Toronto: Underground Mining – the Difference Between Optimal and Real

January 25, 2017 all-day
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
Bay Adelaide Centre
East Tower, 22 Adelaide Street West, 34th floor

For its Wednesday, January 25th meeting, the Toronto Discussion Group of CIM’s Management and Economics Society is pleased to welcome:

Paul Tim Whillans

Principal, Whillans Mine Studies Ltd.

who will deliver a presentation on:

Underground Mining: the Difference Between Optimal and Real


Abstract: An underground mining study compliant with NI43-101, JORC or similar reporting code is generally assumed by the public to be representative, independent and impartial. However, it has been well documented by academics and professionals in our industry that there is a sharp difference between forecasts presented in these underground studies and the actual costs when a mine is put into production. For underground mines, the risks associated with obtaining representative information are much greater than for surface mining and the cost of accessing underground ore is also proportionally much greater. There is a pressing need to align expectations, by improving the accuracy of projections leading to reduced risk to mining companies and investors and provide more reliable information to government agencies, the public, and more importantly, the communities in which the proposed mine will operate. The presentation will cover:

  • Reasons studies tend toward over optimism
  • Simple tools to identify which studies are likely to be more closely aligned with reality
  • Specific points where underground mining studies are generally weak
  • Practices currently in use that lead to a composite or aggregate effect of over optimism
  • Effects of overly optimistic studies
  • Specific changes necessary to overcome these challenges; and
  • Discussion and awareness with participants leading to better standards


BIO: Paul Tim Whillans is a consultant for underground mining and is based in Vancouver. He has been in the industry for 35 years working almost exclusively with underground mines. Recently, he was General Manager of Operations for Mubadala´s Gold Project in Colombia. He performs due diligence studies, operating improvement advice and audits, and has worked extensively in Latin America. Paul is currently writing additional articles on:

  • Mining Dilution and mineral losses
  • Alternative economic models for mining
  • Contingency what is it?

He also dedicates his volunteer time to welcoming refugees in Vancouver.


Please join us!


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Refreshments at 4:15pm – Presentation at 4:35pm


Borden Ladner Gervais LLP

Bay Adelaide Centre, East Tower
22 Adelaide Street West, 34th floor, Toronto


Seminar is complimentary and seats are limited. Register by Monday, January 23 to secure your place. Please RSVP by replying to if you are interested in attending. This is also an excellent networking opportunity and there is no charge to attend.


Thank you to our sponsor, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, for providing the space.


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