Department of Defense issues $24.8 million critical minerals award to Perpetua Resources

December 19, 2022

Perpetua Resources has been awarded the first critical minerals award from the Defense Production Act (DPA) Investments Program and the Air Force Executive Agent. The award was issued using Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations to secure an American source of critical minerals for missiles and munitions.

The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), reported that the DPA Investments Program will provide $24.8 million to Perpetua to complete environmental and engineering studies necessary to obtain a Final Environmental Impact Statement, a Final Record of Decision, and other ancillary permits. Perpetua will perform this study work related to its Stibnite-Gold Project in central Idaho through 2024.

This investment is essential to ensure the timely development of a domestic source of antimony trisulfide for the manufacture of small arms and medium caliber cartridges, as well as many other missile and munition items.

Perpetua wrote in a press release that antimony trisulfide is essential to national defense as a key component for munitions yet there is no U.S. mined supply. Perpetua plans to re-establish a domestic supply of the critical mineral antimony as a by-product of one of the highest-grade openpit gold resources in the United States. The DPA funding allows the company to advance the construction readiness of the Stibnite Gold Project while the company continues through the ongoing permitting process, led by the United States Forest Service.

Under the funding agreement, Perpetua may request reimbursement for certain costs incurred over 24 months related to environmental baseline data monitoring, environmental and technical studies and other activities related to advancing Perpetua’s construction readiness and permitting process for the Stibnite Gold Project. The DPA funding does not interrupt the ongoing National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process. The DPA award is separate from the previously announced Small Business Innovation Research Phase 1 funding awarded to Perpetua by the Defense Logistics Agency in September 2022.

“As Perpetua continues advancing our project through the permitting process, we are honored to enter this agreement to help advance our construction readiness for future development,” said Laurel Sayer, President and CEO of Perpetua Resources. “Our vision remains unchanged, which is to redevelop a world class gold deposit, provide the country with a critical mineral, and restore an abandoned brownfield site. Today, we continue to build momentum towards turning our vision into a reality.”

“The Department’s DPA Investments Program is delivering on its core mission to restore domestic industrial capabilities essential to the national defense by enabling the warfighter,” said Halimah Najieb-Locke, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Industrial Base Resilience. “This action reinforces the Administration’s goals to increase the resilience of our critical mineral supply chains while deterring adversarial aggression.”
Perpetua’s Stibnite-Gold Project produced antimony trisulfide for the U.S. ammunition industrial base during World War II and the Korean War, and it is the sole domestic geologic reserve of antimony that can meet DoD requirements.

The Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Perpetua’s Stibnite-Gold Project currently is in a 75-day public comment period that ends on January 10, 2023. This award does not interrupt the ongoing National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process, nor does a DPA Investment confer any right or benefit through the permitting process.

 Photo: Shutterstock


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