Bill Gates-backed mining start-up- KoBold Metals- which uses Artifical Intelligence (AI) to explore for materials essential to the green-energy transition, said that it has discovered a huge copper deposit in Zambia. KoBold president Josh Goldman said that Mingomba is shaping up to be “extraordinary” as he compared its potential to that of Kakula mine- developed by Ivanhoe Mines Ltd. and China’s Zijin Mining Group Co in Democratic Republic of Congo. Kakula mine produced almost 400,000 tons of copper last year.
“The story with Mingomba is that it’s like Kakula in both the size and the grade” Josh Goldman said, adding, “It’s going to be one of the highest grade, large underground mines.”
How was the drilling done in Zambia?
San Francisco Bay Area-based KoBold has been drilling at its Zambian permit for a little over a year as the company targets its first output early next decade. It still has not published an updated resource estimate and complete feasibility studies which will inform the decision on whether to build a facility which could cost $2 billion.
KoBold’s shareholders include Breakthrough Energy Ventures – backed by Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and other billionaires. T. Rowe Price Group Inc., Bond Capital, Andreesen Horowitz and Equinor ASA are also on board.
KoBold isn’t worrying about the low prices currently wreaking havoc with some battery metal projects, the company president said, asserting, “We capitalize the company to be able to make long-term investments. We care enormously what the price of these commodities is in 2035 and we don’t care what it is in 2024.”
What we know about Mingomba project?
Mingomba is the most advanced project in KoBold’s portfolio. The company is also exploring more than 60 other areas and much of the activity centered on Australia, Canada and the US. The firm announced earlier that it had discovered several lithium deposits in locations including Namibia, Quebec and Nevada.
Last year, the company spent close to $100 million on exploration last year and expects to exceed that figure in 2024.
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