2012 N o v E M B E r #3-10
Potassium In Egnar: A Possible
$600+Million/Year Economic Bonanza
hosts major potash solution mining operations to the north
BLM Seeks Public Comment on Environmental
in the sedimentary basins of Saskatchewan, Canada. It
Assessment for Potassium Prospecting and
contains a large number of laterally extensive salt hori-
Exploration Application Near Egnar
zons, several of which contain beds where potash-rich salts
DOLORES - On Friday, Oct. 26, the Bureau of Land
predominate. Drilling logs from earlier regional oil explo-
Management's Tres Rios Field Office posted an envi-
ration indicate that some of these beds reach economically
ronmental assessment that analyzes Potassium (potash)
viable widths and, importantly, primarily consist of the
Prospecting Permits and the associated exploration
soluble potassium-rich salt, sylvite (potassium chloride).
plan submitted by RM Potash(Red Metal Limited) for
Potash is a group of potassium minerals (oxides, chlorides,
The proposed plan is located about 15 miles north of
sulphates, nitrates and carbonates) used for fertilizer pro-
Dove Creek and U.S. Highway 491 (aka US 666) near
duction, with the most commonly extracted being potas-
Egnar within San Miguel and Dolores counties. If the
sium chloride salts, deposited as sedimentary salt beds
application is approved, the operator could apply for a
formed by the evaporation of ancient seas.
lease to begin exploration later this year.
The main potash mineral of potential economic interest on
"Exploration will help determine the presence of a min-
the Colorado project is sylvite, a high-potassium chloride
eral deposit, and core drilling helps confirms the potash
salt (KCl) containing 63% potassium (K2O) by weight. Syl-
thickness and grade," said James Blair, BLM geologist.
vite is water soluble and the most favoured salt mineral for
"We look forward to reviewing public comment as we
potash solution mining. The sylvite-bearing rock is called
consider the application for exploratory activities. If
the applicant determines that a valuable deposit is present and decides to
sylvinite and typically contains about 10-50% sylvite mixed with halite, minor
develop the resource, then the applicant can apply for a potash lease."
shale beds and other salts. The main saleable product after mining and pro-
The six-permit application covers a total of 9,954 acres. The total disturbance
cessing of the sylvinite is muriate of potassium (MOP) a sylvite and halite mix
area is estimated at about 19 acres. This includes core holes limited to a 250
containing greater than 95% sylvite.
foot by 250 foot pad (~1.4 acres) and associated road improvements (up to 20
feet wide) on three access roads.
Potash, being a high value bulk commodity and a water soluble salt is com-
Potash is the common name for a group of naturally occurring minerals
mercially mined throughout the world from deposits at significant depths
containing the element potassium (K), which is a leasable mineral under the
utilising conventional underground mining or solution mining techniques.
Mineral Leasing Act of 1920. Potash is most commonly used as a component
Conventional mining practices are used to about 1200 metres depth in
of fertilizer, but is also used in a variety of other chemical and industrial ap-
Canada after which solution mining techniques are employed. Compared to
plications, such as steel manufacture, ice melting and water softening.
conventional underground mining, solution mining offers significantly lower
Red Metal has applied for these potash prospecting permits based on the
up-front capital cost and an ability to go into production early which can re-
completion of a detailed study commissioned for the company by the leading
sult in a higher rate of return on capital. Solution mining also provides a po-
international potash consultants, Agapito Associates Inc. The study identified
tentially safer working environment and can produce a smaller environmen-
multiple potash-rich horizons within the application area and concluded that
tal foot print. Geological factors that effect a projects ability to be profitably
there was high potential for defining economically significant potash re-
solution mined include the mineralogy (sylvite preferred), grade (amount of
sources. The company is targeting economic resources capable of producing
sylvite), thickness, depth, dip and continuity of the potash horizon as well as
between 200,000 and 2 million tons of potash per year.
the ambient temperature of the wall rocks.
The basinal stratigraphy of the Paradox Basin has similarities to that which
A variety of production well configurations for solution (continued on pg3)
Debut: Medicine In
U.S. Capitol Tree
Farm To School
Carlos Mencia at
Harmony... Pg 6
Tour Begins... Pg 11
Resources... Pg 9
the Avalon... Pg 12