Saturday, April 26, 2014

Northern Arizona uranium mine to extend production into 2015

The Energy Fuels company will continue mining uranium at its Pinetop mine in Northern Arizona into the first quarter of 2015, instead of putting the mine on standby status in mid-2014 as previously planned.  [Right, aerial view of Pinenut mine.  Credit, Energy Fuels, Inc.]

The company said the change is "as a result of favorable mining conditions and lower than expected costs."   Energy Fuels expects to mine approximately 250,000 lbs. of additional U3O8 from the Pinenut Mine from mid-2014 to 2015 which will be stockpiled at the mine.   The mine began production in 2013.

The company's press release says "Northern Arizona’s 'breccia pipes' contain the highest-grade uranium deposits in the U.S., and among the highest grade uranium deposits in the World, outside of Canada.  As a result, these projects are among the lowest cost sources of uranium production in Energy Fuels’ portfolio."

The company's describes the Pinenut Mine as "a fully-developed uranium mine located in northern Arizona approximately 35 miles south of the town of Fredonia, Arizona. Energy Fuels is producing at the Pinenut Mine, with the ore being processed at Energy Fuels’ White Mesa Mill. The mine site for this high-grade “breccia pipe” deposit has less than 20 acres of total surface disturbance and is situated on land managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. The mine was partially developed in the late 1980’s and a shaft was sunk to a depth of 1,350 feet. At that time, this high-grade "breccia pipe" deposit was mined and produced 526,000 lbs. of U3O8. As of September 30, 2012, there are approximately 1,037,000 lbs. of U3O8 remaining at Pinenut contained in 95,000 tons of inferred resource at an average grade of 0.54% U3O8."

The company website says "Energy Fuels is currently America’s largest conventional uranium producer, which supplied approximately 25% of the uranium produced in the United States in 2013..."

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Tucson-based Mintec acquired by Hexagon

Mintec, Inc., announced that Hexagon AB, a leading provider of design, measurement and visualization technologies, has of today entered into an agreement to acquire the company, a resource modeling, optimization, mine planning and scheduling software developer for the mining industry.

"Headquartered in Tucson, AZ, USA, Mintec has with its 232 employees grown into a global network of mining professionals providing technology, service and support in some of the most complex mining operations around the world. MineSight, the company’s modeling and mine planning brand since 1970, is well-known and respected in the industry," according to a post on the company's website.


Saturday, April 19, 2014

Kinder Morgan permits 5 wells in St Johns CO2 field

The Arizona Oil & Gas Conservation Commission approved permits (#1189-1193) to Kinder Morgan CO2 Co. for 5 wells to develop the St. John's carbon dioxide field in eastern Arizona.

Kinder Morgan plans on investing $1 billion in the CO2 operation - $700 million for field development and $300 million for a 230 mile pipeline to move the gas to a main pipeline in New Mexico that takes it to the Permian Basin oil fields where it will be used in enhanced oil recovery.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Directory of Geoscience Organizations of the World

The Geological Survey of Japan has published the 2014 version of the “Directory of Geoscience Organizations of the World.”  It includes major government and quas-government organizations of the world, relating to geological surveys and geologic research.
The online version is updated as needed at

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Meteorite fireball over central Arizona

An orange fireball seen Saturday night over the Phoenix valley, Globe, Superior and as far east as El Paso, was confirmed as a meteor, according to the only news report I've found so far, at the Arizona Republic.  

The online story includes a Channel 12 video report showing one photo taken from Papago Peak, and a view of its entry provided by a NASA meteorite tracking camera in New Mexico. 

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Kinder Morgan to invest $1 billion in St. Johns CO2-helium field and pipeline

Kinder Morgan is expected to spend about $300 million on a 213-mile pipeline to move carbon dioxide from the St. Johns field in eastern Arizona to oil fields in eastern New Mexico and West Texas to use for enhanced oil recovery, and "about $700 million to drill wells and build field gathering, treatment and compression facilities at the St. Johns field," according to a story in Phoenix Business Journal.

The report further says "The 16-inch diameter Lobos Pipeline will transport carbon dioxide from the company’s St. Johns source field in Apache County, Ariz., to its Cortez Pipeline in Torrance County, N.M., and will have an initial capacity of 300 million standard cubic feet per day."  [Right, proposed Lobos pipeline route. Credit, Kinder Morgan].   Earlier reports indicated that initially the pipeline would carry only 200 million cubic feet per day.    All of this is contingent on the company getting the required permits.

The St. Johns field is also expected to produce commercial quantities of helium, a gas in growing demand for industrial purposes.  

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Canal will extend Gulf of California into Arizona

Plans were announced today to dig a 245-mile long canal from the northern Gulf of California into southwestern Arizona to flood the region with sea water creating new economic opportunities and beach-front housing across thousands of square miles of mostly uninhabited desert.    The City of Phoenix could become one of America’s busiest seaports under the plan.

Hector Fledermaus, President of the Southwestern North America Financial Union (SNAFU) unveiled the plan at a press conference in Gila Bend, which would eventually be sunk under 150 feet of water when the project is complete.

Fledermaus said this is the biggest SNAFU project ever undertaken including canal, pumps, and a set of locks like in the Panama Canal to keep the water from draining back into the Gulf.

“We considered waiting for global warming to melt the Greenland ice cap and letting this happen naturally but decided that we wanted the big bucks now,” Fledermaus said.    “We will start platting out home sites on the beaches-to-be of the new Gulf of Arizona by June and accepting deposits from buyers by year end.”

SANFU is working with Princess Cruise Lines to make Phoenix a new port destination, and with the Tohono O’odham Tribe to launch floating casinos on their part of the new inland sea.
The Defense Department will convert part of the Goldwater Test Range in western Arizona into a submarine training base.

Potential buyers and investors can learn more at

And that's the news for April 1.