TORONTO, Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ - Augusta Resource Corporation (TSX: AZC) (NYSE: AZC) ("Augusta" or "the Company") announces a permitting update on its Rosemont Copper project following an information session held today by the U.S. Forest Service (USFS).
The USFS has indicated that the permitting process is approximately 90% complete and three major items need to be completed for the last milestone which is the issuance of the final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD). The three items include: the consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service which is nearing completion; the consultation with tribes and the State Historic Preservation Office of which the draft Memorandum of Agreement is under review; and, an update of air quality models which will be submitted this month. With the issuance of the final Air Quality Permit by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), which is expected by the end of 2012, Rosemont will be deemed to be in compliance with the required federal and state air regulations.
Augusta has reviewed the work that still needs to be completed with the USFS, and expects that the process for the issuance of the final EIS and ROD can be concluded within 60 to 120 days.
In addition, the issuance of the Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) section 404 permit is also required for the construction and operation of Rosemont. The 404 permit can be done concurrently or subsequently to the final EIS and ROD.Gil Clausen, Augusta's President and CEO said, "The USFS has been working diligently and we are confident that as we are near completion, they will continue to manage the process closely so all permits required will be received in the first quarter of next year. We are also pleased to see the USFS referring to working towards the issuance of Rosemont's final EIS, thereby mitigating any belief that a supplemental report is required." ABOUT AUGUSTA Augusta is a base metals company focused on advancing the Rosemont Copper deposit near Tucson, Arizona. Rosemont hosts a large copper/molybdenum reserve that would account for about 10% of US copper output once in production (for details refer to www.augustaresource.com). The exceptional experience and strength of Augusta's management team, combined with the developed infrastructure and robust economics of the Rosemont project, propels Augusta to becoming a solid mid-tier copper producer. The Company trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the NYSE MKT under the symbol AZC.