The Church Rock Royalty was created pursuant to a royalty deed between Hydro Resources, Inc. and Uranium Resources, Inc. (now Westwater Resources Inc. ("Westwater")) dated January 5, 2017. Hydro Resources, Inc. was acquired by Laramide Resources Ltd. ("Laramide") from Westwater on January 5, 2017. The Church Rock Project is a Development stage, ISR uranium project located in the Grants Mineral Belt of New Mexico, USA, 12 miles north-northeast of Gallup, New Mexico. Laramide has disclosed that the Church Rock Project and nearby properties represent one of the largest and highest grade undeveloped ISR uranium projects in the United States. In addition to the Church Rock Royalty, Laramide has disclosed that portions of the Church Rock Project are subject to royalties, including a sliding scale royalty of 5% to 25% held by Laramide.
Laramide has disclosed that it holds several regulatory clearances in connection with the Church Rock Project, including: (a) a final environmental impact statement prepared by the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (the "NRC") in connection with the United States Bureau of Land Management and the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs, dated February of 1997; (b) a radioactive materials license from the NRC, issued in 1998 and amended in 2006 and in "timely renewal"; (c) an aquifer exemption issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, dated 1989; and (d) a water rights transfer, approved by the office of the New Mexico State Engineer, dated October 19, 1999. The Church Rock Technical Report(1) disclosed additional regulatory clearances necessary for the project, including, among others, a discharge permit / underground injection control permit from the New Mexico Environmental Department and a right-of-way permit from the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs or the Navajo Nation.
The information below regarding project milestones and recent developments for the Church Rock Project has been summarized from the Church Rock Technical Report(1), a copy of which is available under Laramide's profile on SEDAR (www.sedar.com), and from Laramide's public disclosure.
The history of exploration and mine development activities for the project date back to the late 1950s. Drilling on the property commenced in 1957 by Phillips Petroleum and continued intermittently until the early 1990s by various contractors on various sections across the project. Mine development activities at the Section 17 property at the Church Rock Project were conducted in the early 1960s by Phillips Petroleum and in the early 1980s by United Nuclear Corporation. The Old Church Rock Mine, which occupied a portion of Section 17 of the project, produced uranium between 1958 and 1963, when it was shut down due to declines in the price of uranium. The majority of the exploration drilling on the property was completed during the 1960s and 1970s.
Exploration and development activities continued through the early 1990s by Uranium Resources, Inc. In 2004, Strathmore Minerals Corp. acquired the Church Rock Project. Strathmore Minerals Corp. was subsequently acquired by Energy Fuels Inc. in 2013. Energy Fuels Inc. transferred the property to Uranium Resources, Inc. in 2015, prior to the property being acquired by Laramide in early 2017.
Laramide filed the Church Rock Technical Report(1) in November 2017. The Church Rock Technical Report(1) included an inferred mineral resource estimate of 50.82 mmlb of U3O8 (33.88 million short tons or 30.73 million tonnes at a grade of 0.075% U3O8). In January of 2018, Laramide disclosed plans to commence core drilling and leach-restoration testing, complete an updated mineral resource estimate based on such additional exploration work, and complete a preliminary economic assessment for the Church Rock Project. Laramide has disclosed that planned drilling and leach-restoration work will allow it to satisfy the New Mexico Environment Department's groundwater discharge plan requirements whereby it must demonstrate in a laboratory environment the ability, post-leaching, to restore groundwater in the mining aquifer to an acceptable level.
Technical Report on the Church Rock Uranium Project, McKinley County, State of New Mexico, U.S.A. with an effective date of September 30, 2017, prepared for Laramide and authored by Mark B. Mathisen, C.P.G.