Ten of the top intervals for the 2020 drill programme were contained in the Donlin Gold joint media release issued subsequent to quarter-end:
    • DC20-1937 intersected 103.88 m grading 6.1 g/t gold (Au), 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.
    • DC20-1871 intersected 41.91 m grading 11.61 g/t Au, starting at 30.35 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1903 intersected 8.14 m grading 45.3 g/t Au, starting at 99.39 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 6.84 m grading 52.1 g/t Au, starting at 99.39 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1877 intersected 4.17 m grading 80.6 g/t Au, starting at 123.48 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 3.15 m grading 106.2 g/t Au, starting at 124.5 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1888 intersected 6.93 m grading 43.1 g/t Au, starting at 178.58 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 3.25 m grading 90.5 g/t Au, starting at 180.26 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1912 intersected 37.3 m grading 7 g/t Au, starting at 249.7 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 3.3 m grading 24.5 g/t Au, starting at 251.7 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1930 intersected 51.15 m grading 4.6 g/t Au, starting at 148.85 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 7.6 m grading 12.4 g/t Au, starting at 182.4 m drilled depth.
    • DC20-1866 intersected 45.91 m grading 5.03 g/t Au, starting at 35.39 m drilled depth; 23.36 m grading 4.15 g/t Au, starting at 108.3 m drilled depth; and 30.28 m grading 4.2 g/t Au, starting at 226.53 m drilled depth.
  • DC20-1932 intersected 47.66 m grading 4.8 g/t Au, starting at 101.62 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 4 m grading 19.5 g/t Au, starting at 143.28 m drilled depth.
  • DC20-1878 intersected 19.77 m grading 11.3 g/t Au, starting at 48.86 m drilled depth, including a sub interval of 7 m grading 25.2 g/t Au, starting at 54.86 m drilled depth.
  • The Board of Donlin Gold is considering additional confirmation and extension drilling in 2021 to expand upon recently obtained information into the continuity and structural controls of the higher-grade mineralisation, which will be incorporated into the geological model.

In 1Q21, the following milestones were achieved:

  • Donlin Gold, together with Calista and TKC, continued their long-standing community engagement during the quarter:
    • In partnership with TKC, the Village of Crooked Creek, and Napaimute Tribe, Donlin Gold was again the lead sponsor of a project to construct and maintain the upper portions of a 200-mile ice road on the Kuskokwim River.
    • In mid-January, the Middle Kuskokwim village of Tuluksak with a population of approximately 370 had its water supply plant destroyed by fire, creating a health and safety crisis for the community. In the days following, Donlin Gold and several other community organisations, companies, and individuals stepped in to assist in the effort, providing drinking water, buckets for carrying and storing water, sanitary wipes, diapers, and other health supplies.
    • As part of Donlin Gold’s ongoing community engagement efforts, Friendship Agreements have been approved and signed by six communities (Akiak, Sleetmute, Napaimute, Crooked Creek, Napaskiak, and Nikolai) in the project’s region. These agreements with Donlin Gold expand upon the long-term relationships already established with these communities and address specific community needs such as water, sewer, and landfill projects; the ice road that connects remote villages in the Yukon-Kuskokwim (Y-K) region during winter; salmon studies; and suicide prevention programmes.
  • With key Federal and State permits in hand, Donlin Gold advanced additional State permits:
    • In November 2020, the Alaska Department of Natural Resources (ADNR) published an initial public notice for comment on Donlin Gold’s 12 applications for water rights for the mine site and transportation facilities, which closed on 15 December 2020. Water rights are for local surface water sources and groundwater to be used for process water, dust control, fire protection, and potable water. In March 2021, ADNR introduced a second two-week public notice period, which closed 26 March 2021. It is anticipated that the ADNR will issue final decisions on the water rights applications in 1H21.
    • In April 2020, the ADNR’s Division of Oil and Gas agreed to reconsider its decision on the State Right-of-Way (ROW) agreement and lease authorisation for the buried natural gas pipeline. Under the reconsideration, on 10 September 2020, the ADNR issued for additional public comment a revised Consideration of Comments document. This document further describes how the ADNR is considering previous public input that was solicited in the ROW review, including how cumulative effects are addressed in the decision. The comment period on the document ended on 9 November 2020. It is expected that the ADNR will re-issue the ROW agreement and lease authorisation in 1H21.
    • Donlin Gold, working with its Native Corporation partners, continues to support the State of Alaska to advance other permits and certificates needed for the project.

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