Pele’s flagship property is its 100-percent owned Eco Ridge Mine Rare Earths and Uranium Project. Eco Ridge is located in Elliot Lake, Ontario, a proven mining camp with historic production exceeding 300-million pounds of uranium oxide and the only mining camp in Canada to have achieved commercial production of rare earth oxides. Elliot Lake has outstanding regional infrastructure including highways, railway, electricity, natural gas, airport, deep-water ports, and a qualified workforce.
As recent market conditions for rare earths and uranium have not supported the construction of relatively high production, high CAPEX mining and processing projects like Eco Ridge, Pele recently expanded its business model to include processing high-grade rare earth bearing monazite in Elliot Lake. Management believes that Monazite Processing will help Pele win the race to production of critical rare earths and, ultimately, will support the development of Eco Ridge as market conditions improve.
In June 2013, Pele announced an updated NI 43-101 Mineral Resource Estimate for Eco Ridge along with an Economic Review of the project, providing an updated sensitivity analysis on the 2012 Preliminary Economic Assessment. The Economic Review concluded that the increased resource will extend mine life, forecasting production at 141.6-million pounds of rare earth oxides and 42.7-million pounds of uranium oxide during the first 14 years of the mine life. Uranium revenue is forecast to exceed operating costs for the first five years of production and thereafter to offset the majority of operating costs, potentially reducing financial risks associated with rare earth production. The PEA and subsequent Economic Review demonstrate that Eco Ridge has excellent economic potential to produce uranium, critical rare earths, including scandium.
Uranium minerals are the major mineral sources for heavy rare earths at Eco Ridge, allowing for excellent recovery. The Project has no known environmental liabilities and enjoys enthusiastic local support. The Province of Ontario has already granted two renewable 21-year Mining Leases at Eco Ridge, giving Pele the exclusive right to mine the deposit. Pele is transparent about its plans for the safe disposal of radioactive waste products as backfill underground at the mine site.
Pele’s world-class development team is led by Pele’s Executive Vice-President, Roger Payne P. Eng., who was the former General Manager for Rio Algom in Elliot Lake, and includes RPA, SENES Consultants Limited, and Golder Associates Ltd., all of which have extensive and relevant experience in Elliot Lake from the camp’s productive years.
Pele places great value on Community Relations and has prioritized constructive dialogue with local stakeholders since becoming active in Elliot Lake in 2006. Pele has received Letters of Support from the Municipal, Provincial, and Federal Governments and recently underscored its commitment to work with First Nations with its appointment of Martin Cooper as Vice-President of Aboriginal Affairs. Pele seeks to provide long-term benefits to the regional community through responsible, sustainable development.
Note: The PEA is preliminary in nature. It includes inferred mineral resources, which are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as mineral reserves and there is no certainty that the preliminary economic assessment will be realized.