Largest Gold Mines in North America – Q1 2020

Carlin was the largest gold mining center in North America during Q1 2020. Barrick’s operations occupied first three spots in the ranking.

The following is an overview of the top ten largest gold operations in North America during Q1 2020 created by Mines and Metals on the basis of companies’ reports.

To outline the boundaries of North America region, Mines and Metals followed the UN definition that formally recognizes “North America” as a region comprising three areas: Northern America, Central America, and The Caribbean. This has been formally defined by the UN Statistics Division.

After two mining behemoths, Barrick and Newmont, have concluded a joint-venture transaction in July 2019, establishing Nevada Gold Mines LLC (owned 61.5% and operated by Barrick, and owned 38.5% by Newmont), the whole gold mining playing field in the United States and worldwide has been disrupted.

Barrick/Newmont JV established two new reporting mining entities that have no comparable production data for Q1 2019:

  • Barrick’s Goldstrike (including Barrick’s 60% share of South Arturo) and Newmont’s Carlin were contributed to Nevada Gold Mines and are now referred to as Carlin.
  • Barrick’s 75% interest in Turquoise Ridge and Newmont’s Twin Creeks and 25% interest in Turquoise Ridge were contributed to Nevada Gold Mines and now referred to as Turquoise Ridge.

Barrick’s Carlin complex in Nevada was the largest gold mining operation in North America in Q1 2020 and third largest in the world in 2019. Q1 2020 gold output at Carlin amounted to 411 koz.

Barrick’s Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic is fourth largest gold mine in the world and second biggest gold operation in North America with 238 koz mined during Q1 2020.

Another Barrick’s Cortez operation is third largest gold mine in North America in Q1 2020 and fifth largest in the world in 2019. In Q1 2020, Cortez produced 208 koz of gold, a 21% decline over Q1 2019 (262 koz).

With estimated 140 koz of gold mined in Q1 2020, Kirkland Lake’s Detour Lake gold mine was fourth largest gold mining operation in North America and the largest gold mine in Canada.

Barrick’s Turquoise Ridge is fifth with 137 koz of gold mined in Q1 2020.

The complete list is below.

Largest gold mines in North America – Q1 2020. Source: Mines and Metals.

OperationCountryOwnerQ1 2020 Au output, kozQ1 2019 Au output, koz% change
1Carlin*United StatesBarrick411n/an/a
2Pueblo ViejoDominican RepublicBarrick238247-4
3Cortez**United StatesBarrick208262-21
4Detour*** LakeCanadaKirkland Lake140155-10
5Turquoise RidgeUnited StatesBarrick137n/an/a
6Canadian MalarticCanadaYamana / Agnico130167-23
7Penasquito****MexicoNewmont116n/an/a
8El Limon Guajes / MorelosMexicoTorex Gold1097839
9Round MountainUnited StatesKinross8485-1
10BrucejackCanadaPretium83795

* On July 1, 2019, Barrick’s Goldstrike and Newmont’s Carlin were contributed to Nevada Gold Mines and are now referred to as Carlin. As a result, the amounts presented represent Goldstrike on a 100% basis (including Barrick’s
60% share of South Arturo) up until June 30, 2019, and the combined results of Carlin and Goldstrike (including Barrick’s 60% share of South Arturo) on a 61.5% basis thereafter. No comparative data for 2018 is available.
** On July 1, 2019, Cortez was contributed to Nevada Gold Mines, a joint venture between Barrick and Newmont Corporation. As a result, the amounts presented are on an 100% basis up until June 30, 2019, and on a 61.5% basis thereafter. No comparative data for 2018 is available.
*** Detour Lake. Estimation based on two months of reported production.
**** Penasquito. Data for Q1 2019 unavailable due to Newmont&Goldcorp merger.

1. Carlin, USA. 411 koz.

Carlin gold mine. Source: Newmont

On July 1, 2019, Barrick’s Goldstrike (including 60% share of South Arturo) and Newmont’s Carlin were contributed to Nevada Gold Mines and are now referred to as Carlin. This gigantic integrated operation located west of the city of Elko on the geologic feature known as the Carlin Trend. Stretching 56km (35mi), the Carlin Trend was first prospected by Newmont geologists John Livermore and Alan Coope in 1965.

2. Pueblo Viejo, Dominican Republic. 238 koz.

Pueblo Viejo gold mine. Source: Barrick

The Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic is about 100 km northwest of the capital city of Santo Domingo. The mine is operated by the Pueblo Viejo Dominicana Corporation — a joint venture between Barrick (60%) and Newmont Goldcorp (40%).

3. Cortez, USA. 208 koz.

Cortez mine. Source: Barrick

Cortez Gold Mine is a large gold mining and processing facility in Lander and Eureka County, Nevada, United States, located approximately 75 miles (120 km) southwest of Elko and comprises the Pipeline and South Pipeline deposits and the Cortez Hills deposit. Pipeline and South Pipeline are open pit mines, while Cortez Hills is an underground and open pit mining operation. On July 1, 2019, Cortez was contributed to Nevada Gold Mines, a joint venture between Barrick and Newmont Corporation.

4. Detour Lake, Canada. 140 koz.

Detour Lake mine. Source: Detour Gold.

The Detour Lake open pit mine is located in northeastern Ontario, approximately 300 kilometres northeast of Timmins and 185 kilometres by road northeast of Cochrane, within the northernmost Abitibi Greenstone Belt. The operation is situated in the area of the historic Detour Lake open pit/underground mine operated by Placer Dome which produced 1.8 million ounces of gold from 1983 to 1999. Detour Gold acquired the property in January 2007, completed a feasibility study in June 2010 and commenced gold production in February 2013. The Detour Lake operation has a mine life of approximately 22 years with an average gold production of 659,000 ounces per year, and includes the development of the West Detour project which is currently being permitted. Kirkland Lake Gold completed acquisition of Detour Gold on January 31, 2020.

5. Turquoise Ridge, USA. 137 koz.

Turquoise Ridge gold mine, Nevada. Source: Barrick.

Barrick’s Turquoise Ridge mine complex (Nevada, United States), has considerable untapped potential and is becoming a core operation for Barrick.

6. Canadian Malartic, Canada. 130 koz.

Canadian Malartic mine. Source: Agnico Eagle.

Canadian Malartic, 25 km west of Val-d’Or, northwest Quebec, is the largest operating gold mine in Canada. The large open-pit mine and plant built by Osisko Mining Corp. began commercial production in May 2011. In June 2014, Agnico Eagle and Yamana Gold acquired Osisko and created the Canadian Malartic General Partnership that owns and operates the mine. Agnico Eagle and Yamana each have an indirect 50% ownership interest in the Partnership.

7. Penasquito, Mexico. 116 koz.

Penasquito mine, Mexico. Source: Goldcorp.

Newmont’s Peñasquito open-pit polymetallic mine is Mexico’s biggest open pit mine and comprises of two open pits namely Peñasco and Chile Colorado. It is located in the north-eastern corner of the state of Zacatecas, Mexico. The Peñasquito Operations consist of a heap leach gold and silver recovery facility that can process a nominal 25,000 t/d of oxide ore and a sulphide plant that processes a nominal 130,000 t/d of sulphide ore.

8. El Limon Guajes, Mexico. 109 koz.

El Limon Torex
El Limon mine, Mexico. Source: Torex.

Torex Gold’s Morelos Gold Property, an area of 29,000 hectares in the highly prospective Guerrero Gold Belt located 180 kilometers southwest of Mexico City. The Company’s principal assets are the El Limón Guajes mining complex (the “ELG Mine Complex”), comprised of the El Limón, Guajes and El Limón Sur open pits, the El Limón Guajes underground mine including zones referred to as Sub-Sill, El Limón Deep and 71, and the processing plant and related infrastructure, which is in the commercial production stage as of April 1, 2016, and the Media Luna deposit, which is an early stage development project, and for which the Company issued a preliminary economic assessment in September of 2018. The property remains 75% unexplored.

9. Round Mountain, USA. 84 koz.

Round Mountain mine, USA. Source: Flickr

Kinross’ Round Mountain is an open-pit mine located in Nevada, one of the best mining jurisdictions in the world. Round Mountain poured its 15 millionth ounce in 2018 and is nearing completion of its Phase W expansion.

10. Brucejack, Canada. 83 koz.

Brucejack mine. Source: Pretium.

The Brucejack Mine is a high-grade gold underground mine located in northwestern British Columbia, approximately 65 kilometers north of Stewart. A year-round, all-weather access road connects the mine to Highway 37. The mine’s operations and camps are fully grid-powered, with diesel backup available. The mine began commercial operation in July 2017.

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