Exploration & Processing - Fall 2010 - (Page 48)
WESTERN COPPER CORP .
BY RUSS GAGER
ACCURATELY CALCULATING THE COST OF MINING A MINERAL AND COMPARING IT TO THE COMMODITY’S FLUCTUATING PRICE IS THE EUREKA MOMENT.
MINING FOR THE DATA
he days of guys just hiking into the mountains with pick-axes and coming back millionaires are over. For decades, the number of permits, licenses and environmental considerations have been increasing to the point that now, a company can make a living just getting permission to start a mine and then selling it to a mining company. “It takes three to five years to get projects permitted now, but you have to have a longterm view,” notes Paul West-Sells, president and COO of Western Copper Corp. That is how Western Silver Corp. became Western Copper Corp. The company’s managers moved over from the silver company when it was sold to Glamis, a large mining company. “We’re looking at the model of Western Silver, where we expand the size of the deposit, apply good engineering and get it permitted and ready to go, and sell it off or sell the company,” West-Sells explains. “It’s the business model we’re following. We basically turn a mineral deposit into a real asset, into something that can make a company money and look at divesting it.” In mining, speculation goes with the territory. Now Western Copper Corp. is advancing four major projects that are in various stages of development. The most advanced one is the Carmacks project. The next most developed site is the Casino project – which has been known about for decades, but never had significant engineering studies performed on it. The company also has the Island Copper and Redstone projects in its pipeline. Engineering Expertise The secret to striking it rich when developing mines is obtaining the engineering expertise to calculate the cost of mining a mineral compared to its market price, which can fluctuate substantially. “In order to get a good prefeasibility or feasibility study, you need to hire a reputable engineering firm – you don’t do that in-house,” West-Sells recommends. “M3 Engineering and Technology, Tucson, Ariz., has done all the project engineering for Western Copper. “We’re drawing on a relationship we have with them from the Western Silver days,” he adds. “So, we feel very comfortable, and we know them well.” Another necessity is having a skilled staff to manage the engineering firm. “You need to have people that
Western Copper Corp. is advancing four major mining projects at present – its Carmacks and Casino projects are the most developed, while the Island Copper and Redstone projects are in the pipeline waiting to begin development.
Western Copper Corp. www.westerncoppercorp.com Headquarters: Vancouver Employees: 13 Service: Exploration and develPaul West-Sells, president and COO: “We basically turn a min-
opment of copper, gold and molybdenum mines
eral deposit into a real asset, into something that can make a company money and look at divesting it.”
48 | EXPLORATION-PROCESSING.COM
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Exploration & Processing - Fall 2010
Exploration & Processing - Fall 2010
Profitable Path to Renewable Energy
Dynamic Air Shelters Ltd.
Elevating Boats LLC
Gazelle’s Oilfield Services Ltd.
International Alliance Group
Lydford Mining Co.
Offshore Inland Marine, Industrial & Oilfield Services
Q.B. Johnson Manufacturing Inc.
Thermo Design Engineering
Western Camp Services Ltd.
Western Copper Corp.
Alberta Welltest Incinerators
Blakely Construction Co. Inc.
Bluewater Constructors Inc.
Energy Fabrication Inc.
OFM Pump Inc.
Lithium Americas Corp.
New Dominion Construction Inc.
Owen Sound Ledgerock Ltd.
Reagan Equipment Co. Inc.
Swick Mining Services (Canada) Inc.
American Oil & Gas – The Goliath Project
Africo Resources Ltd.
American Tank Company Inc.
Atlas Copco Geotechnical Drilling & Exploration
Clarkco Oilfield Services Inc.
Energy Fuels Resources Corp.
ESA Renewables LLC
GPR Industries (1994) Ltd.
Helio Resource Corp.
Landdrill International Inc.
Laurel Aggregates Inc.
LoneStar Energy Fabrication
NioGold Mining Corp.
Pacific Booker Minerals Inc.
Phoenix Exploration Co.
Premium Rock Bit Corp.
Queenston Mining Inc.
RAE Engineering & Inspection Ltd.
Goldcorp – Red Lake Gold Mines
C-FER Technologies Inc.
Eden Stone and Valders Stone & Marble Inc.
Exploration & Processing - Fall 2010