Friday 23rd October 2020

Resource Clips

Athabasca Basin and beyond

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Energy Fuels updates La Sal resource, releases Juniper Ridge PEA, files $100-million prospectus

A late-night March 28 communique from Energy Fuels TSX:EFR reported resource updates for its La Sal and Juniper Ridge projects, as well as a preliminary economic assessment for Juniper Ridge.

The La Sal complex in Utah now shows:

  • measured and indicated: 1.14 million tons averaging 0.18% U3O8 and 0.94% V2O5 for 4.1 million pounds uranium and 21.5 million pounds vanadium

  • inferred: 200,000 tons averaging 0.1% U3O8 and 0.51% V2O5 for 400,000 pounds uranium and 1.9 million pounds vanadium

The M&I total increased by about 2.7 million pounds uranium and 15.5 million pounds vanadium. La Sal consists of a number of former mines along a 17.6-kilometre trend, some of which can return to production “with minimal time or cost, as uranium market conditions warrant,” the company stated.

The Juniper Ridge resource in Wyoming now shows:

  • indicated: 5.2 million tons averaging 0.06% eU3O8 for 6.1 million pounds uranium

  • inferred: 107,000 tons averaging 0.09% eU3O8 for 182,000 pounds uranium
Uranium news from Saskatchewan and elsewhere for March 29 to April 4, 2014

Energy Fuels’ La Sal complex in Utah consists of
former mines, some of which are on standby for
near-term production.

The update increases the resource nearly 20%, Energy Fuels stated.

The PEA assumes a uranium price of $65 a pound throughout the proposed mine’s 10-year lifespan. Using an 8% discount rate, the after-tax net present value comes to $21.3 million and the internal rate of return 22%. Initial capex would come to $37.5 million. Production would just surpass 500,000 pounds U3O8 annually over a decade at an open pit operation with heap leach recovery. Final processing would take place at the company’s White Mesa mill in Utah, the only conventional uranium plant operating in the U.S.

Energy Fuels also filed a preliminary base shelf prospectus so it “may issue common shares, warrants, subscription receipts, preferred shares, debt securities or any combination of such securities” for a total up to US$100 million during a 25-month period.

Fission 3.0/Azincourt report winter work at PLN

On April 2 Fission 3.0 TSXV:FUU and Azincourt Uranium TSXV:AAZ reported results from winter drilling, a radon survey and ground geophysics at their PLS-adjacent PLN JV. Seven holes totalling 1,988 metres tested three basement electromagnetic conductors without encountering radioactivity. But “encouraging basement lithology and structural features confirm the high prospectivity of the target areas,” the companies stated.

Poor ice conditions prevented drilling on the 27,408-hectare property’s southern lake targets. The companies are evaluating winter data to set priorities for a future drill campaign.

The previous week Fission 3 filed a 43-101 technical report for its North Shore project. The Fission Energy spinco holds a portfolio of nine Saskatchewan and Alberta properties in and around the Basin, and another in Peru.

Azincourt, which is earning a 50% interest in its PLN flagship, has also acquired properties in Peru’s Macusani region. On April 1 the company reported closing a private placement for $1.66 million.

Alpha explores radioactive Donna zone at Middle/Skull Lake

Alpha Exploration TSXV:AEX might not always agree with its partners about the names of their projects, but it released interesting results from one of them on April 1.

With an 80% interest, the Alpha Minerals spinco refers to this project as Middle Lake. Acme Resources TSXV:ARI (20%) prefers to call it Skull Lake. Radiometric readings from 12 holes showed 10 with anomalous radioactivity. The results, from both a downhole radiometric probe and hand-held scintillometer, require the usual disclaimer that they’re no substitute for assays.

Most holes showed many narrow intercepts above 500 counts per second beginning near surface. The deepest ended at 134.9 metres. Eight holes from the Donna zone provide “an encouraging first step” towards finding the source of an historic boulder field to the southwest.

Donna prompted Alpha to increase its original 20-hole, 2,000-metre program to 31 holes totalling 3,287 metres. The company will choose future targets after reviewing assays and geochemistry.

Drilling found more modest success on the project’s South Grid, where two small intercepts were reported for each of two holes. A third failed to scintillate.

Middle/Skull Lake is one of three Alpha JVs adjacent to the former Cluff Lake mine. The others are Bridle Lake, a 50/50 partnership with Rio Tinto NYE:RIO, and Gorilla Lake, held 80% by Alpha and 20% by Logan Resources TSXV:LGR. Logan calls the project Carswell.

European Uranium/Portex merger falls through, EUU to sell portfolio

Saying the deal “is incapable of performance and is frustrated and of no further force or effect,” European Uranium Resources TSXV:EUU dropped out of its planned merger with Portex Minerals CSE:PAX on April 1. Three days later EUU announced binding heads of agreement with ASX/AIM-listed Forte Energy to sell off EUU’s entire portfolio, consisting of two Slovakian projects. The transaction would fund EUU to pursue other projects “in multiple commodities in the general European area,” the company stated.

With $1 million in cash and 915.93 million Forte shares, EUU values the deal at approximately $8.5 million, representing “a premium approaching 35%” over EUU’s market cap when trading halted in December prior to the initial merger announcement. EUU retains a 1% production royalty.

Forte has also agreed to buy a $100,000 private placement of EUU shares, expected to close within a week.

Anthem reports Hatchet Lake JV drill results

Assays released by Anthem Resources TSXV:AYN on April 3 show polymetallic values along with low-grade uranium at the northeastern Basin’s Hatchet Lake JV. The results follow completion of a 10-hole, 2,025-metre program in which 59% partner Denison acted as operator.

Hole RL-14-19 at Richardson Lake showed:

  • 0.025% U3O8 over 8.5 metres, starting at 124.2 metres in downhole depth

  • (including 0.008% U3O8 and 1.88 grams per tonne gold over 0.5 metres)

  • (and including 0.035% U3O8 and 0.33% copper over 4.5 metres)

  • 0.68% copper over 2 metres, starting at 162.5 metres

RL-14-21A, also at Richardson Lake, showed:

  • 0.026% U3O8 over 1 metre, starting at 121 metres

  • 0.058% U3O8 and 1.1% copper over 5 metres, starting at 125 metres

  • 0.005% U3O8 and 0.21% copper over 5 metres, starting at 130 metres

True widths were unavailable.

Further south, drilling found what Anthem described as “a new zone of possibly stratiform silver-lead-zinc mineralization in graphitic pelite” with hole RL-14-27:

  • 21 g/t silver, 2.24% lead and 0.34% zinc over 15.4 metres, starting at 148 metres

  • (including 19.6 g/t silver, 3.3% lead and 0.27% zinc over 9.6 metres)

  • (which includes 84.4 g/t silver, 12.8% lead and 1.85% zinc over 1.1 metres)

  • (and including 37.9 g/t silver, 0.82% lead and 0.75% zinc over 3.5 metres)

Again, true widths weren’t provided.

Anthem’s lack of contribution to the exploration budget reduced its interest in the project from 50% to 41%. Last month the company announced it would sue British Columbia for committing “de facto expropriation” when it banned uranium exploration. As a significant shareholder in Boss Power TSXV:BPU, Anthem stands to gain from any settlement of the Boss/Beruschi/B.C. dispute.

Majescor closes $189,000 placement, announces new business plan

Having closed a $189,000 private placement two days earlier, Majescor Resources TSXV:MJX announced April 3 it “intends to evaluate new business ventures, including but not limited to opportunities in agriculture, medical, technology, finance, resources and oil and gas.” The company currently holds mineral exploration projects in Haiti and a 40%/60% JV with Strateco Resources TSX:RSC on the Mistassini uranium project in Quebec, which has a moratorium on uranium exploration.

A break in the bitter Boss/Beruschi B.C. battle of the B claims imbroglio

A long, gruelling dispute that has held up a $30-million settlement from the province of British Columbia might finally be coming to an end. A binding letter agreement announced April 1 by Boss Power, Morning Star Resources, Magic Dragon Ventures and Anthony Beruschi “will settle all of the legal disputes between them and complete a divisive reorganization pursuant to a plan of arrangement,” the parties stated.

The $30 million stems from B.C.’s sudden ban on uranium and thorium exploration in 2009. Boss won the out-of-court settlement on the condition that it surrender certain claims to the province. Among them were the B claims, which turned out to be Beruschi’s.

Things got just a wee bit acrimonious.

The climax came in November as the parties went to war over control of Boss’ board, a battle that Boss narrowly won. Now they’ve agreed on a complex deal to divvy up the $30 million, with $3.6 million going to Beruschi, $2.5 million to Boss and the balance going into trust pending the divisive reorganization. Final approval needs the support of Boss security holders, a B.C. court and the TSXV.

The parties provide more details in their April 1 announcement, with additional info coming in the shareholder circular. They expect to close the deal in June.

In brief…

On March 31 Skyharbour Resources TSXV:SYH announced the closing of a private placement for $729,344. Additionally, warrants exercised since the beginning of February have brought in $181,420 for a total of $910,754. Skyharbour is a member of the four-company Western Athabasca Syndicate which last month began drilling its 246,643-hectare PLS-vicinity Preston Lake project.

Cameco will pay $18 million to end its toll conversion agreement with a UK facility, the company stated on March 31. Under the agreement, Springfields Fuels Ltd has been converting uranium trioxide from Cameco’s Blind River refinery to uranium hexafluoride, which is required to produce fuel for light water reactors. Cameco then delivers the UF6 to its customers. “With the current weak market for UF6 conversion we can meet our customer requirements from our Port Hope [Ontario] conversion facility,” said president/CEO Tim Gitzel.

Also on March 31, Laramide Resources TSX:LAM announced the appointment of Bryn Jones as COO. Jones has previously served as managing director of ASX-listed Uranium Equities Ltd and will take charge of Laramide’s flagship Westmoreland project in Queensland. Last month the company announced a one-year extension to a farm-in and JV term sheet on an adjacent property held by a Rio Tinto subsidiary.

On April 1 CanAlaska Uranium TSXV:CVV announced plans to divest its interest in another property. The Kasmere South project in Manitoba goes to the privately held East Resource Ltd for $1.8 million, which CanAlaska stated will help advance its “core Japanese and Korean joint ventures at West MacArthur and Cree East.”

On April 2 Red Rock Energy TSXV:RRK stated it is considering plans that “may include, but are not limited to, the sale of the corporation, merger or other business combination, additional financing [or] sale of all or a portion of the corporation’s assets,” among other possibilities. Red Rock holds 60,581 hectares in northern Saskatchewan’s Uranium City region.

GoviEx Uranium Inc, a privately held explorer with a project in Niger, announced April 2 a preliminary prospectus for an initial public offering on the CSE. The company hopes the IPO will raise at least US$1.5 million at $2.15 a share.

See previous uranium news updates:

Read expert commentary:

Thomas Drolet discusses nuclear power from a global point of view.

Thomas Drolet discusses Fukushima and nuclear energy’s outlook.

Tom Hope discusses uranium’s predicament and promise.

David Talbot discusses the metal’s challenges and potential, and the Athabasca Basin.

Disclaimer: Lakeland Resources Inc is a client of OnPage Media Corp, the publisher of The principals of OnPage Media may hold shares in Lakeland Resources.

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