VANCOUVER, British Columbia, April 10, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has projected that global energy use will increase 56% in the next 30 years.
Until we can economically harness the power of the tides, nuclear energy is destined to be the world's environmental saviour.
Where will we get our uranium?
"In the future, the Athabasca Basin will be the biggest source of uranium for the whole world," stated Uranium Guru Thomas Drolet in a recent interview with Financial Press.
In 2013, Azincourt (TSX-V:AAZ) formed a joint venture with the Athabasca Basin's leading exploration company, Fission Uranium to explore the highly prospective Patterson Lake North (PLN) property.
Last month, David A. Talbot, a senior uranium analyst with Dundee Capital Markets, initiated coverage on Azincourt with a "BUY, Venture Risk, No Target."
"We believe that investors should buy Azincourt Uranium for its prospectivity in the Athabasca Basin," wrote Talbot. "It's our opinion that PLN represents a top three location in the PLS discovery area, and this new player has one of the best technical teams drilling the ground."
PLN is adjacent to Fission Uranium's shallow depth, high-grade uranium discovery at Patterson Lake South. Fission Uranium's spin out company, Fission 3.0 is the new partner and operator on this project, with the same technical and management team as Fission Uranium.
"Azincourt will spend $12 million to earn a 50% interest on the Patterson Lake North Project (PLN)," stated Ian Stalker, Azincourt Chairman and Director in an exclusive interview with Financial Press. "This property is one that Fission Uranium picked up on the western site of the Athabasca basin in 2004 long before the land rush that followed the PLS discovery. It was acquired because of its potential for uranium mineralisation."
Fission has made two major discoveries in the Athabasca Basin in the past 4 years and Fission's Chief Geo, Ross McElroy has been instrumental in 4 of last 9 major discoveries in the area.
"Fission Uranium liked PLN for technical reasons," states Stalker, "They spent about $5 million proving up several targets. But before they could go any further, they had success at the J-Zone and then this incredible success with PLS - literally a stone's throw away. You can stand at our border and see their drills turning."
"Once you have the tiger by the tail, there is no point in letting it go. Fission Uranium just kept on drilling on PLS, which has ended up being one of the best recent discoveries in the Athabasca basin."
A year ago, Stalker set out to recruit a tenacious CEO who had the ability to drive a junior uranium company forward in a challenging market.
"I was fortunate to find Ted O'Connor who had been working for Cameco assessing projects around the globe," stated Stalker, "Ted was the perfect hands-on executive to manage the joint venture in the Athabasca basin – and our operations in Peru."
Azincourt also has a 100% interest in a uranium project in the rapidly emerging Macusani region of Peru. The previous operator Minergia spent $12 million proving a considerable resource for discovery costs of just $.40 a pound. Through some savvy deal-making, AAZ acquired the resource for $.06 a pound.
The Macusani asset has an NI 43-101 compliant U3O8 resource of 5.7 million pounds in the measured category, 12.5 million pounds indicated, 17.4 million pounds inferred – with a cut-off of 90.72 ppm (0.18 pounds/ton). Cash operating costs for other projects on the Macusani Plateau have been projected to average $20.57/lb U3O8.
"Our challenges in Peru are fairly straight forward," stated Stalker. "Peru has a mature mining culture and we are 100% owner of the property. There is no direct government ownership so that simplifies everything."
"Its Peruvian pounds give Azincourt optionality in a rising uranium price environment," stated the Dundee Research Report.
"We have been extremely busy with corporate activity in Peru and we haven't aggressively marketed our NI 43-101 compliant pounds in the ground," stated Stalker, "The fact is, the Peruvian numbers look very encouraging even in a depressed uranium market."
Investors may not have the bandwidth to absorb a blue-sky story in the Athabasca Basin and a quick-to-production story in Peru. Like other companies with an embarrassment of riches, we may see Azincourt split into two companies which would likely benefit existing shareholders. Stalker acknowledges that there are formidable communications challenges operating two projects on two different continents.
"We have completed about 2000 meters of drilling in the Athabasca Basin at PLN," stated Stalker, "The prospectivity of the targets tested this winter was confirmed with the drill intersecting identical looking graphitic rocks, structure and alteration as those found along the now famous PLS discovery trend. Our latest financing ensures we will be able to drill through this summer/fall season on our previously identified targets. Based on the encouraging geology and quality target inventory, we do not wish to wait until next winter. We are going to try to proceed now testing targets that we've already developed."
According to the World Nuclear Association, Global uranium demand will rise 48% by 2023.
China has 28 reactors under construction with five scheduled to be connected to the grid in 2014. After much hand-wringing, Japan has applied for 17 of the 48 shuttered reactors to be restarted.
Azincourt is currently trading at .21 with a market capitalisation of $10.1 million.
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CONTACT: Azincourt Uranium Inc. (TSX-V:AAZ) Suite 800 - 789 W.Pender Street Vancouver, B.C. V6C 1H2 Toll-Free: 1-855-237-6274 Phone: 604-662-4955 Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgSource:Azincourt Uranium Inc.