Thursday, November 11, 2010

China nuclear plans pushing uranium prices

"China has increased its target for nuclear power for 2020 to 112 GW (from 70 GW), well above our previous estimate of 86 GW," according to a report on, and that is changing the global market for uranium. The spot price for U3O8 hit $58.50 this week, the highest in over 2 years. Forecasts through 2018 are for prices in the $75-80 range.

Arizona has some of the richest uranium deposits in the world, concentrated in breccia pipes in the Arizona Strip and adjacent areas in the northern part of the state. About 1 million acres of federal lands are currently closed to exploration and development pending the outcome of an environmental impact statement that is in preparation.

Exploration companies report finding hundreds of new geophysical anomalies in the region that could be previously unknown breccia pipes, although it's undetermined how many of them could be mineralized with uranium.

1 comment:

  1. The EIS for the Grand Canyon regarding uranium exploration and mining is months late now. I heard that it will be end of December or possibly January before the draft EIS is published. It seems like it will take the full two years to get this EIS done and a decision made.

    The New Repubican controlled house will hopefully make this issue mute by having the House resource committee direct the Interior Department to leave off, i.e., that there is NOT an emergency requiring a segregation. Then they can follow up with a law that prevents the withdrawal as was introduced by AZ Rep. Trent Franks. I wonder if this kind of law would make it through the Senate. Perhaps it could be made part of the Rosemont legislation and could be known as the Arizona Mining Bill of 2011.

    The only thing that would be better is having a few million dollars appropriated (not earmarked) for the BLM and Forest Service to use to perform the EIS's required to do exploration drilling. The FS money that was budgeted for this was shifted over to the Grand Canyon EIS and exploration plans of operation were returned for the duration. I think the appropriation appropriate because Interior's actions has delayed and decimated uranium exploration in this area and we need to kick start it again.

    Gregory Yount
    The NAU Project, LLC