Metals Update 07/06/2021

OTC Markets Group Welcomes Troilus Gold Corp. to OTCQX

NEW YORK, June 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — OTC Markets Group Inc. (OTCQX: OTCM), operator of financial markets for 11,000 U.S. and global securities, today announced Troilus Gold Corp. (TSX: TLG) (OTCQX: CHXMF), a development-stage gold and copper mining company, has qualified to trade on the OTCQX® Best Market. Troilus Gold Corp. upgraded to OTCQX from the OTCQB® Venture Market.

Troilus Gold Corp. begins trading today on OTCQX under the symbol “CHXMF.” U.S. investors can find current financial disclosure and Real-Time Level 2 quotes for the company on www.otcmarkets.com.

The OTCQX Market is designed for established, investor-focused U.S. and international companies. To qualify for OTCQX, companies must meet high financial standards, follow best practice corporate governance, and demonstrate compliance with applicable securities laws. Graduating to the OTCQX Market marks an important milestone for companies, enabling them to demonstrate their qualifications and build visibility among U.S. investors.

“This upgrade to the OTCQX Market is a testament to our progress and our continued success of executing on our plan to grow and develop the Troilus gold and copper asset into a cornerstone mine in North America”, commented Justin Reid, CEO of Troilus. “It also demonstrates our financial strength and our commitment to delivering the highest standard of compliance, disclosure and corporate governance. Of all the securities traded on the OTC Markets, we are very proud to be among the 5% on the top tier OTCQX. We anticipate that this upgrade will increase our exposure within the U.S. investment community and provide greater access to shareholders seeking to take part in Troilus’ growth.”

Nighthawk drills 10.25 m of 2.77 g/t Au at Indin

Nighthawk Gold Corp. has released assay results for 18 drill holes (4,048 metres) completed on the Grizzly Bear deposit, located within the area identified as the Colomac Centre, centrally located within the Indin Lake gold property, Northwest Territories, Canada.

Phase 1 of the 2021 drill program was designed to focus primarily on adding in-pit resources. Lateral extensions of known deposits were identified as opportunities for resource expansion and were scheduled first. At Grizzly Bear, all 18 holes targeted the mineralized zone along strike to the north and south. As discussed in more detail below, results are in line with expectations and support the company’s near-term goals of targeting near-surface mineralization for resource growth.

Highlights of Grizzly Bear drill results:

  • Drilling was constrained within 200 metres of surface to target the extension of near-surface mineralization to the north and south of the current resource.
  • Drilling encountered near-surface mineralization particularly to the north:
    • Hole GB21-07 returned 2.77 grams per tonne gold over 10.25 metres.
    • Hole GB21-13 returned 4.64 g/t Au over 6.15 m.
  • Near-surface mineralization to the north encountered a 175 m strike length, which was tested by holes GB21-03, 07, 09, 11 and 12, where this area showed significant quartz veining, alteration and the presence of visible gold in every hole.
  • As part of the phase 2 drill program at Grizzly Bear, additional infill drilling will focus on testing the near-surface mineralization encountered to the north with the goal of potentially adding to the current resource.

Richard Roy, vice-president of exploration, commented: “The phase 1 program at Grizzly Bear was designed to test the near-surface extension of this satellite deposit both to the north and south. Results from the north extension were in line with expectations and confirm the presence of near-surface mineralization with significant results obtained above 200 m depth. The Grizzly Bear satellite deposit, although narrower than Colomac, remains attractive to the economic potential of the Colomac Centre as it is located less than two km to the southwest of the main Colomac deposit. As part of the phase 2 program, additional infill drilling will focus on delineating the extent and continuity of mineralization identified north of the current resources and to incorporate these results into the subsequent resource update at year-end.

“The drilling program is advancing as planned and is now focusing on the Nice Lake and Cass areas, which are considered among the best grassroots targets. The Nice Lake area is crossed by virtually untested Colomac-like sills located less than one km to the east of the main Colomac deposit, while Cass consists of a historical (non-compliant), near-surface higher-grade resource located approximately 15 km southwest of Colomac.”

To date, 18,200 metres of drilling have been completed as part of the phase 1 program. There are currently two drills located at the Nice Lake target within the Colomac Centre, two drills testing the Cass zone and the Albatross target, and one drill located along the northern portion of the main Colomac deposit. Drilling along the Goldcrest deposit has been completed, and results will be released as they become available.

                   GRIZZLY BEAR DRILL RESULTS -- SUMMARY TABLE
  
Hole ID               From                To       Core length        Gold grade
                       (m)               (m)               (m)             (g/t)

GB21-03              99.75            100.75              1.00              1.94
                    109.75            111.75              2.00              1.22
                    118.25            123.00              4.75              0.77
                    139.25            139.75              0.50              1.49
GB21-04             152.75            153.75              1.00              3.68
                    175.75            177.25              1.50              1.14
GB21-06              67.25             68.00              0.75              1.10
GB21-07             102.50            112.75             10.25              2.77
GB21-08             131.25            137.75              6.50              1.11
GB21-09              64.75             65.25              0.50              4.51
                     75.00             75.75              0.75              3.62
                     84.50             85.50              1.00              1.88
GB21-11              52.00             53.00              1.00              1.36
                     84.25             90.00              5.75              1.63
GB21-12             132.50            133.25              0.75              8.02
                    150.75            151.75              1.00              3.42
GB21-13              45.35             51.50              6.15              4.64
GB21-14              56.00             57.00              1.00              1.63
                     84.00             85.00              1.00              1.73
GB21-15             194.00            195.00              1.00              1.37

Note: GB21-01, 02, 05, 10, 16, 17 and 18: no values above 0.80 g/t Au.
Lengths are reported as core lengths. True widths remain undetermined at this 
stage.

GR Silver drills 1.8 m of 1,779 g/t AgEq at Plomosas

GR Silver Mining Ltd. has released drill results from the northern portion of the Plomosas mine area. These results represent intersections of polymetallic (Ag-Au-Pb-Zn (silver-gold-lead-zinc)) hydrothermal breccia near the surface in unmined areas in the historic Plomosas mine area at the Plomosas silver project in Sinaloa, Mexico.

Drill highlights include:

  • SD-13: 1.8 metres at 15.8 grams per tonne gold, 1.1 per cent lead, 3.9 per cent zinc and 17 g/t silver — 1,779 g/t silver equivalent (1);
  • PLS21-13A: 6.2 m at 171 g/t Ag, 1.1 per cent Pb, 0.7 per cent Zn, 0.2 per cent Cu and 0.4 g/t Au — 282 g/t AgEq (1);
  • PLS21-15A: 8.1 m at 227 g/t Ag, 1.7 per cent Pb, 1.4 per cent Zn, 0.1 per cent Cu and 0.3 g/t Au — 354 g/t AgEq (1).

GR Silver Mining president and chief executive officer Marcio Fonseca commented: “The reported drilling results continue to demonstrate the presence of high-grade precious metal mineralization in unmined zones of the historic Plomosas mine area. These results also confirm the presence of wide polymetallic (Ag-Au-Pb-Zn) hydrothermal breccias in underexplored extensions that will be integrated into the upcoming maiden resource estimation. The company has also discovered continuous wide Ag-Au-rich polymetallic mineralization near surface, in the form of high-grade epithermal veins, as well as wide, shallow mineralized zones that demonstrate potential for future open-pit development in a historic Pb and Zn underground mining project.”

(1) AgEq is based on long-term gold, silver, zinc, lead and copper prices of $1,600 (U.S.) per ounce gold, $16.50 (U.S.) per ounce silver, 85 U.S. cents per pound zinc, 95 U.S. cents per pound lead and $2 (U.S.) per pound copper. The metallurgical recoveries are assumed as 90 per cent Ag, 95 per cent Au, 78 per cent Pb, 70 per cent Zn and 70 per cent Cu.

An image on the company’s website illustrates the location of all surface drill holes released to date on the Plomosas mine area. The company has released results from a total of 366 surface and underground drill holes on the Plomosas project, which also includes the San Juan area. All results released for this area are being incorporated into a 3-D model, part of the coming maiden resource estimation.

GR Silver Mining has completed over 16,000 m of surface and underground core drilling at the Plomosas project since its acquisition in 2020. This represents a major advance for a development-stage project that had been dormant for many years. Additionally, the company’s exploration team has completed structural and geological mapping surveys in both areas, revealing what the company believes to be a district-scale Ag-Au-rich epithermal system. The company is planning the continuation of exploration and surface drilling along strike of the mineralized systems in both areas, aiming to discover extensions to the planned resource estimates in the coming months.

A longitudinal section on the company’s website represents the north-south trend of the Plomosas mine area, displaying the location of all surface and underground drill holes released to date and the upside potential for additional Ag-Au mineralization to be discovered along strike and downdip.

                     DRILL HOLE ASSAY RESULTS FOR THIS JUNE 7, 2021, NEWS RELEASE
  
Hole No.      From      To   Drilled width     True width       Ag     Au     Pb       Zn      Cu    AgEq
               (m)     (m)             (m)            (m)    (g/t)  (g/t)    (%)      (%)     (%)   (g/t)

PLS21-13A      3.5    20.7            17.2           16.2       75   0.25    0.7      0.8     0.1     152
includes       4.8    11.0             6.2            5.8      171   0.41    1.1      0.7     0.2     282
PLS21-14     194.0   202.0             8.0            6.9       10   0.11    0.4      0.5     n/a
PLI21-15A     22.5    30.5             8.0            7.6      227   0.27    1.7      1.4     0.1     354
PLS21-19A     16.5    25.4             8.9            8.0       30   0.28    0.7      0.5     0.1     105
              44.0    58.0            14.0           12.7       13   0.16    0.5      0.6     n/a      66
SD-13        227.7   240.8            13.1           10.7       12   2.48    1.1      1.5     n/a     343
includes     234.8   236.6             1.8            1.5       17  15.81    1.1      3.9     n/a   1,779
SD-18        243.0   243.8             0.8            0.7       93   1.74    1.8      5.4     0.1     488
SD-23        265.9   269.7             3.8            3.6      100   0.14    0.2      1.1     0.5     188
SD-30        204.4   225.7            21.3           21.0       25   0.67    1.6      2.4     0.1     218

AgEq is based on long-term gold, silver, zinc, lead and copper prices of $1,600 (U.S.) per ounce gold, 
$16.50 (U.S.) per ounce silver, 85 U.S. cents per pound zinc, 95 U.S. cents per pound lead and $2 (U.S.) 
per pound copper. The metallurgical recoveries are assumed as 90 per cent Ag, 95 per cent Au, 78 per 
cent Pb, 70 per cent Zn and 70 per cent Cu. All numbers are rounded. Results are uncut and undiluted. 
N/a means no relevant assays.

Blue Lagoon outlines plans for Dome Mtn material

Blue Lagoon Resources Inc. has provided the following update on its Dome Mountain gold/silver project, an all-year road-accessible project located a short 50-minute drive from Smithers, B.C., that holds both an environmental management act permit (EMA) and a mining permit providing for up to 75,000 tonnes production annually. In addition, the property has 15 known high-grade gold veins with 90 per cent of the nearly 19,000-hectare property yet to be explored (see the company’s news release dated May 4, 2020).

First mineralized material ready for shipping and processing

With the last underground mining at Dome Mountain taking place in 1992, the company estimates that there is more than 6,000 tonnes of high-grade mineralized material that was never removed and remained stored underground. Having completed all the needed health and safety requirements outlined by the Ministry of Mines, including extensive underground bolting, and with a favourable trucking contract secured, the company is ready to start removing this valuable material from its presently stored location underground and ship it to its toll milling partner, Nicola Mining, that has a state-of-the-art milling facility located in Merritt, B.C.

“We’re very excited to be in a position to remove this high-grade material from the mine and ship it for processing and monetization,” said Rana Vig, president and chief executive officer of Blue Lagoon Resources. “The sale of this material will not only add cash to our treasury but will also give a clear signal to our current and potential shareholders that we are continuing to hit on our key milestones as we execute on a carefully thought-out plan that continues to move the company forward towards its goal of completing the three key amendments required before getting the green light to recommence gold and silver mining production,” he added.

In September, 2017, over 5,000 tonnes of the mineralized material — that will be shipped to Nicola Mining for processing — was assayed and yielded the results in the attached table.

Grade 
sampled    Estimated   Location of
g/t gold      tonnes   sample
        
11.5             100   Outside pile at 120 level
13.2              50   Vent RSE upper level     
14.8             100   Vent RSE back            
18.9              80   Dwpt 10.5                
11.6             500   Dwpt 11                  
10.2             150   Dwpt 12                  
17.6           1,000   Dwpt 13/14               
41.5              40   750 RSE Arg 1370 level   
10.7           1,500   Tag 068                  
11.9           1,500   End of drift 1290 level  

The results of quantity and grade in the table provide a range only and are insufficient to define a mineral resource. There can be no assurance that a mineral resource will be defined from further exploration.

The company has started to remove the mineralized material from its underground mine and will begin to accumulate and store it in its newly constructed ore storage building. Once the final snow melts, the yearly spring breakup complete and weight limits removed from the local roads, trucks will immediately begin transporting the material to Nicola Mining. This is currently scheduled to begin during the week of June 14, 2021.

The company will evaluate a production decision once all permit requirements are in place. Any production decision in advance of obtaining a feasibility study of mineral reserves demonstrating economic and technical viability of the project is associated with increased uncertainty and risk of failure.

Ocean Partners contract secured to buy Dome concentrate

The company is pleased to announce that its toll milling partner, Nicola Mining, has signed an agreement with Ocean Partners UK Ltd. to buy the concentrate generated from the Dome mineralized material. Ocean Partners, a leading European-based commodities trading company with offices in six countries around the world, will buy the processed material in the form of concentrate and pay Nicola Mining and the company based on receiving every 50 tonnes of concentrate material.

Kootenay Silver drills 19.43m of 306 g/t Ag at Copalito

Kootenay Silver Inc. has provided its results from five additional core holes recently completed on the 5 Senores vein at the Copalito silver-gold project, located in Sinaloa state, Mexico.

James McDonald, president and chief executive officer, states: “The 5 Senores vein is proving to be a well-mineralized structure with excellent potential to host significant gold and silver resources. Drilling has now tested 600 metres of the one-kilometre known vein strike on surface. Ten of the 12 holes drilled less than 100 metres from surface indicate that mineralization remains open along strike and to depth providing lots of room for expansion.”

Highlights from holes BDH-21-045 to BDH-21-049 include the following.

BDH-21-045

  • 325.59 grams per tonne silver equivalent (AgEq) over 1.31 metres within 126.51 g/t AgEq over 8.35 metres;
  • This hole tested the 5 Senores vein at a depth of about 26 metres vertically below surface.

BDH-21-046

  • 3,488.77 g/t AgEq over 0.22 metre within 306.04 g/t AgEq over 19.43 metres;
  • BDH-21-046 is a test 25 metres directly below BDH-21-045.

BDH-21-047

  • 114.56 g/t AgEq over 1.00 metre;
  • Parallel vein to 5 Senores vein;
  • 5 Senores vein is displaced by a fault and not intercepted.

BDH-21-48

  • 288.60 g/t AgEq over 2.2 metres within 12 metres grading 96.05 g/t AgEq;
  • 5 Senores vein of quartz, chalcedony and calcite.

BDH-21-49

  • 248.07 g/t AgEq over 1.68 metres within 79.19 g/t AgEq over 10 metres;
  • 5 Senores vein.

Thus far 12 holes have tested 600 metres of strike and 175 metres of dip extent to depth with vein mineralization open along strike and to depth. Only two holes have drill tested a depth greater than 100 metres vertically from surface although topographic relief has enabled testing to 175 metres down dip.

The 5 Senores vein comprises a mineralized structure with two parallel veins. These veins comprise both silicified breccia and classic banded quartz, quartz-calcite and calcite veining. The polymetallic veins are hosted in a volcanic andesite sequence with weak propylic alteration within faults and contact with a dioritic intrusive to the southwest. The veins are mainly quartz, with massive and crustiform textures and quartz-chalcedony bands. Dark gray bands indicate the presence of sulphides in these textures. Also local zones of carbonates mainly calcite can also carry very high grades of precious metals.

Mineralization comprises disseminated pyrite of 1 per cent or less with varying amounts of sphalerite (less than 1 to 5 per cent), galena (less than 1 to 3 per cent) and probable acanthite.

                                 DRILL RESULTS -- HOLES BDH-21-045 TO BDH-21-049
  
               From           To     Interval          Silver        Gold        Pb+Zn            AgEq
Hole ID          (m)          (m)          (m)           (g/t)       (g/t)          (%)           (g/t)    Vein   

BDH-21-045    20.30        28.65         8.35            74.9         0.60        0.06          126.51     5 Senores
Include       20.30        22.00         1.70            43.2        2.563        0.81          217.87              
Include       24.50        25.81         1.31           264.0        0.234        2.26          325.59              
BDH-20-046    35.04        54.47        19.43           217.8        0.830        1.48          306.04     5 Senores
Include       46.50        54.47         7.97           330.4        1.235        1.96          456.13              
              46.50        46.72         0.22         3,160.0        2.270        7.84         3488.77              
              63.00        78.00        15.00            61.3        0.752        0.39          119.27              
Include       63.00        65.00         2.00           220.0        3.795        0.37          475.17              
BDH-21-047    59.00        60.00         1.00           103.0            -        0.49          114.56     5 Senores
BDH-21-048    51.00        63.00        12.00            66.3        0.170        0.81           96.05     5 Senores
              56.30        58.50         2.20           240.8        0.423        0.85          288.60              
              56.30        56.76         0.46           335.0        1.035        0.55          415.39              
              77.12        57.39         0.27           318.0        0.788        2.97          439.26              
BDH-21-049    39.00        49.00        10.00            65.2        0.106        0.30           79.19     5 Senores
              40.32        42.00         1.68           210.1        0.448        0.38          248.07              
              45.00        46.00         1.00           187.0        0.137        0.29          202.72              

*  Silver equivalent based on 65:1 silver to gold ratio, $1 per pound zinc and 80 cents per pound lead.

Note: Estimated true widths range from 50 to 70 per cent of drilled widths depending on dip of the vein and 
      inclination of the hole. All silver composites rounded to the nearest whole number.

Highgold signs exploration agreement with first nations

Highgold Mining Inc. has entered into an exploration agreement (EA) with Matachewan first nation and Mattagami first nation in the Timmins area, Ontario. The purpose of the EA is to promote a co-operative, collaborative and mutually respectful relationship in relation to Highgold’s exploration activities in areas where the two first nations members exercise aboriginal rights.

“We are delighted to formalize the positive working relationship established between Highgold and the neighbouring first nation communities of Matachewan and Mattagami,” commented president and chief executive officer Darwin Green. “The EA reflects Highgold’s commitment to respectful engagement and responsible stewardship, with a mission to benefiting the regions in which we operate.”

“On a more solemn note, Highgold management is deeply saddened by the recent and sudden passing of our good friend and colleague Terry Bursey. Terry, a long-time resident of Red Lake, Ont., and president of Rimini Exploration & Consulting, was a major force in the northern Ontario mining community and has been intimately involved with Highgold’s first nation engagement and exploration agreement efforts. She will be greatly missed.”

Eloro Resources increases target areas at Iska Iska

Eloro Resources Ltd. has released the results from its recently completely magnetics survey on the company’s Iska Iska silver-tin polymetallic project in Potosi department, southern Bolivia. A total of 181.5 line kilometres of magnetic data were collected on 50-metre-spaced north-south lines on all of the accessible parts of the property.

Highlights

  • The magnetic data further confirm the extent of the Iska Iska caldera as determined from geological mapping and satellite interpretation including Aster data.
  • The Santa Barbara and Central breccia pipes, both of which have been confirmed by drill testing, are marked by prominent low anomalies reflecting strong alteration.
  • The Porco (South) breccia pipe target, which is approximately 600 metres in diameter, has a similar signature to the Santa Barbara and Central breccia pipes, further confirming the likelihood of it being a major breccia pipe.
  • It appears likely that the Central and Porco breccia pipes merge at depth.
  • There is a prominent area of low intensity northwest of the Santa Barbara breccia pipe which requires follow-up work.

Dr. Bill Pearson, PGeo, Eloro’s executive vice-president of exploration, stated: “The results of this magnetic survey have further refined and expanded our target areas in the Iska Iska caldera as well as outlined an additional target for follow-up northwest of the caldera. The next step will be to calculate 3-D magnetic inverse models which will assist in planning of additional drilling. Induced polarization/geophysical surveys, both downhole and surface, are planned to commence in the latter part of June to further refine target definition.”

Troilus Gold begins trading on OTCQX Best Market

Troilus Gold Corp. has been approved for immediate trading on the OTCQX Best Market, the top tier of the over-the-counter markets. Troilus shares previously traded on the OTCQB Venture Market and will continue to trade under the symbol CHXMF.

“This upgrade to the OTCQX Market is a testament to our progress and our continued success of executing on our plan to grow and develop the Troilus gold and copper asset into a cornerstone mine in North America”, commented Justin Reid, CEO of Troilus. “It also demonstrates our financial strength and our commitment to delivering the highest standard of compliance, disclosure and corporate governance. Of all the securities traded on the OTC Markets, we are very proud to be among the 5% on the top tier OTCQX. We anticipate that this upgrade will increase our exposure within the U.S. investment community and provide greater access to shareholders seeking to take part in Troilus’s growth.”

The OTCQX is intended for established, investor-focused U.S. and international companies. To qualify for the OTCQX, companies must meet high financial standards, follow best practice corporate governance and demonstrate compliance with applicable securities laws. The companies found on the OTCQX are distinguished by the integrity of their operations and diligence with which they convey their qualifications.

U.S. investors can find current financial disclosure and real-time Level 2 quotes for Troilus on the OTC Markets website.

Amerigo Resources appoints Naudie, Thomas as directors

Amerigo Resources Ltd. has appointed Margot Naudie and David Thomas to the company’s board of directors.

Ms. Naudie is a seasoned 25-year capital markets professional with global investment expertise as a senior portfolio manager for long-only and long/short North American and global natural resource portfolios. She has held senior roles at leading multibillion-dollar asset management firms, including TD Asset Management, Marret Asset Management and CPP Investment Board. Ms. Naudie was cited as a Brendan Wood TopGun Investment Mind (Platinum) for five consecutive years. She is an active and engaged independent director on public and private company boards, where she acts as lead director, serves on investment committees and chairs audit, compensation, and HR and ESG committees. She has a bachelor of arts in politics/economics from McGill University, an MBA from the Ivey School of Business and is a chartered financial analyst. Ms. Naudie will join Amerigo’s audit committee.

Mr. Thomas has over 40 years of experience in the mining industry, working with Kennecott Copper Corp., Bougainville Copper Ltd., Amselco Minerals, Arimetco International and Austpac Resources in Australia. He also was a vice-president and technical director for Mellon Bank before joining Southern Peru Copper Corp., where he served as mine manager, area manager, chief engineer and vice-president of operations. Mr. Thomas also worked on the team developing the Toromocho copper project in Peru, initially as an adviser and consultant and eventually as vice-president of operations and executive vice-president and chief operating officer. Mr. Thomas holds a BSc in mining engineering from the University of Utah, and an MSc in mineral resources engineering from the University of Minnesota. His ample experience as a corporate director and wealth of technical and operational experience will be invaluable to Amerigo.

Concurrent with the appointment of Ms. Naudie and Mr. Thomas, the company announces the resignation of Sidney Robinson, who joined the Amerigo board as a founding director in 2003.

“We are excited to welcome Margot and David to the Amerigo board of directors and to be able to tap into their wealth of knowledge, experience and insight, which will undoubtedly contribute to Amerigo’s consolidation and success ” said Klaus Zeitler, Amerigo’s executive chairman. He added, “Amerigo owes a debt of gratitude to Sidney for his innumerable hours of service as a tremendously diligent board member and for his sage and always timely advice since 2003.”

Black Iron talks up ESG qualities of pellet feed

Production of steel using Black Iron Inc.’s anticipated high-grade 68 per cent iron magnetite pellet feed reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by approximately 30 per cent as compared with more typically consumed 62 per cent iron hematite fines. Black Iron can also easily further upgrade its product to direct reduction pellet feed as is required to produce steel using green hydrogen which is getting a lot of attention in the media as a promising technology to achieve carbon neutrality.

Investors poured a record $51-billion (U.S.) into environment, social and governance (ESG) focused investments in 2020 which is more than double the prior year. Climate change in particular is a prominent focus with several countries including the United Kingdom, France, Japan and most recently China setting future carbon neutral targets. Given carbon emissions account for approximately 81 per cent of green house gas emissions (GHG), major corporations including steel producers ArcelorMittal, Baowu, Thyssenkrupp and Voestalpine are following suit by targeting carbon neutrality by 2050.

As such there is a fundamental shift occurring in the type of iron ore consumed by steel mills from fines which need to be first sintered (an emission intensive process to fuse fine iron ore particles into larger rocks of various size) to pellets which are small balls of uniform size.

When a steel blast furnace is fed with sinter or lumps, energy needs to be continually added until the last lump, typically the largest, is fully melted. Since pellets are all uniform in size, they melt at roughly the same rate thereby substantially reducing the amount of time, energy and resulting emissions generated to produce steel. When looking at the total energy consumed through the full value chain to produce steel, the net GHG emissions using high-grade magnetite pellet feed, as Black Iron plans to produce, are reduced by an estimated 30 per cent.

Black Iron’s Shymanivske mine will be ideally placed to deliver high-grade 68 per cent iron content pellet feed which sits at the top 4 per cent purity in the world.

To meet future anticipated demand for high purity pellet feed, CRU business intelligence estimates that an additional 133 million tonnes of supply will need to be brought on stream by 2035. Out of this 133 million tonne shortfall, 40 million tonnes will be required for direct reduction (DR) steel mills which use natural gas instead of metallurgical coal to produce steel cutting emissions by roughly 50 per cent. The production of steel using DR technology requires a very high-purity iron feedstock and there are few iron ore mines that can meet this stringent quality requirements. Fortunately, Black Iron would only need to make a slight incremental investment to add a floatation circuit to the end of its currently planned process to be one of the mines able to produce DR quality pellet feed.

Production of steel using green hydrogen is a very promising future source of energy because the only emission generated from the burning of hydrogen is water. Multibillion-dollar iron ore mining companies including RioTinto and Ferrexpo are currently investing in technologies to produce green hydrogen as an alternative future source of energy to make steel. Although it is likely a decade away, green hydrogen is showing great promise to reduce the net emissions in the production of steel to negligible levels as seen below but will place an even greater demand on the need for DR grade iron ore pellets and pellet feed as Black Iron could produce.

In conclusion, Black Iron provides a unique opportunity for investors to profit from the Shymanivske projects projected low-cost operation while at the same time providing ESG-focused investors a great chance to invest in a cause they can strongly support.

Dolly Varden starts fieldwork at Dolly Varden

Dolly Varden Silver Corp. has initiated field activities on the Dolly Varden silver project, located near tidewater in northwest British Columbia. This year’s program is the first phase of a two-year goal to aggressively expand and upgrade the Torbrit silver deposit and multiple silver-rich satellite zones with the objective of advancing Dolly Varden to be the next high-grade silver mine in British Columbia. Additionally, the company’s geological team has generated multiple highly prospective targets throughout the property to be drilled during this program. A 10,000-metre phase I core drilling program, in addition to road and site upgrades in preparation for underground access and exploration work is envisioned.

“Our geological team has been highly encouraged with the recent engineering reviews of the Torbrit silver deposit, whereby the majority of the wide, consistent silver mineralization is potentially amenable to bulk underground mining methods such as longhole stoping as well as excellent underground geotechnical conditions. Our 2021 drilling program is designed to upgrade inferred resources to measured and indicated classification and test for near-mine extensions and new mineralized zones to enhance the block model. Additionally, our regional exploration program will test multiple high-grade exploration targets, both at surface in at depth. After an intense and methodical off season geological review, our 2021 field program will be our most ambitious but very goal oriented. Combined with Hecla’s nearby drilling program and other junior company exploration Projects, this will be a very busy season in the Dolly Varden silver belt,” said Shawn Khunkhun, CEO of Dolly Varden.

Dolly Varden’s crews have mobilized to prepare camp and facilities located on tidewater in the community of Alice Arm, BC, with drilling to commence shortly thereafter. The planned program will be split with 5,000 meters allocated to Phase I program of delineating and expanding the Torbrit Silver Resource and 5,000 meters of exploration drilling with the objective of discovering new deposits.

Resource modelling at the high-grade Torbrit Silver Deposit included integrating the 2019 and 2020 drilling results which has increased the understanding and confidence in the existing resource to target specific areas of the deposit for conversion from Inferred to Indicated/Measured resource categories. Drill holes have been planned from existing historic surface infrastructure to infill within the current block model and to expand the limits of known mineralization or satellite Zones (Figure 1). Additionally, geotechnical logging will be completed for upcoming mining studies.

The Company is excited to explore for new deposits of high-grade silver mineralization within the favorable host rocks where alteration and geochemical signatures indicative of volcanogenic-related silver mineralization are strongest. The Company’s updated geological model suggests that the favorable Torbrit silver-rich horizon dips underneath the bottom of the valley that hosts the Deposit. Exploration drilling will include some deeper holes that will explore for the down plunge extension potential of Torbrit (Figure 2).

Newly developed models on gold and silver vein stockwork and breccias with anomalous pathfinder geochemistry such as bismuth and tellurium that was drilled during the 2020 program are also highly encouraging. Exploration drilling during this Program will continue to test these altered and mineralized rocks, similar in nature to Ascot’s Premier and Big Missouri deposits located to the Northwest of Dolly Varden.

Torbrit deposit

Torbrit is high-grade silver deposit that is potentially amenable to low-cost underground bulk mining methods. It is the largest portion of the four silver deposits that make up the current 43-101 Mineral Resource at the Dolly Varden Silver Project and the largest pureplay silver Project in British Columbia and Canada. Modern mining and processing occurred on the Property during the 1950’s and 60’s, in addition to direct-shipping silver mines throughout the Property during the first half of the 20th century. Underground working are accessible from a road bed that connects the to deep tidewater docks at Alice Arm, BC. Work during 2020 will upgrade the road to the deposit, potentially in conjunction with other Companies operating in the area.

Critical Elements prepares for chemical plant study

Critical Elements Lithium Corp. has retained the services of Metso Outotec and WSP in Canada to prepare a phase II engineering study for a chemical plant to produce high-quality lithium hydroxide monohydrate for the electric vehicle and energy storage system battery industries.

Phase II Engineering Study for an integrated lithium hydroxide plant

Metso Outotec will design the calcination process of spodumene concentrate (which would include spodumene concentrate from Phase I of its Rose Lithium-Tantalum project but also possibly from other sources), and study the chemical process to produce lithium hydroxide monohydrate from calcined spodumene concentrate. WSP Canada Inc. will design the infrastructure related to the process plant and will act as the integrator for the study. Critical Elements will provide the market study information for the economic analysis.

Metso Outotec is a frontrunner in sustainable technologies, end-to-end solutions and services for the aggregates, minerals processing, metals refining and recycling industries globally. Metso Outotec has global experience on developing lithium extraction technology and has engineered and delivered processing plants for industrial minerals globally for decades. It has engaged its own R&D to both process and equipment development to lithium processes, targeting especially for battery grade lithium hydroxide. Its reference list of studies and engineering projects of lithium plants as well as its proprietary equipment deliveries keep on growing on projects world-wide.

As one of the world’s leading professional services firms, WSP provides engineering, design, and strategic advisory services in Transportation & Infrastructure, Property & Buildings, Environment, Power & Energy, Resources and Industry sectors. WSP has previously conducted the surface infrastructure feasibility study and environmental impact assessment for the Rose Lithium-Tantalum project.

The end product of the plant would be battery grade lithium hydroxide monohydrate (LMH, >56.5%). It is currently anticipated that the plant capacity would be approximately 27,000 tpa of LMH, as Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE). The plant would also be capable of producing battery grade lithium carbonate. It is further anticipated that the plant would consist of the following main process areas:Pressure leachingPressure Leach filtrationConversionLeach residue filtrationIon ExchangeLiOH*H2O crystallizationReagents preparationUtilities

Metso Outotec will also continue to perform additional piloting studies to further increase the data set of the hydroxide process contemplated to be used by Critical Elements. The collection of additional data points will provide valuable data for vendor selection and accelerate a smooth start-up phase of the plant. To that effect, spodumene concentrate produced during the pilot plant program conducted at SGS’s Lakefield laboratory in 2017 is being shipped to Metso Outotec facilities in Europe.

Earlier pilot plant studies by Metso Outotec (see News Release dated October 29, 2018) successfully converted spodumene concentrate from the Rose Lithium-Tantalum Project into battery grade lithium hydroxide using a thermal leaching process. The pilot plant conversion process demonstrated strong results with extraction rates of 93%. This extraction rate surpasses the worldwide average of between 70 to 75% in what is accepted as an industry standard. In addition, the pilot plant produced battery grade lithium hydroxide monohydrate (LMH, >56.5%).

Based on the results of the earlier Metso Outotec studies, Critical Elements believes that the overall total recovery rate should approximate 80% which compares very favourably to industry standards. This recovery rate estimate is based on the following:Concentrator Plant Recovery – 90% as indicated in variability testsDecrepitation Kiln Recovery – 96% verified in the pilot plantThermal Leaching Process – 93% as an average verified in the pilot plantOverall yield – potentially over 80%

Critical Elements looks forward to the results of the integrated Phase II engineering study, economic results of which may be incremental to the economic results of the Phase I feasibility study (see News Release dated September 6, 2017) that focused on the production of spodumene concentrate only. The Phase I feasibility study generated robust results including a 34.9% after tax internal rate of return and $726 million NPV (8%). The Company continues to anticipate the receipt of environmental authorizations, detailed engineering, project financing and a final investment decision for Phase I of the Rose Project before year-end.