Emerald IsleEmerald Isle Copper Oxide Deposit
Napier Ventures Inc. has entered into an asset purchase agreement with Emerald Copper Corp., whereby the company will acquire a 100-per-cent interest in 57 unpatented mining claims in Mohave county, Arizona, as well as 21 unpatented mining claims in Dolores county, Colorado.
Napier plans to focus on the Emerald Isle property. The Emerald Isle property is located entirely on federal Bureau of Land Management-managed lands on unpatented mining claims situated in Mohave county, Arizona. The mine is about 20 miles north of Kingman, Ariz., and about 1.5 miles west of the Mineral Park copper porphyry.
Considerable exploration has been done at the Emerald Isle property in the past by several companies, including El Paso Mining and Milling Company, Arimetco, St. Genevieve Resources Ltd. and Sierra Resources Group Inc. Historical mining at the Emerald Isle property was of high-grade oxide copper by underground methods, followed by a small open-pit copper recovery by leaching and electrowinning. Past production is estimated by the U.S. Bureau of Mines at 1.4 million tonnes averaging 1 per cent copper.
In March, 2006, Roscoe Postle Associates Inc. prepared a mineral resource estimate for St. Genevieve in accordance with National Instrument 43-101, which provided indicated mineral resources of the Emerald Isle copper deposit as 2.22 million tonnes with an average grade of 0.62 per cent total copper (based on compilation of 135 drill holes totalling in excess of 30,000 feet, a total copper cut-off grade of 0.3 per cent total copper and 10-foot minimum vertical thickness).
Napier is not aware of any more recent mineral resource estimates. No qualified person has done sufficient work to classify the mineral resource estimate in the Roscoe technical report as current mineral resources, and Napier is not treating the historical estimate as a current mineral resource.
Copper mineralization at the Emerald Isle property is hosted by late Tertiary conglomerates and, to a lesser extent, by Quaternary alluvium and Cretaceous granitic rocks. Mineralization at Emerald Isle property is in the form of mineralized lenses contained within a paleochannel approximately a few thousand feet long and up to 750 feet wide. The source of copper at the Emerald Isle property is interpreted to be the low-grade porphyry-type copper mineralization at Alum Wash, about 3.5 miles northeast of the Emerald Isle property deposit, or the mineralized intrusion directly underlying the property.
The mineralization is characterized by dark blue to black copper oxide and carbonate-cemented conglomerate rock similar to the Exotica deposit, a satellite of the Chuquicamata copper deposit in Chile.
There is a well-defined oxide copper zone on the property at the base of the Gila conglomerate or fanglomerate. This zone, long hypothesized to originate from the Alum Wash area, is uphill and to the northeast of the Emerald Isle pit. What is not generally known is that many of the previous drill holes at Emerald Isle end in altered or unaltered Tertiary-age or Cretaceous-age intrusive material (loosely termed porphyry) and that many of these drill holes stop in what could be economic grades of mineralization. Also, based on limited geological descriptions, many holes were stopped prematurely in mineralized conglomerate. Thus, there could be a large local porphyry copper deposit immediately underlying part of the drilled area.
Although the mineralized intrusive may be cut off to the north of the pit, the southwest and northwest limits of mineralized intrusion have not been found. Essentially, there is a large mineralized porphyry system immediately underlying the oxide channel in the conglomerates, and this porphyry, though low grade, covers an area roughly 2,500 feet by 1,000 feet, open in several directions. While the 440-foot drill hole completed in 2013 did not intersect significant mineralization, anomalous copper, cadmium and zinc were noted in the analysis of the chips.
Sierra Resource Group Inc. , which also holds claims in the area, was a U.S.-based exploration and mining company which previously had an 80-per-cent ownership of its Emerald Isle property mining claims. Sierra is based in Las Vegas, Nev., and as of June, 2015, was placed into bankruptcy. As part of the bankruptcy process, certain assets of Sierra were purchased from a receiver by Sunburst Minerals LLC. Sunburst is asserting ownership of certain claims that overlap with the Emerald Isle property claims. As a result, the status of claims once held by Sierra is uncertain, and litigation is in process. Napier and its consultants have examined numerous claim posts belonging to the vendor in the field and believe them to be properly staked. Napier engaged a consultant to undertake a title review which found numerous defects in the location of many of the former Sierra claims.
Napier staked the Emerald Isle property claims with the BLM on the basis of open ground in some areas and the probability that some of the Sierra claims, particularly the mill site claims are in contravention of one or more clauses of the 1872 mining law. As a result of its review, Napier believes that Emerald Isle property claims cover a large and partly overlapping portion of the Emerald Isle property copper deposit and may be explored and developed where they do not conflict with land covered by any valid third party unpatented mining claims. Napier intends to assert its rights to and explore the Emerald Isle property with geological mapping and mineral exploration activities.
The Emerald Isle oxide copper property is a property of merit with NI-43-101 compliant resources and exploration potential at depth, as a mineralized porphyry exists under the oxide capping or channels and many drillholes stopped in mineralization. While there are some conflicting claims held by others, the present author concurs with the mineral surveyors that Emerald Copper Corp.'s claims are validly staked, cover a larger and partly overlapping portion of the Emerald Isle copper deposit, and may be explored and developed where they do not conflict with any validly staked and held claims which may co-exist.