Appia Energy’s monazite ‘a particular gem in the world of rare earths’

Appia Energy Corp. (CSE: API | OTCQB: APAAF) is a company focused on strategic minerals in Canada, specifically uranium and rare earths. The company has a high-grade rare earths project at Alces Lake and is also targeting uranium in three additional properties, all of which are located in the Athabasca Basin in northern Saskatchewan. In addition, the company has uranium (and associated rare earths) in a property near the town of Elliot Lake, Ontario. Thirteen underground mines on this property produced approximately 360 million pounds of U3O8 from 1955-1996.

After a very successful summer drilling program on the Alces Lake property, the company has raised new equity in the form of non-brokered private placements of equity and flow-through shares. In early December 2020, the company closed a non-brokered $0.4 million flow-through financing. This was preceded by another flow-through and equity raise announced in October, which raised a total $1.8 million in new equity. In addition, the company raised a further $0.8 million through the exercise of share purchase warrants between September 14 and November 5, 2020. All of the new capital raised is intended for continued exploration on the company’s uranium and rare earth properties in Saskatchewan.

Particularly important to the company and shareholders, the rare earths continue to draw more market attention. For industry watchers and participants, the recent global activities are bringing the scarcity and security of supply of rare earths to the fore. So much so that at the end of September 2020, President Trump signed an executive order regarding critical materials, declaring a national emergency as related to rare earths. To further exacerbate the global focus on rare earths, on December 1, 2020, China implemented its Export Control Law, which is going to have impact on the export of rare earths from the country. China arguably has the world’s most complete rare earth industry chain, which means in order to make full use of the rare earths mined in various countries, they must come to China for processing. China produces approximately 80% of the world’s rare earths but can only supply about 30% of the input.

Reminiscent of other industries and other parties’ attempts to corner particular markets, the world of rare earths appears to be undergoing a seismic shift. Governments outside of the US are also recognizing this trend and the provincial government of Saskatchewan (Canada), via the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), announced in August 2020 plans to have an operational rare earths processing facility completed and operational in late 2022. Unknown to most people, the SRC has world renowned rare earths experts who have over 30 years experience in the sector. This facility is a first of its kind in Canada and is strategic for the rare earths properties in western Canada.

All of these global activities are relevant to Appia and the rest of the exploration industry’s move away from a stranglehold on rare earths supply from China. In particular, according to the company, the Alces Lake property has the second highest average grade of rare earths in the world. Combine this with access to infrastructure in the immediate area and the further potential of the Alces Lake property (less than 1% of the property explored with diamond drilling), including six new areas of the rare earths system on the property.

One word – monazite. The significance of the Alces Lake property should not be underestimated. Why? The rare earths on the property are 100% hosted within monazite, which has proven simple extraction methods dating back to the 1950s. But more importantly, the monazite at Alces Lake occurs as isolated grains, 1 – 3 cm thin lenses and as isolated clusters with further metres thick massive clusters which have been found to be outcropping at surface. The monazite ore has critical rare earths Neodymium (Nd), Praseodymium (Pr), Dysprosium (Dy), and Terbium (Tb) which are necessary for the permanent magnet industry and represent approximately 85% of the potential value at Alces Lake.

While it is far too early to declare Appia Energy a leader in the global race to develop new supply sources outside of China, their Alces Lake asset is compelling and the timing is excellent. Investors should be watching this company keenly, as the global rare earths story evolves.

Vital Metals’ Geoff Atkins on the race to produce rare earths in 2021

In a recent InvestorIntel interview, Tracy Weslosky speaks with Geoff Atkins, Managing Director of Vital Metals Limited (ASX: VML), about the market interest in Vital Metals and signing a binding term sheet with the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) to negotiate a definitive agreements for the construction and operation of a rare earth extraction plant.

In this InvestorIntel interview, which may also be viewed on YouTube (click here to subscribe to the InvestorIntel Channel), Geoff started, “We are moving full steam ahead towards getting into production at Nechalacho Project in 2021.” He continued by saying that Vital Metals is closest to production in the rare earths space which draws a lot of interest, he mentioned, only one rare earths project went into production in the last decade.

Geoff also commented on the Vital Metals’ binding term sheet with the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC). He said, “The Saskatchewan Research Council has a lot experience with rare earths and we have agreed with them that they will build and operate a rare earths extraction plant for us.”

To watch the full interview, click here

About Vital Metals Limited:

Vital Metals is an explorer and developer with highly prospective mineral projects, focusing on the world-class rare earth Nechalacho project in Canada. They plan to commence production at Nechalacho in 2021, and aims to produce a minimum 5,000 tonnes of contained REO by 2025. Vital Metals aims to become the lowest cost producer of mixed rare earth oxide outside of China by developing one of the highest grade rare earth deposits in the world and the only rare earth project capable of beneficiation solely by ore sorting. Vital’s other projects include the high-grade Wigu Hill rare earth resource in Tanzania.

To learn more about Vital Metals Limited, click here

Disclaimer: Vital Metals Limited is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

Search Minerals’ Greg Andrews on the electrification of vehicles and the “push” for rare earth magnets

In a recent InvestorIntel interview, Tracy Weslosky speaks with Greg Andrews, President, CEO, and Director of Search Minerals Inc. (TSXV: SMY), about the electrification of vehicles and their collaboration agreements with the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) and USA Rare Earth.

In this InvestorIntel interview, which may also be viewed on YouTube (click here to subscribe to the InvestorIntel Channel), Greg started, “The recent Canadian government’s, the US government’s, the EU government’s rule on electrification and reducing internal combustion vehicles is a push in the right space for electrification which of course uses rare earth magnets.” He continued by saying that in the last year the OEMs have been investing a lot of capital in electrification of vehicles which again requires a secure supply chain of rare earths to make their business plans operable.

“The collaboration agreements with both SRC and USA Rare Earth is a critical next step for us to turn our product into oxides.” Greg said. He added that Search Minerals is exploring the proven Solvent Extraction Process with SRC and Continuous Ion Exchange process with USA Rare Earth to get their projects off the ground.

To watch the full interview, click here

About Search Minerals Inc.

Led by a proven management team and board of directors, Search is focused on finding and developing Critical Rare Earths Elements (CREE), Zirconium (Zr) and Hafnium (Hf) resources within the emerging Port Hope Simpson – St. Lewis CREE District of South East Labrador. The Company controls a belt 63 km long and 2 km wide and is road accessible, on tidewater, and located within 3 local communities. Search has completed a preliminary economic assessment report for FOXTROT, and a resource estimate for DEEP FOX. Search is also working on three exploration prospects along the belt which include: FOX MEADOW, SILVER FOX and AWESOME FOX.

Search has continued to optimize our patented Direct Extraction Process technology with the generous support from the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, and from the Atlantic Canada Opportunity Agency. We have completed two pilot plant operations and produced highly purified mixed rare earth carbonate concentrate and mixed REO concentrate for separation and refining.

To learn more about Search Minerals Inc., click here

Disclaimer: Search Minerals Inc. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

MOU with the Saskatchewan Research Council signals another milestone for Search Minerals on their quest to produce rare earths in NA

A likely Biden victory in the USA is positive for all the rare earths miners. This is because one of Biden’s key policies is a massive $2 trillion green infrastructure and jobs plan over his first term in office that aims to have a US carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035. This would be a huge tailwind for the US renewable energy sector (solar and wind) as well as supportive to the US electric vehicle (EV) industry. Any North American rare earths suppliers who can potentially supply the USA and/or Canada with rare earths would be likely to benefit as North America embraces the green revolution.

One rare earth miner worth considering is Search Minerals Inc. (TSXV: SMY) (“Search”). Search is focused on finding and developing critical rare earth element mineral assets in Labrador, Canada.

In some very exciting recent news Search has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC). The MOU outlines a collaboration with SRC as they build their Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan, Canada.

Search Minerals President and CEO, Greg Andrews, commented: “We anticipate using the (SRC) conventional solvent extraction process to enable Search to validate the ability to produce the individual rare earth oxides necessary to enter the rare earth supply chain.

Recent announcements regarding building electric cars in Canada and other government led initiatives for clean and green technology provides the framework for industry access to a secure rare earth supply chain in Canada. We believe Search is well positioned to capitalize on these opportunities.”

Search controls properties in three areas of Labrador, Canada. These are:

  • The Port Hope Simpson (PHS) Critical Rare Earth Element District in SE Labrador
  • The Henley Harbour Area in Southern Labrador
  • The Red Wine Complex located in Central Labrador

Search Minerals has nearby infrastructure in place at St. Lewis, Labrador, Canada


Within the Port Hope Simpson District Search’s main discoveries are the Foxtrot Resource, Deep Fox, Fox Meadow, Silver Fox, and Awesome Fox deposits which contain rare earths including dysprosium (Dy), neodymium (Nd), praseodymium (Pr), terbium (Tb), yttrium (Y), zirconium (Zr), and hafnium (Hf).

The district covers a 63 km long and 2 km wide belt. At Foxtrot the total Indicated Resource is 7.392 million tonnes with grades of neodymium oxide (1,732ppm), neodymium (1,485ppm), praseodymium (397ppm), and dysprosium (191ppm). The 14 year Life of Mine (LOM) Foxtrot Project offers an IRR of 16.7% on an after tax Net Present Value (NPV) 10% of $48M, with a CapEx of only $152M. The NPV quoted above is only for the Foxtrot Project, so once the other projects are combined into a bigger project the NPV should improve.

At Fox Meadow, 2020 channel assay results outlined two mineralized zones on the surface: The NW zone is up to 175m wide and the SE zone is up to 116m wide. Combined, the mineralization is at least 790m long and contains similar grades of the REE magnet materials (Nd, Pr, Tb and Dy) as Foxtrot and Deep Fox. This is a good result as it means Search is continuing to find more REE mineralization to potentially further grow their resource.

At Silver Fox, Search has recently successfully expanded the Silver Fox high grade zirconium-hafnium (REE) mineralized zone. In the news release Search commented: “This surface expression is significantly longer, but thinner, than the surface expressions of the nearby and related Foxtrot and Deep Fox Resources. The mineralization is similarly hosted by peralkaline volcanic rocks and contains lower grades of the REE magnet materials (Nd, Pr, Tb and Dy) but significantly higher grades of Zr and Hf.”

At Awesome Fox, the 2020 channel program (7 new channels) along with previous channels has outlined a REE mineralized zone ranging from about 4-43m thick and 850m long.


Closing remarks

Earlier in 2020, rare earths expert Jack Lifton stated about Search Minerals: “I think it may well be Canada’s first commercial rare earth producer.” Given Search has completed a Resource estimate (Foxtrot, Deep Fox), a PEA (Foxtrot), has successfully produced 99% purity REO concentrate from their pilot plant and patented process, and now has a potential larger scale processing option with SRC; this all combines to suggest that Search Minerals is well on the way towards commercial production. Next steps would involve a BFS and potentially some trial production with SRC once their facility is built.

Search Mineral’s current market cap is only C$10.5M suggesting there may be plenty of upside potential ahead, especially if they continue to successfully advance towards production.

Jack Lifton with Tom Drivas on the Saskatchewan Research Council’s Rare Earths Processing Facility

InvestorIntel’s Tracy Weslosky moderates a discussion with the Technology Metals Show host Jack Lifton and Appia Energy Corp.’s (CSE: API | OTCQB: APAAF) CEO, President and Director Tom Drivas on the Saskatchewan Research Council’s (SRC) plans to develop a “first-of-its-kind” Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan, Canada.

In an InvestorIntel interview that can also be viewed on our InvestorIntel YouTube channel, Jack started, “This is the first time it has been done in North America,” he continued, “The Canadian companies that are associated with the SRC are going to be the leading companies in Canada in the rare earths space.”

Tom went on to say that Appia has a high-grade rare earths project in Saskatchewan. “Having a rare earths processing plant in Saskatchewan, in the same area where we are and in the same jurisdiction, is a game changer,” he added. Tom also explained how the processing facility is going to benefit Appia Energy and its shareholder.

To watch the full interview, click here

To learn more about Appia Energy Corp., click here

Disclaimer: Appia Energy Corp. is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

Jack Lifton with Geoff Atkins on Vital Metals’ expected 2021 rare earths production start at Nechalacho

The Technology Metals Show host Jack Lifton talks with Geoff Atkins, Managing Director of Vital Metals Limited (ASX: VML), about Vital Metals’ planned production at its Nechalacho rare earths project in Canada. “In terms of the time frame, we are currently working on a schedule to commence production next year,” Geoff said.

In the interview Geoff provided an update on Vital Metal’s offtake agreements and business model. Vital Metals has a management team with experience in building and operating rare earth plants. He also explained what the company is doing to ensure reduced capital cost and time to market.

To access the complete interview subscribe to the Technology Metals Show and get exclusive access to member-only content through this exclusive site. Or Log-In Here for the latest conversations, debates, updates and interviews with the leaders, thought leaders and investors focused on issues relating to sustainability in the critical materials sector.

For more information on the Technology Metals Show email us at info@technologymetals.com or reach us direct at +1 (416) 546-9233.

Vital Metals aims to become the lowest cost producer of mixed rare earths oxide outside of China

Demand for secure supply of rare earths grows with technology and electric vehicles

We have known about this ”problem” for more than 20 years. You don’t have to be sinophobic, but if you are a manufacturer who relies on the sourcing of Rare Earth Elements (REEs) for your manufacturing outputs, maybe you should be. China still counts for about 80% of the world’s REE production. They have dominated the world of rare earths since the late 1990s, but growing reliance on technology requires more and more of the somewhat obscure but necessary REE minerals to create our electronic gadgets and increasingly, electric vehicle and accessory components.

Enter Vital Metals Limited, (VML: ASX) an Australian listed global explorer of rare earths. While their initial impact may be small in the future supply-chain for REEs, they are an important part of the global movement for the diversification of REE production from a concentrated source – think eliminating the OPEC dominance of oil production 50 years ago and how the world succeeded (mostly) with that.

OK – what is a rare earth element and why are they important? There are technically 15 REEs, although two others are generally included as they have similar characteristics. They are further broken down into “light” REEs that are produced globally (and are in abundance) and “heavy” REEs that are produced mostly in China and are in limited supply. Heavy REEs are in demand for their usage in high technology and clean-energy applications. The US military is buying these from China to manufacture – among other things – their armored vehicles, precision-guided weapons, batteries and night vision goggles. China is not the enemy, but at the very least the global supplier is not considered a “friendly”.

REEs are mined. Mining of these elements is usually in remote and not-so-hospitable locations. Any region that has REE potential that is close to accessible infrastructure should be on the list of “mines to be developed”.

Vital Metals has two of these projects, one in Canada and one in Africa. Their Nechalachco rare earths project in the Canadian Northwest Territories (NWT) on the edge of Great Slave Lake is scheduled to commence the production of rare earth oxide in the first half of 2021. Everything is on track to meet this production schedule as a result of years of previous work on the project (and expenditures of more than $100 million), and the design of the project parameters is aimed at early cash flow (and low capital costs) of a production stream that is highly desirable to end users.

On August 22, 2020, Vital Metals announced a binding term sheet for the construction and operation of a rare earth extraction plant to produce a mixed rare earth carbonate product. Significantly, the plant will be located adjacent to the Saskatchewan Research Council’s (SRC) planned separation plant which will be able to convert rare earth carbonate mixes to commercial grade rare earth oxides. Vital’s plant is expected to be operational in Q3-2021 with feedstock from their Nechalachco mining project.

Most people do not know that the SRC has almost a decade of expertise in REEs (associated with uranium mining in Saskatchewan) and recently announced the construction of a rare earth processing facility in Saskatchewan, the first of its kind in Canada. The SRC facility is expected to be operational in late 2022. It is hard to overestimate the importance of Vital Metals’ rare earth extraction plant being built in the neighborhood of the SRC facility.

Vital Metals’ Nechalacho rare earths project

Source: company presentation

The team at Vital are recognized for their expertise in the global rare earth element arena including all necessary elements of mining, processing, geology and marketing. The devil really is in the details, and Vital’s team has a cost and time effective strategy to deliver early production and cash flow. Remote locations require extensive planning and timing is everything as mining and processing equipment can only be delivered and setup during certain weather windows.

The company’s market capitalization is only about A$26 million. They estimate that developing the first mine in northern Canada will require less than A$20 million total capital cost for their first project (North-T, 100% interest), some of which can be funded by future generated cash flow. There is also significant potential upside in the area for exploration and production expansions, which would likely also be funded by internally generated cash flow. The company has a plan to develop the bigger Tardiff Project by 2024, aiming for a 20 year mine life and leveraging off existing infrastructure as the “next phase” in the area.

Vital Metals’ second REE project is in Tanzania, with rail and power infrastructure within approximately 10 km of their 90% owned Wigu Hill Project. Previous owners spent approximately $10 million and management is of the view that this is a high grade, potential world class resource. This asset has an older NI 43-101 evaluation report attributing to it 3.3 Mt at 2.6% REO.

The global movement away from China as the main source of rare earth elements has been underway for a number of years. The world always knew that as technology developed REEs would become more and more important, but with the development of electric vehicles in particular it is now becoming increasingly apparent that there is a need for more secure and friendly sources of REEs. Vital Minerals’ aim is to become a global player in the production of REEs. Their expertise, projects and potential appear to have put them squarely on this path.


See also video: Interview with Vital Metals’ Managing Director Geoff Atkins on their rare earths production and new extraction facility.

Geoff Atkins on Vital Metals’ 2021 rare earths production and new extraction facility

InvestorIntel’s Tracy Weslosky speaks with Geoff Atkins, Managing Director of Vital Metals Limited (ASX: VML), about Vital Metals’ Nechalacho rare earths project in Canada.

“Nechalacho is on track to be in production next year,” Geoff said. “We are constructing an extraction facility with SRC [Saskatchewan Research Council] and that will take our product from Nechalacho and produce a mixed rare earth carbonate product.”

Geoff went on to provide an update on Vital Metals’ management team. “Our entire team has been involved in Lynas and some of them have also been involved in Northern Minerals’ Browns Range Project,” he said. “We have 10-15 years’ experience in building and operating rare earth plants.”

Commenting on the competitive advantages of Vital Metals Geoff said, “The bottom line is about being low cost. From a capital cost perspective, we are looking at under AU$20 million to build this plant. The second is near term operation. We are going to be operation within 12 months.”

To watch the complete interview, click here

Disclaimer: Vital Metals Limited is an advertorial member of InvestorIntel Corp.

Vital Metals new Rare Earths Extraction Plant planned adjacent to SRC’s Separation Plant

Vital Metals on track to become a rare earths carbonate producer in 2021

In news out today rare earths carbonate developer Vital Metals Limited (ASX: VML) (‘Vital’), through its 100% owned subsidiary Cheetah Resources, has signed a binding Term Sheet with the Saskatchewan Research Council (‘SRC’) to negotiate definitive agreements for the construction and operation of a Rare Earth Extraction Plant to produce a mixed rare earth carbonate product. The capital cost estimate of the Rare Earth Extraction Plant is A$5.25m.

The Rare Earth Extraction Plant is planned to be located adjacent to a recently announced Rare Earth Separation Plant in Saskatchewan, Canada, and could provide a rare earth carbonate feedstock to produce a commercial grade separated rare earth oxide. The proximity makes it natural for SRC’s Separation Plant to be a potential customer of Vital/Cheetah’s mixed rare earth carbonate product from their planned Extraction Plant.

Vital Metals’ Managing Director Geoff Atkins comments

“The signing of this Term Sheet with SRC marks an important milestone for Vital and the development of the Nechalacho Project,” said Vital Metals’ Managing Director Geoff Atkins. “Whilst the Definitive Agreements continue to be finalised in line with the Term Sheet, the Company is excited about the prospect of the construction and operation of a rare earth demonstration extraction plant, as well as it being co-located with SRC’s recently announced rare earth separation plant. Being the only rare earth project in Canada with near term production capability, co-located with Canada’s only Separation Facility, provides Vital the opportunity to be a cornerstone of the North America Critical Minerals Strategy.”

Vital Metals low CapEx strategy to become a rare earths carbonate producer in Canada

Traditionally rare earth miners would look to build a huge plant to make a rare earths end product, however Vital Metals has a different strategy to reach production quicker and with a much lower CapEx, as well as supporting a much needed non-China rare earths supply chain.

Vital is an explorer and developer with highly prospective mineral projects, focusing on their world-class rare earth Nechalacho Project in Canada. Their strategy is to be the largest independent supplier of clean mixed rare earth feedstock outside of China, with a goal to produce a minimum 5,000 tonnes of contained rare earth oxide (REO) by 2025. A key component to the plan is a much smaller scale plant with an extremely low CapEx of just A$20m to produce rare earth carbonate. Subject to the various hurdles such as funding, Vital Metals hopes to begin production at their Nechalacho Project in 2021. Once in production, Vital’s strategy is to generate low cost near-term cash flow to fund the development of large-scale operations.

Vital Metals Nechalacho Project and Stage 1 strategy


Vital owns two world class rare earth projects – Nechalacho in Canada with ~95mt at 1.46% TREO, and Wigu Hill in Tanzania with 3.3mt at 2.6% TREO.

The Nechalacho Project (Canada)

The Nechalacho Project is a rare earth project located in Northwest Territories, Canada. The current resource estimate is 94.7mt at 1.46% REO (measured, indicated and inferred). The North T Zone at Nechalacho hosts a high-grade resource of 101,000 tonnes at 9.01% LREO (2.2% NdPr). Vital is targeting production of rare earth oxide in 2021 with early production from the North T starter pit.

More than $120 million has been spent by previous owners on drilling, permitting and project development at Nechalacho, which includes a 40-person camp and airstrip. The Project is fully permitted for a 600kt mining and ore sorting operation and is 100km from Yellowknife. The local infrastructure is well established with access to the Canadian National Railway at Hay River. Access to the site is via barge in summer and ice road in winter.

The metallurgy is a simple process involving a 35%+ initial beneficiation via ore sorting and 97% recovery into solution via hydrochloric acid using an industry standard process.

Vital has already completed detailed engineering for the ore sorting plant, defined capital and operating costs, and begun site preparation works. Off-take negotiations are reported to be progressing well with a number of non-China buyers.

Vital Metals next steps and map showing the Tardiff Zones

Source: company presentation

Management is highly experienced. For example, Managing Director Geoff Atkins has 25 years of project and corporate development experience, including four years as Corporate Planning Manager at Lynas Corporation where he oversaw the strategic planning process and the development of the Mt Weld Concentration Plant and Lynas Advance Materials Plant in Malaysia.

Today’s news from Vital suggests that, assuming progress continues successfully, the SRC will support Vital in its construction and operation of their Nechalacho Project. Subject to execution of definitive agreements, processing operations are planned to start in the third quarter of 2021.

The current market cap of Vital Metals is A$52m.

New rare earths processing facility announced in Appia Energy’s backyard

Government announcement is more good news following Appia’s successful results and expansion

Any mining company will tell you that success is the result of a combination of good decisions and good fortune, and Appia Energy Corp. (CSE: API |OTCQB: APAAF) (“Appia”) has recently had both.

On August 28  the Saskatchewan Research Council (“SRC“) and the Government of Saskatchewan announced their plan to develop a “first-of-its-kind” Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan, Canada – essentially in Appia’s Alces Lake high grade rare earths project’s backyard. This is a highly significant announcement as it has enormous potential to benefit Appia down the track, as they can potentially leverage of what is already provided by the local government. The facility is planned to be fully operational in late 2022 and will be capable of processing both hard rock ores (monazite and bastnaesite), and converting them into saleable individual rare earth oxides. This matches perfectly with Appia’s shorter term needs and would be North America’s first rare earths processing facility.

Speaking exclusively to InvestorIntel, Appia President and CEO, Tom Drivas, welcomed the news. “Appia congratulates the Saskatchewan Research Council and the Government of Saskatchewan for their initiative to develop a first-of-a-kind rare earth processing plant in Saskatchewan, Canada,” he told InvestorIntel. “Appia is very pleased and excited to learn that the Saskatoon rare earth processing plant will be up and running by the end of 2022, especially since it is in such close proximity to Appia’s high-grade critical rare earth Alces Lake project. Having the SRC plant in the same province as our project will substantially benefit Appia and its shareholders. Appia’s Alces Lake project’s rare earths are hosted in monazite, which the SRC plant will be processing. Appia has a well-established working relationship with SRC.”

This comes on the heels of a recent string of exploration and other news for Appia. In July 2020 Appia reported a 1.0 meter channel sample line grading 0.471 wt% total rare earth oxide (“TREO”) at Appia’s Loranger Property. Appia also found over 65 metres of continuous uranium mineralization at surface grading 0.018 wt% U3O8 at their Eastside Property.

“The composite U3O8 grades from Eastside are comparable to other world-class open pit uranium mines,” said Appia Vice-President, Exploration and Development, James Sykes, “such as the Rössing and Husab uranium mines in Namibia. Based on historic assay results and those obtained from Line 3 of Area 51, we believe zones with higher uranium grades are possible on the Property. The Property remains underexplored.”

On August 4 Appia announced that it had staked 8,014 additional acres at its high-grade rare earth Alces Lake Property, expanding the total property to an area of 17,577 hectares (43,434 acres). The new staking around Hawker ensures that all of the historic surface occurrences and potential geological trends are located within the Alces Lake Property. The two new land acquisitions now provide Appia with an additional 11 km of prospective trends to explore for additional high-grade rare earth element and uranium zones, bringing the total to 41 km along a continuous regional geological trend.

On August 6 Appia announced that they had discovered at least seven surface rare earth and uranium zones on the Alces Lake Project. Mr. James Sykes said: “We continue to discover more of the REE mineral system at surface, and for many kilometers outside of the main area where we’ve been focusing exploration for the past couple of years. This suggests we’re looking at a very large system across the property and also at depth.”

Some uses for rare earths and hence a strong decade ahead


The Alces Lake Property (100% owned by Appia)

The Alces Lake property has monazite ore that is enriched in valuable critical rare earth elements, particularly Neodymium (Nd), Praseodymium (Pr), Dysprosium (Dy), and Terbium (Tb). These four elements account for between 23-25% of the TREO, or ~85% of the potential value at Alces Lake. Alces Lake hosts the 2nd highest average REE grade in the world. At a 4 wt% Total Rare Earth Oxides (TREO) cutoff, Alces Lake average grade is exceptionally high at 16.65 wt% TREO. The Alces Lake Project’s rare earths are near surface and hence suitable for an open pit mine. Permitting should be smooth being in northern Saskatchewan Canada and the CapEx and OpEx should be reasonably low given the good grades and near surface resource. Finally the recent development by the Government of Saskatchewan to develop a “first-of-its-kind” Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan is extremely promising for Appia.

Appia Energy Alces Lake Project has one of the highest grade rare earths in the world with favorable monazite ore


Closing remarks

Appia Energy continues to expand their rare earths and uranium resource potential via a very significant neighboring land acquisition and further exploration in their Summer campaign. Phase 1 has already uncovered numerous targets and phase 2 plans 2,000 to 3,000m of new diamond drilling on their Alces Lake Project.

The announced new SRC Saskatchewan rare earths processing facility is a potential game changer for Appia. All the pieces of the puzzle are coming into place – very high grade rare earths, expanded land package with exploration upside and success, and finally a nearby processing facility. As the renewable energy and EV boom take off this decade the demand for a secure supply of western-made rare earths will intensify. It is starting to look like Appia Energy can be a significant player one day with continued good results and good fortune.