U.S. Energy Corp./Crested Corp. d/b/a USECC Signs Memorandum of Agreement With State of Utah for Shootaring Uranium Mill.
RIVERTON, Wyo., March 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- U.S. Energy Corp. and Crested Corp. (BULLETIN BOARD: CBAG) , d/b/a as "USECC", today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between the Utah Division of Radiation Control and USEG's subsidiary, Plateau Resources Limited, Inc. (Plateau). The MOA allows the State of Utah to allocate staff and consultants to complete the review process requested by Plateau in March 2005 to transfer the Shootaring Mill license from "reclamation" to "full operational" status.
The Shootaring Canyon Mill is owned 100% by Plateau, a wholly-owned subsidiary of USEG. Crested Corp., a majority-owned subsidiary of USEG, has assumed 50% of Plateau's obligation and is entitled to 50% of the operating cash flows from the Shootaring Mill, which is one of only four remaining licensed uranium mills in the USA.
"We certainly appreciate the fact that the Utah Division of Radiation Control is working diligently with Plateau to complete our license amendment request in a timely fashion," commented Hal Herron, President of Plateau Resources Limited, Inc. "Plateau controls a number of nearby uranium mineral properties and stockpiles of uranium mineralized material that we consider sufficient to provide feedstock material for the Mill for the foreseeable future. Resumption of operations at the Mill will provide significant economic benefits to Garfield and neighboring counties, as well as the State of Utah, while helping to provide uranium fuel to America's environmentally clean nuclear energy plants."
"U.S. Energy and Crested Corp. are positioning themselves to become the next U.S. uranium producer," observed Keith Larsen, Chief Executive Officer of U.S. Energy Corp. "The MOA and ongoing discussions with the staff at UDRC suggest that the operational license may be received by Plateau in the near future. That is our goal."
"The spot price for uranium (U3O8), which has more than quadrupled in the past three years, reached $40.00 per pound on March 13, 2006, and we expect it to continue trending higher as the year progresses," added Mark Larsen, President of U.S. Energy Corp. "Spot prices at a 25-year high clearly illustrate that new uranium production must come on line to address the inability of current mines to supply the requirements of the world's 440 operating nuclear power plants and the more than 40 nuclear plants that are under construction or on the drawing boards. We continue to move towards our goal of producing uranium in the U.S. in the near future."
ABOUT U.S. ENERGY CORP. AND CRESTED CORP.
U.S. Energy Corp. and its majority-owned subsidiary, Crested Corp., are engaged in a joint venture known as USECC that conducts various business activities, primarily associated with natural resources. Through a number of subsidiaries, including Sutter Gold Mining Inc., Plateau Resources Limited, Inc., U.S. Moly Corp, U.S. Uranium Ltd. and USECC, they own various interests or properties prospective for gold, uranium, vanadium and molybdenum.
This news release includes statements which may constitute "forward-looking" statements, usually containing the words "believe," "estimate," "project," "expect," or similar expressions. These statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements inherently involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. Factors that would cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, future trends in mineral prices, the availability of capital, competitive factors, and other risks.
The profitable mining and processing of uranium and vanadium will depend on many factors: Obtaining properties in proximity to the Shootaring mill to keep transportation costs economic; delineation through extensive drilling and sampling of sufficient volumes of mineralized material, with sufficient grades, to make mining and processing economic over time; continued sustained high prices for uranium oxide and vanadium; obtaining the capital required to upgrade the Shootaring mill and add a vanadium circuit; and obtaining and continued compliance with operating permits.
The profitable mining and processing of gold will depend on many factors, including receipt of final permits and keeping in compliance with permit conditions; delineation through extensive drilling and sampling of sufficient volumes of mineralized material, with sufficient grades, to make mining and processing economic over time; continued sustained high prices for gold; and obtaining the capital required to initiate and sustain mining operations and build and operate a gold processing mill.
We have not yet obtained feasibility studies on any of our mineral properties. These studies would establish the economic viability, or not, of the different properties based on extensive drilling and sampling, the design and costs to build and operate gold and uranium/vanadium mills, the cost of capital, and other factors. Feasibility studies can take many months to complete. We have not established any reserves (economic deposits of mineralized materials) on any of our uranium/vanadium or gold properties, and future studies may indicate that some or all of the properties will not be economic to put into production. The properties have had extensive work conducted by prior owners to establish the deposits of molybdenum, mine planning and other ancillary activities. This data will have to be updated to determine the viability of starting mining operations. Obtaining mining and other permits to begin mining the molybdenum property may be very difficult, and, like any mining operation, capital requirements for a molybdenum mining operation will be substantial.
By making these forward-looking statements, the Companies undertake no obligation to update these statements for revision or changes after the date of this release.
CONTACT: Keith G. Larsen, CEO, or Mark Larsen, President, both of U.S. Energy Corp., +1-307-856-9271