Energy Fuels Inc. has entered into a letter of intent to acquire approximately 4,580 acres of properties adjacent to the Roca Honda uranium project in the Grants mineral district of New Mexico from Uranium Resources Inc. The Roca Honda project is owned by Roca Honda Resources LLC, a 60:40 joint venture between Energy Fuels and Sumitomo Corp.
In exchange for the properties, Uranium Resources will receive $2.5 million in cash, $375,000 in Energy Fuels common shares, and certain other considerations. Upon completion of the acquisition, Energy Fuels will transfer the acquired properties to Roca Honda Resources and receive compensation from Sumitomo for its share of the acquisition costs.
The acquired properties include fee mineral ownership of 640 acres, fee ownership of 36 unpatented lode mining claims, and a leasehold interest on 131 unpatented lode mining claims. The properties contain significant historical uranium resources, additional exploration potential, and some existing mine development infrastructure that has the potential to be utilized.
Under the existing Roca Honda project base-case scenario described in a February 2015 preliminary economic assessment, the project is expected to have a nine-year mine life, producing an average of approximately 2.6 million lb/y of U3O8, with processing to take place at Energy Fuels’ White Mesa mill in southeast Utah. The acquired properties have the potential to add to the project’s uranium resources, increase its mine life, and provide use of an existing, partially finished mine shaft constructed by Kerr-McGee in 1982 to a depth of 1,478 ft.
Energy Fuels CEO Stephen P. Antony said, “Roca Honda is truly a flagship U.S. uranium project. Our transaction with Uranium Resources will significantly increase the size of the project and has the potential to make the project economics even more attractive through increased uranium resources, additional exploration, and possible use of the existing historic mine shaft.”