Establishing a Uranium Reserve Supports U.S. Uranium Mining and Restores Viability of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle
CENTENNIAL, Colo., April 27, 2020, Westwater Resources, Inc. (Nasdaq: WWR), an energy materials development company, commented on last week’s report from the Nuclear Fuel Working Group (NFWG): Restoring America’s Competitive Nuclear Advantage: A Strategy to Assure U.S. National Security. The NFWG was formed in July 2019 by President Trump as a response to a Section 232 investigation from the U.S. Department of Commerce into the effect of imports of uranium on the national security of the United States.
The NFWG agreed with the need to mitigate the near-term risks of losing American uranium production capacity due to market factors, while considering actions that would support the entire front-end of the nuclear fuel cycle. This approach recommended is a multi-year effort (10-year timeline), which would include a commitment by the Federal Government to provide funding for a competitive procurement for U.S. uranium mining. This would provide assurance of availability of uranium in the event of a market disruption and support strategic U.S. fuel cycle capabilities.
Christopher M. Jones, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “The policies contained within the Nuclear Fuel Working Group report make sense for America’s energy security, while leveling the playing field for American uranium companies. Westwater owns two licensed uranium processing facilities in Texas, along with 199,700 acres of uranium mineral rights in New Mexico and Texas. The Federal Government’s support for domestic uranium production would enable Westwater to better compete in these markets, creating American jobs and supporting local communities.”
About Westwater Resources
Westwater Resources (NASDAQ: WWR) is focused on developing energy-related materials. The Company’s battery-materials projects include the Coosa Graphite Project — the most advanced natural flake graphite project in the contiguous United States — and the associated Coosa Graphite Mine located across 41,900 acres (~17,000 hectares) in east-central Alabama. In addition, the Company maintains lithium mineral properties in prospective lithium brine basins in Nevada and Utah. Westwater’s uranium projects are located in Texas and New Mexico. In Texas, the Company has two licensed and currently idled uranium processing facilities and approximately 11,000 acres (~4,400 hectares) of prospective in-situ recovery uranium projects. In New Mexico, the Company controls mineral rights encompassing approximately 188,700 acres (~76,000 hectares) in the prolific Grants Mineral Belt, which is one of the largest concentrations of sandstone-hosted uranium deposits in the world. Incorporated in 1977 as Uranium Resources, Inc., Westwater also owns an extensive uranium information database of historic drill hole logs, assay certificates, maps, and technical reports for the western United States. For more information, visit www.westwaterresources.net.
This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions and are identified by words such as “expects,” “estimates,” “projects,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “could,” and other similar words. All statements addressing events or developments that WWR expects or anticipates will occur in the future, including but not limited to statements relating to development and future production from the Company’s uranium portfolio, the future price of uranium, and the ultimate implementation of the recommendations contained within the NFWG report, including without limitation the adoption of funds for the Uranium Reserve, are forward-looking statements. Because they are forward-looking, they should be evaluated in light of important risk factors and uncertainties. These risk factors and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, (a) the Company’s ability to successfully integrate Alabama Graphite Corporation’s business into its own, and the risk that additional analysis of the Coosa Graphite Project may result in revisions to the findings of WWR’s initial optimization study; (b) the Company’s ability to raise additional capital in the future; (c) spot price and long-term contract price of graphite, lithium, vanadium and uranium; (d) risks associated with our operations and the operations of our partners such as Dorfner Anzaplan, including the impact of COVID-19; (e) operating conditions at the Company’s projects; (f) government and tribal regulation of the graphite industry, the lithium industry, the vanadium industry, the uranium industry, and the power industry, and government support for domestic uranium production and nuclear power; (g) world-wide graphite, lithium, vanadium and uranium supply and demand, including the supply and demand for lithium-based batteries; (h) maintaining sufficient financial assurance in the form of sufficiently collateralized surety instruments; (i) unanticipated geological, processing, regulatory and legal or other problems the Company may encounter in the jurisdictions where the Company operates or intends to operate, including in Alabama, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, and Nevada; (j) the ability of the Company to enter into and successfully close acquisitions or other material transactions; (k) the results of the Company’s lithium brine exploration activities at the Columbus Basin and Sal Rica projects, and the possibility that future exploration results may be materially less promising than initial exploration result; (i) any graphite, lithium, vanadium or uranium discoveries not being in high-enough concentration to make it economic to extract the metals; (m) currently pending or new litigation or arbitration; and (n) other factors which are more fully described in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should any of the Company’s underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those currently anticipated. In addition, undue reliance should not be placed on the Company’s forward-looking statements. Except as required by law, the Company disclaims any obligation to update or publicly announce any revisions to any of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release.