The farce that is the Junior Explorer Website

I was reviewing a project this week, a Cu-Ni-PGE advanced stage project in North America. On my way to their NI 43-101 technical report I had to wade through what is the usual marsh of marketing rubbish that is known as the “junior explorer website”. I review a lot of early and advanced stage projects and I can count on my one hand websites that I have come across that are actually attempting to present their results in a truthful and conservative (wise) way.

In the mud!

Me, try to get valuable information from a junior explorer website. (Photo: http://www.dailymail.co.uk)

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Breaking down the feasibility process: Should we wait until the final feasibility study to consider business factors?

So far we have looked at the scoping and the pre-feasibility phases of the feasibility process. Of all the possible scenarios considered during the pre-feasibility study, the best scenario is selected and only it is then taken forward as the foundation for the final (a.k.a. definitive) feasibility study. This scenario will include the best understanding of the geological model and the accompanying resource estimation, details around the mining and recovery method, to which then a more accurate costing estimation, market understanding and execution strategy is applied to answer the fundamental question: “What will it be?” What will this resource be? What will this investment be? This question is broad (covering all aspects of the project in as much depth as possible) yet singular in focus (all things considered, including unconsidered things!, is this a feasible investment?).

Sick wave!

It just seemed very feasible to include this awesome photo in this post!

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Breaking down the feasibility process: One simple graph that explains pre-feasibility

The feasibility study process is critical in mineral exploration as it is the best opportunity the project owner will have to define what the project could, should and will be. In my previous post, we looked at the scoping phase of the feasibility process and how it is responsible for answering the question: “What could the project be?”. The next phase of the process is known as the pre-feasibility study and addresses the question: “What should the project be?” This is arguably the most important study in the feasibility process for any organisation. I will explain why I hold this opinion, but let’s first define the practicalities of the pre-feasibility study.

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Breaking down the feasibility process: The Scoping Phase

The feasibility assessment process is important as it is the fundamental way in which project potential, and essentially, value is assessed and further more allows the quantification of risk associated with this value. Importantly, each step of the study process, from scoping and desk study phase through to final bankable feasibility, should incrementally and realistically add value to the project and so secure potential for return on investment. When the process is not well defined, adhered to, or critical decision gates held in low regard, value can either be destroyed or value can be misrepresented (inflated).

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Post from the field: Termite mound sampling?

Today I am writing from the field, connecting with the fastest, most rural internet connection I have every had the privilege of connecting to! And what a day it was! The site where I am currently working is one of the few near-equatorial, semi arid regions in the world and is far from anything and everything, they way I love it! Apart from a very short rainy season, the rest of the year is blistering hot and dry. From about 10 am the temperature starts flirting with 40C and then it only goes up. I made the mistake of mapping the largest mountain in the region over the heat of the day and at one point had a real fear that my heart was going to explode! Most of the way was through thorn thicket and wood land, looking for fresh outcrop, a rare commodity in these parts.

The view from the top of the mountain.

The view from the top of the mountain.

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