PEN 6.45% 16.5¢ peninsula energy limited

uranez receives draft eis from nrc

  1. 1,069 Posts.
    Nice to see another Wyoming ISR miner successfully negotiating the hurdles on the way to Permitting.

    Uranerz Receives Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Nichols Ranch Project
    by Sam Kiri

    Those in the mining business would vouch that getting approvals from various government authorities in the US is a matter of considerable challenge. Environmental concerns, regulatory red tape and bureaucracy tend to make the approval process lengthy and arduous. Toronto, US and Frankfurt listed Uranerz Energy Corporation (NYSE Amex: URZ; TSX: URZ; Frankfurt: U9E) in that sense has achieved a major milestone when it received the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the companys Nichols Ranch ISR Uranium Project.

    Uranerz announced that the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission ("NRC") has issued a draft EIS for the Company's Nichols Ranch ISR Uranium Project in Campbell and Johnson Counties, Wyoming, U.S.A. This draft EIS is issued as a "Supplement to the Generic Environmental Impact Statement for In-Situ Leach Uranium Milling Facilities" and marks a significant progress in the application process for a Source Material License. Obtaining the Source Material License, which allows the Company to receive, possess, use, transfer, and deliver radioactive materials, is required before an in-situ recovery ("ISR") uranium mine can be constructed and operated.

    The NRC has confirmed in the Preliminary Recommendation that there is no significant environmental impact in issuing a source material license for the proposed Nichols Ranch ISR Project. The NRC staff has concluded that the overall benefits of the proposed action outweigh the environmental disadvantages and costs as the potential impacts to all environmental resource areas are to be small. There were no findings in the draft EIS of "large" environmental impacts associated with the Nichols Ranch ISR Uranium Project.

    The receipt of approval is indeed a significant development as it would enable Uranerz continue with its development efforts. NRC follows the recent issuance of the Air Quality Permit, thus moving the construction phase at Nichols Ranch closer to fruition. According to George Hartman, Chief Operating Officer for Uranerz, design of the facility is approximately 90% complete and equipment orders for long lead-time items may begin as early as 1Q2010.

    Uranerz has also undertaken considerable development work on its other projects in the Powder River Basin, Wyoming. A total of 315 uranium trend and delineation holes were drilled on the Arkose Mining Venture properties ("Arkose"), a joint venture between the Company (81%) and United Nuclear, LLC (19%) during 2009 drill programme. Drilling on the Arkose property was conducted at the North Jane, Little Butte, Beecher Draw, Lone Bull, and South Doughstick extension properties. Six monitor wells were also drilled and installed at the Hank property.

    At the North Jane property, located southeast of the Uranerz Doughstick area, 20 additional holes were drilled with excellent results in the 100 Sand horizon. The North Jane area is part of the Arkose properties and is adjacent to the trend located at the Company's 100%-owned Doughstick property. A combined National Instrument 43-101 technical report is currently in progress for both the Uranerz Doughstick and the Arkose North Jane properties.

    At the Little Butte and Beecher Draw properties, 185 exploration holes were drilled; only minor mineralization was found in the 90 Sand at these locations. Drilling was also conducted in the Lone Bull property which is located 5 miles southwest of South Doughstick. Drilling was also conducted along the South Doughstick extension located one mile south of the primary South Doughstick trend. A total of 66 holes were drilled with good results along 5,000 feet of mineralized trend. In addition, 11 delineation holes were drilled at South Doughstick to investigate the development of sands below the primary mineralized host sandstone.

    Uranerz is clearly making rapid headway with its development endeavours. Following the receipt of the EIS heightened development activities are expected at the Nichols Ranch project as well. The company has an ambitious development programme for 2010 aimed to generate data for permitting and eventual production operations in favourably identified areas. The companys assets are flanked by properties owned by majors such as Cemeco and Areva thus providing considerable comfort. With some $29 million in the treasury, Uranerz is well-financed to undertake its development programme for 2010.

    About Uranerz
    Uranerz Energy Corporation is a U.S.-based uranium company focused on achieving commercial ISR uranium production. The Company controls a strategic land position in the Pumpkin Buttes Uranium Mining District of the central Powder River Basin of Wyoming, U.S.A. The Uranerz management team has specialized expertise in the ISR uranium mining method, and a record of licensing, constructing, and operating commercial ISR uranium projects. The Company has entered into long-term contracts for the sale of uranium to two of the largest nuclear utilities in the U.S., including Exelon.

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