Polaris Announces Maiden Mineral Resource Estimate for Black Bear Project
October 3, 2016
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Polaris Materials Corporation (TSX:PLS) (the “Company”, “Polaris” or “we”) is pleased to announce the receipt of a NI 43-101 maiden Mineral Resource estimate for its Black Bear Project (“Black Bear” or the “Project”) located approximately 5km from the company’s Orca Quarry on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. The resource estimate includes Measured and Indicated Resources of 70 million tonnes and Inferred Resources of 330 million tonnes of basalt material suitable to be processed for use in construction aggregates.
- Measured and Indicated Mineral Resource of 70 million tonnes of basalt in a preliminary pit shell with favourable topography for crusher and site infrastructure
- Drilling and surface sampling confirmed geological consistency and continuity of the deposit
- Large Inferred Mineral Resource of basalt supports potential for a multi-decade project that could complement the existing Orca Quarry and has the potential to provide for new product lines
- Existing infrastructure at the Orca Sand and Gravel site may reduce investment requirement versus a standalone quarry operation
The Mineral Resource estimate for Black Bear is constrained within three conceptual pit shells, identified as Phase I, Phase II and Phase III. The Phase I pit shell represents the initial area targeted for development work and is situated on the west part of the Black Bear license. Pit shells for Phase II and Phase III are located east of the Phase I pit and were based on similar considerations to the Phase I conceptual pit.
Table 1: Black Bear Project Mineral Resource Estimate - Effective Date: October 3, 2016
- Analyses of samples indicate the basalt material is of suitable quality to permit the production of various construction aggregates.
- The Mineral Resources in this news release were estimated using current Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) Definition Standards for Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves.
- Resources are constrained within three conceptual pit shells based on preliminary estimates of technical and economic parameters which include a 45° pit slope and that all basalt within the pit shell meets reasonable prospects of eventual economic extraction.
- Mineral Resource estimate by Wm. (John) Beck, P. Eng. of Beck & Associates GeoConsultants Inc.
“The maiden resource estimate at Black Bear, based on our initial exploratory drilling and surface sampling, contains 70 million tonnes of basalt M&I Resources that may be suitable for blending with our Orca Sand & Gravel products and could potentially be attractive to additional markets in the future. The additional 330 million tonnes of basalt Inferred Resources suggest that Black Bear could be a multi-generational project that could provide long-term employment and economic benefits to northern Vancouver Island. We are very pleased with the Black Bear discovery and continue to focus on fast-tracking the project rapidly through the permitting and evaluation process. The Black Bear deposit is located at surface and is expected to support a low strip quarrying operation that can produce material similar to the high quality concrete aggregates produced by the Orca Quarry. With additional work, we anticipate that Black Bear could set the stage for the next phase of Polaris’ growth,” stated Ken Palko, President and CEO.
ABOUT THE MINERAL RESOURCE
Initial site investigation, database validation, and construction of the geological model was carried out by Gary Nordin, P. Geo. This geological model formed the basis for resource estimation that was carried out by Wm. (John) Beck, P. Eng. of Beck and Associates GeoConsultants Inc. Gary Nordin and John Beck are both Qualified Persons as defined by NI 43-101.
The Mineral Resource is based on the results from 366.4 metres of core drilling in 5 holes, as well as 7 surface rock samples and detailed geological mapping covering the entire Black Bear resource area. Initial analyses of the tested samples have demonstrated the material to be of a suitable quality to permit the production of various aggregate products to serve a variety of market specifications. Core drill results were used to develop the Measured and Indicated Resources, while the Inferred Resources are derived from outcrop sampling and geological stratigraphy.
Tonnage estimates are based on 15 density measurements recovered from the drill core and taken on twenty (20) metre intervals and applied to a preliminary block model. Blocks classified as Measured Mineral Resources are within 160 metres of 4 closely grouped boreholes towards the southern end of the conceptual Phase I pit outline. Indicated Mineral Resource blocks have a maximum distance to at least 1 hole of 290 m, also being constrained by topography and surface sampling, while Inferred Mineral Resources are derived from geological outcrop mapping in the Phase II and Phase III pit areas and are supported by construction aggregate analytical testing of 5 representative rock samples.
In order to establish reasonable prospects for eventual economic extraction, the Mineral Resources were constrained within an optimized pit shell using Rockworks 17 software. The pit boundary was designed to best represent the identified environmental, social, and engineering parameters. This included identifying setbacks from existing roads, watercourses, and the maintenance of existing tree visual barriers.
The basalt deposit is expected to require only the stripping of a thin layer of overburden and is otherwise continuous throughout the extent of the modelled pit. The project is not currently the subject of a preliminary economic assessment, pre-feasibility study, or feasibility study and additional work will be required to determine the potential economic viability of the project.
The Black Bear tenure is situated in whole or in part within the traditional territories of the Kwakiutl Band and the ‘Namgis First Nation. Polaris intends to work with them as well as with the BC Government and local stakeholders and to apply the same collaborative approach and uncompromising environmental standards that have been a central feature of the development and operation of the Orca Quarry since 2001.
Beck and Associates Geoconsultants, Inc. is preparing a technical report in accordance with NI 43-101 in respect of the Mineral Resource discussed in this news release and this technical report will be filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and will also be available on the company’s website at www.polarismaterials.com within 45 days of the date of this news release.
Wm. (John) Beck, P. Eng. of Beck and Associates Geoconsultants Inc. and Gary Nordin, P. Geo. are the Qualified Persons for this news release and are independent of Polaris and its subsidiaries within the meaning of NI 43-101. Both have reviewed and verified that the technical information contained in this release is accurate and approve of the written disclosure of same.
About Polaris Materials Corporation:
Polaris Materials Corporation is engaged in the development and operation of construction aggregate quarries in Canada to supply distribution facilities in the United States through coastal shipping. The Company's active construction aggregate interests consist of its Orca Sand and Gravel Quarry in British Columbia and two associated receiving terminals in Richmond and Long Beach, California. The Company also owns the Black Bear Project located in close proximity to the Orca Quarry, and a controlling interest in the Eagle Rock Quarry Project, located on the south coast of Vancouver Island.
For further information, please contact:
Nicholas Van Dyk
Vice President, Investor Relations and Corporate Development
Polaris Materials Corporation
Tel: (604) 915-5000 Ext. 111
Qualified Person Statement
Wm. (John) Beck, P.Eng. is a Qualified Person for the purposes of National Instrument 43-101 and supervised the estimation of the maiden Resource Estimate for the Black Bear Project, using data and test results collected by Gary Nordin, P.Geo.
Gary Nordin, P.Geo (BC) is a Qualified Person for the purposes of National Instrument 43-101 and supervised all aspects of the exploration diamond drilling and geological mapping and sampling program. Geological and technical logging and sampling were carried out at a secure area at the Orca Sand & Gravel Quarry under Mr. Nordin’s supervision and samples were shipped by secure courier to Golder Associates laboratories in Burnaby, BC, where they were shipped on to additional laboratories as needed.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains "forward-looking statements" and "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities laws. These statements and information appear in this document and include estimates, forecasts, information and statements as to management's expectations with respect to, among other things, further results from exploration activities on the Black Bear Project, Mineral Resource estimates at the Black Bear Project, the potential for expansion into additional markets, further employment and economic benefits, the future financial or operating performance of the Company, including increases in gross margins, increases in sales volumes, shipments and selling prices, costs of production, capital and operating expenditures, requirements for additional capital, government regulation of quarrying operations, environmental risks, reclamation expenses, and title disputes, the Canadian dollar compared to the US dollar, increases in Californian construction activity and US infrastructure funding. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements and information can be identified by the use of words such as "may", "will", "should", "plans", "expects", "intends", "anticipates", "believes", "budget", and "scheduled" or the negative thereof or variations thereon or similar terminology. Forward-looking statements and information are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by management, are inherently subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties and contingencies. Readers are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements and information are not guarantees and there can be no assurance that such statements and information will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's expectations are disclosed in the Company's continuous disclosure documents which are filed with Canadian regulators on SEDAR (www.sedar.com), including under the heading “Risks and Uncertainties” in the Company’s Annual Report and under the heading “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Information Form. Such factors include, amongst others, the effects of general economic conditions, changing foreign exchange rates and actions by government authorities, uncertainties associated with legal proceedings and negotiations, industry supply levels, competitive pricing pressures, mineral resource and reserve estimates and the timing and development of the Black Bear project. The Company expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements and information whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law. All written and oral forward-looking statements and information attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing cautionary statements.