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"I don't think anyone with even the slightest knowledge of the company would worry unduly that they might fall into that trap. They have skilfully avoided the temptation for nearly half a century!"
haha, look, I take your point, but that said, this is not at all unusual in the global mining industry - for a deposit to be looked at over a period of decades through multiple cycles before eventually being developed. Look at Cononish gold mine... was being developed in the 90s by Fynegold Exploration (subsidiary of Toronto listed Caledonia Mining Corporation) - forgotten for a decade or more, then snapped up by Scotgold and developed into production recently. What is unusual is for one company to have been in control of the deposit for so long and not gone bankrupt or given up and relinquished or sold the project. So the unusual thing with Parys Mountain, is not the fact its been through a few cycles and not been developed yet - but the fact Anglesey Mining Plc has survived for 30+ years...
"SW ignoring my incorrect thought that Parys might be part of a giant copper field. Is it likely that the resources do on fact extend beyond the boundaries of the present site on your opinion"
I'm not a geologist, I'm not really in the business of speculation on that sort of thing. But we do know VMS deposits often form in clusters, so its possible there are further deposits in the wider Region, although finding these is not always straightforwards. Personally, at this point, I'm not interested in the wider potential, because the potential for expansion at Parys Mountain itself is so huge, there's no point going greenfield exploring for a new site when you have open mineralisation all over the place at an existing potential mine site in close proximity to existing delineated resources.
VMS deposits nearly always have multiple lenses - we know at Parys Mountain we have the Northern Copper Zone, the Engine Zone, and the White Rock Zone. I would think it very likely that within the Parys Mountain site, there are more lenses or "zones" of ore waiting to be found, and I could be almost certain there are significant lateral and depth extensions to existing zones. Those that say Parys Mountain has been over with a fine-tooth comb, and extensively studied - are completely wrong. That is utter rubbish I'm afraid, a total fallacy. Yes, a lot of geology graduates have wrote dissertations about the deposits, but that does not equal drilling and modern exploration investment has occurred here.
The facts are the site has not been significantly explored at depth, and there are multiple significant drill intersections of mineralisation that have not been followed up and are not within the current resource. The idea that the extent of mineralisation is fully understood and explored is simply untrue. I know this as a fact, but if you doubt me and want to hear someone else say it, then just watch the Jo Battershill proactiveinvestors interview from 1st October, and listen carefully to what he says.
Well said, Bob. SW’s smart and well-informed comments are an asset to us.
I regularly go walking in the Conwy Valley, and last summer brought back colourful gravel from the bed of a stream. Got home, put it in a pan, sluiced it with lots of water, watching out for that telltale glint of gold. Result: dust. Like the slimming guru’s dietary advice in the Little Britain show.... dust. “Anybody??? Dust!” My grandad went off to Canada before WW1 - to the Klondike - in the hope of striking it rich. Result? Dust!
"Consequently I would be surprised if results are anthing other than excellent and to some extent this drilling I suspect is to confirm what BOD and advisers view as near certainty."
I'd expect the drilling to move most of the inferred resources to indicated in the White Rock Zone, although some may remain. But the greater prize here is metallurgical testwork which could improve the assumptions used in the PEA, allowing greater recoveries of metals to the correct concentrates, and potentially a 5-15% uplift in total revenues, which is very significant for project economics. The main reason for this is because smelter offtake terms are very specific about the contents of metals in each concentrate - zinc smelters do not want lead contaminating their zinc concentrate, and nor do copper smelters. This mattered less in 1990, when the pilot plant was run, than it does now, as modern smelters are more sensitive to the contamination and offtake terms more onerous. All I can say with some certainty is that the revenue losses due to the contaminations are very significant for this deposit, and likely NOT a feature of the deposit, but rather of the limitations of the pilot plant in the 1990s. So if core can be obtained, and reanalysed, it is likely much better smelter revenues can be achieved in a feasibility study.
"giant copper field"
Going back to this and veering off topic a bit, there is evidence of another VMS type deposits in North Wales at Cae Coch, in the Conwy valley. And then there is actually a massive Porphyry type copper deposit further south in Snowdonia, called Coed y Brenin. It was explored by Riofinex in the 60s and 70s, and has approximately 200Mt @ 0.3% copper + "minor gold and silver". What constitutes "minor" is a matter of debate, it might be quite significant. Unfortunately its in Snowdonia National Park, which is why its been forgotten and presumed to be unviable. If there are higher grade portions they may be developed with less intrusive underground mining methods though possibly, and we know from the Woodsmith project that development in National Parks is not *impossible* - but certainly Parys Mtn is a much easier sell from a permitting point of view.
Thats pretty unlikely. I mean, to be a stickler, there are no "reserves" by the modern definition at Parys Mtn, reserves can only be declared after a positive pre-feasibility study. But presuming you mean resources - then even in this case, the purpose of the drilling campaign is to infill inferred resources, and collect core for metallurgical and geotechnical testing. When I say "infill inferred resources" what I mean is increase the drill density in the blocks of mineralisation that are categorised as inferred resources, thus allowing them to be recategorised as "indicated resources".
So its unlikely to substantially increase the total resource, it just recategorises inferred resources to indicated resources. This is significant because only indicated (and measured) resources can be used in a pre-feasibility study to form reserves - inferred resources cannot be used.
"I don't know anthing about geology and how copper seams work. But given that there is obviously plenty at Parys and interestingly historically at Llandudno and near Caernarvon latter other side of Menai strait I wonder if Parys sits in middle of giant copper field. Giving opportunity at later date to strike deals with adjoining land owners."
The answer to that direct hypothesis is unfortunately no. If you look at a geological map of Anglesey, you can see the general trend of the rock formations is NE-SW, ie. parallel to the Menai Straits. Mineralisation on Anglesey, is thus unrelated to mineralisation on the North Wales mainland, and that in turn is separate to the Great Orme (Llandudno) which is of Carboniferous age. They are different deposits of different paragenesis. That said, Parys Mountain is a VMS deposit, and these do tend to occur in clusters, so all the Ordovician host rocks in North Wales are prospective for further deposits, but that doesn't mean the whole area contains a "giant seam of copper" unfortunately.
"That said I long for the day when the company actually extracts something rather than add more and more to the reserves."
The order of the day, I'm afraid, to build a modern metal mine (or any mine of scale) is drilling, studies, more drilling, more studies. The market will eventually recognise value when there is a path to development, but long gone are the swashbuckling days of lets just get in there and start mining. That isn't going to happen, the capital required to achieve production is immense, and no one will provide the required investments, if the full Feasibility Study procedures are not followed. The procedures and methodical approach exist for a reason, to protect capital investments - even with them, mining has a reputation for being incredibly risky. Without them its a total casino, so yeah, AYM is going to do a full feasibility study, and it will take some time and investment to realise. The end result though I think will be very successful.
I don't know anthing about geology and how copper seams work. But given that there is obviously plenty at Parys and interestingly historically at Llandudno and near Caernarvon latter other side of Menai strait I wonder if Parys sits in middle of giant copper field. Giving opportunity at later date to strike deals with adjoining land owners.
South westerner would know far better than me.
That said I long for the day when the company actually extracts something rather than add more and more to the reserves.
Consequently I would be surprised if results are anthing other than excellent and to some extent this drilling I suspect is to confirm what BOD and advisers view as near certainty.