Virginia City, NV (January 19, 2012) — Comstock Mining Inc. (the “Company”) (NYSE Amex: LODE) announced today that the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) has issued a Reclamation Permit (No. 0315) authorizing exploration drilling for the Company’s two major targets in Lyon County, the Dayton Resource Area and the Spring Valley Area. Together with the Special Use Permit issued by Storey County in October of 2011, the receipt of this latest permit is the last permit authorization needed for the Company’s proposed drilling programs.
As a condition of both permits, soil assessments will commence this week to determine the levels of the EPA-identified Contaminants of Concern in areas around historic mill sites and tailings. The program will be conducted in compliance with a sampling and analysis plan recently approved by NDEP’s Bureau of Corrective Action. The purpose of this program is to ascertain any actual levels of contamination and potentially remove these sites from the Carson River Mercury Superfund Site (CRMS) designation. Initial testing should allow site-specific exploration operations to begin in our Lucerne Resource Area in early February. The Company will actually commence 2012 exploration activities on January 23, 2012, in our Spring Valley Target Area on areas outside of the CRMS designation.
“Last year we validated 2.4 million ounces of gold and over 20 million ounces of silver,” stated Corrado De Gasperis, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer. “This represented the most efficient drilling program in our history, with a discovery cost of just $6 per gold-equivalent resource ounce, and identified higher grade, robust potential in both our Dayton and East-side Lucerne Areas. These new permits and the completion of the prerequisite soil sampling allows for the expansion and acceleration of these programs in 2012 and beyond.”
The newly issued Reclamation Permit was posted on December 20th, 2011, at (http://ndep.nv.gov/comstock/docs/permit_0315_final_decision_122011.pdf), and became effective December 31st, 2011. This permit authorizes exploration drilling in Lyon County, including the next phase of in-fill drilling for the Dayton Resource Area and the first phase of exploration in the Spring Valley Area. The permit is not impacted by an appeal that was filed with the Nevada State Environmental Commission.
The 2012 Drilling program will initially focus on three significant areas: 1) Definition drilling in the Lucerne starter mine area; 2) Multiple Phases of drilling in the East-Side of the Lucerne Resource Area; and 3) in-fill drilling in the Dayton Resource Area. The 2012 drilling is designed to obtain the necessary information to develop economic mine plans. In the Lucerne, that mine plan will likely expand the currently permitted boundaries of the starter mine already scheduled for production in 2012. In the Dayton, a second mine plan will be evaluated for potential parallel development.
The program will also verify the continuity of the geologic model southward into predominantly unexplored sections of the Comstock District, mainly in the Spring Valley Area. The drilling follows-up on the Company’s previously announced discovery hole (SV09-05) that intersected 0.157 ounce gold per ton from 40 to 85 feet of depth. The goal of the program will be to provide information accessing the potential of this additional Resource Area.
The exploration programs will build upon the findings reported in the Company’s latest 43-101 Technical Report (“The 2011 Report”). The 2011 Report affirmed a mineral resource estimate for the Comstock Mine Project in Storey and Lyon Counties, Nevada, of measured and indicated resources containing 1,780,000 gold equivalent ounces and an estimate of an inferred resource containing an additional 990,000 gold equivalent ounces. The total of 2,770,000 measured, indicated, and inferred gold equivalent ounces was a 94% increase over the estimate in the Company’s previous NI 43-101 technical report, published in August 2010. The 2011 Report also includes an additional 200,000 gold equivalent ounces outside of the modeled area, in the Historical Resource Category.
About Comstock Mining Inc.
Comstock Mining Inc. is a Nevada-based gold and silver mining company with extensive, contiguous property in the Comstock District. The Company began acquiring properties in the Comstock District in 2003. Since then, the Company has consolidated a significant portion of the Comstock District, amassed the single largest known repository of historical and current geological data on the Comstock region, secured permits, built an infrastructure and brought the exploration project into test mining production. The Company continues acquiring additional properties in the district, expanding its footprint and creating opportunities for exploration and mining. The goal of its strategic plan is to deliver stockholder value by validating qualified resources (at least measured and indicated) and reserves (probable and proven) of 3,250,000 gold equivalent ounces by 2013, and commencing commercial mining and processing operations with annual production rates of 20,000 gold equivalent ounces.
This press release and any related calls or discussions may contain forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include statements about matters such as: future prices and sales of and demand for our products; future industry market conditions; future changes in our exploration activities, production capacity and operations; future exploration, production, operating and overhead costs; operational and management restructuring activities (including implementation of methodologies and changes in the board of directors); future employment and contributions of personnel; tax and interest rates; capital expenditures and their impact on us; nature, timing and accounting for restructuring charges, gains or losses on debt extinguishment, derivative liabilities and the impact thereof; productivity, business process, rationalization, restructuring, investment, acquisition, consulting, operational, tax, financial and capital projects and initiatives; contingencies; environmental compliance and changes in the regulatory environment; offerings, sales and other actions regarding debt or equity securities; and future working capital, costs, revenues, business opportunities, debt levels, cash flows, margins, earnings and growth.
The words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “project,” “plan,” “should,” “intend,” “may,” “will,” “would,” “potential” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements, but are not the exclusive means of doing so. These statements are based on assumptions and assessments made by our management in light of their experience and their perception of historical and current trends, current conditions, possible future developments and other factors they believe to be appropriate. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees, representations or warranties and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, developments and business decisions to differ materially from those contemplated by such forward-looking statements. Some of those risks and uncertainties include the risk factors set forth in our SEC filings and the following: the current global economic and capital market uncertainties; the speculative nature of gold or mineral exploration, including risks of diminishing quantities or grades of qualified resources and reserves; operational or technical difficulties in connection with exploration or mining activities; contests over our title to properties; potential dilution to our stockholders from our recapitalization and balance sheet restructuring activities; potential inability to continue to comply with government regulations; adoption of or changes in legislation or regulations adversely affecting our businesses; business opportunities that may be presented to or pursued by us; changes in the United States or other monetary or fiscal policies or regulations; interruptions in our production capabilities due to unexpected equipment failures; fluctuation of prices for gold or certain other commodities (such as silver, copper, diesel fuel, and electricity); changes in generally accepted accounting principles; geopolitical events; potential inability to implement our business strategies; potential inability to grow revenues organically; potential inability to attract and retain key personnel; interruptions in delivery of critical supplies and equipment raw materials due to credit or other limitations imposed by vendors; assertion of claims, lawsuits and proceedings against us; potential inability to maintain an effective system of internal controls over financial reporting; potential inability or failure to timely file periodic reports with the SEC; potential inability to list our securities on any securities exchange or market; and work stoppages or other labor difficulties. Occurrence of such events or circumstances could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations or cash flows or the market price of our securities. All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements by or attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by these factors. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement.
Neither this press release nor any related calls or discussions constitutes an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities.
Contact information for Comstock Mining Inc.:
P.O. Box 1118
Virginia City, NV 89440
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
Tel (775) 847-7376
Tel (416) 238-1414 x233
 Gold equivalent ounces were calculated using September 30, 2011 London PM prices of $1,620.00 per ounce of gold and $30.45 per ounce of silver, as published by kitco.com. This resulted in a ratio of 53.20 ounces of silver per equivalent ounce of gold, without taking into consideration the relative recoveries of gold and silver.