A more environmentally-friendly future will require extracting raw materials, what are known as ‘battery’ metals, from the ground, and while new economic sources of these commodities - such as copper, cobalt, and nickel - can be difficult to find in safe, pro-mining jurisdictions, Global Energy Metals Corporation (CVE:GEMC) (OTCMKTS:GBLEF) is well-positioned for that viable discovery with interests in several ‘green’ energy projects throughout the world.
“We believe that by taking an 'acquire, partner, and develop' approach with our projects that it allows for our shareholders to get strong raw material supply exposure to the battery metals space,” Global Energy Metals CEO Mitchell Smith told Proactive recently.
Smith said the company’s immediate focus is on its Nevada projects, specifically the Lovelock cobalt-nickel-copper mine. The property, which comprises 81 unpatented claims over 642 hectares, saw some limited mining activities during the 1880s, extracting grades as rich as 14% cobalt and 12% nickel.
“We’re fully permitted for drilling on that project and anticipate that upon closing a live private placement financing we’ll be able to execute on that exploration initiative in Nevada,” Smith noted.
Set to drill a former high-grade cobalt and nickel mine
Global Energy Metals has proposed eight targets for the initial 1,400 metres (m) short-hole drill program at Lovelock, aimed at confirming intersections of cobalt-nickel-copper-bearing structures within historical workings.
And should its exploration efforts prove successful, the proximity of its Nevada holdings (about 150 kilometres) to Tesla’s Gigafactory 1, the world’s largest battery production facility, is a definite plus.
“Proximity to end-use markets and customers is a central theme amongst our acquisition and investments and has never been more important given the push to localize and regionalize sourcing of material for an array of reasons, ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) and competition amongst rival powers being at the top of the list,” Smith added.
The company also has 100% ownership of three promising cobalt-copper projects in Australia. The exploration-stage Millennium project is a deposit of “significant” size that remains open for expansion. An historic resource estimate released in 2012 showed an Inferred resource of 3.1 million tonnes of 0.14% cobalt, 0.34% copper, and 0.12 grams per tonne (g/t) gold using a copper equivalent cut-off of 1.0%.
Mount Dorothy and Cobalt Ridge (collectively referred to as the Mount Isa projects), meanwhile, reside in a district that hosts many producing copper-gold and lead-zinc-silver ore bodies.
Smith said Global Energy Metals is currently looking at ways to further monetize the company’s Australian project portfolio and unlock further value, which would allow it to advance those projects without having to dilute its existing shareholders. This includes an existing “strong partnership” with Electric Royalties Ltd (CVE:ELEC) (OCTMKTS:ELECF). Earlier in the year, Global Energy Metals received 1.15 million Electric Royalties shares plus a cash payment of C$150,000 following the sale of a 0.5% gross metal royalty on three Australian-based cobalt projects.
Pending stake in a promising European nickel project
As well, the company is in the process of closing its acquisition of a 10% interest plus a 1% net smelter royalty (NSR) on the Råna nickel-copper-cobalt project in Norway, which includes the past-producing Bruvann nickel mine. Global Energy Metals considers Råna to be a drill-ready, Class-1 nickel project, with a low anticipated capex, while also being located in close proximity to a growing end-user market including FREYR AS, a Norwegian incorporated company that is developing environmentally-friendly lithium-ion based battery cell facilities in Norway.
Global Energy Metals will have a carried interest on the project and will not be responsible for any project costs until the vendor incurs more than C$1.5 million in project expenditures. The vendor or royalty holder has the right to purchase 50% of the NSR for C$1 million before commercial production begins.
And as more and more electric vehicles hit the roads globally in the coming years, investor interest in the ‘green’ economy is only expected to grow.
In the past year, the World Bank released an estimate suggesting that production of battery metals, such as graphite, lithium and cobalt, will have to increase by nearly 500% by 2050 to meet the growing demand for clean energy technologies.
For 2021, Smith said Global Energy Metals is about to close on a financing that’s going to allow the company to execute on some of its corporate building initiatives, which includes the first-ever drill program on the high-grade Lovelock Mine project and acquiring a portfolio of copper-nickel-cobalt and copper-gold-silver projects in Quebec and Idaho.
The company just released what it called “exceptional” results from a fieldwork program at the recently added, Idaho-based Monument Peak project, which includes two past-producing copper mines. Global Energy Metals is also planning for additional spring/summer reconnaissance exploration at Monument Peak, which will include the completion of a NI 43-101 compliant technical report, and which is intended to provide recommendations for an aggressive summer/fall drill program.
And with less than 18 million shares outstanding, 40% being held by management and insiders, the company has been able to tie together this multi-jurisdictional project portfolio while maintaining a relatively tight share structure.
Smith also noted that the execution of the company’s milestones and upcoming catalysts wouldn’t be possible without the strong leadership, technical ability and battery metals experience that his team, board and advisory partners bring to the table.
“The future of electrification is here. We’re at an inflection point when it comes to securing supply of the critical materials powering this e-movement. Global Energy is well-positioned to provide its shareholders with the much-needed exposure to the battery metal value chain. We’re green, we’re clean and we’re ready, the time is now,” Smith said.
Contact Sean at firstname.lastname@example.org