Encouragingly, that collaboration will continue into the future. Fronk said, "training of local groups is important to us in terms of being able to attract as much qualified, skilled labor as we can locally. We're already on that in terms of education we're supporting in the region." Continuing, he noted, "[KSM] will be one of the largest mines ever built in Canada. It's going to employ thousands of people during the construction phase, and well over a thousand when we're in operation. It's a mine life that'll extend, right now with known reserves, in excess of 50 years."Ready to meet challenges KSM may be looking good in light of the Imperial Metals' accident, but that hasn't stopped some market watchers from worrying it will suffer the same roadblocks as Northern Dynasty Minerals' (TSX:NDM,NYSEMKT:NAK) Pebble project in Southwest Alaska. Fronk, however, was quick to shut down that line of thought. "There are no comparisons," he said. "Canada has a well-defined environmental approval process that we've been in now since 2008. We've gone through the process with regulators, and they've come out and concluded that as designed, the project will not have a material adverse impact on the environment. It's two different countries with two different approval processes." He added, "we also have the support of the local aboriginal people and the local community. You can't say the same for the Pebble project." That said, he realizes that Seabridge is likely to face opposition in the 30-day comment period that's just opened up. "When you design a mine the size of KSM there will always be people that are against the project," he explained. Even so, Fronk isn't too worried. "At the end of the day, we've done our work, we've done it properly and the proof will be in the pudding when we get the official approval," he said.
Moving forward, investors can expect to see Seabridge search for a partner to fund KSM. That may prove tough given that Fronk believes there are probably only "10 companies or less in the world that can build and operate a mine of [its] size." However, he sees the task being easier now that Seabridge has an Environmental Assessment Certificate in hand.At close of day Friday, shares of Seabridge were selling for $10.53 each. Securities Disclosure: I, Charlotte McLeod, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article. Seabridge Gold's Rudi Fronk Talks KSM Mine Approval from Gold Investing News