Supports the Development of the Coosa Graphite Project
CENTENNIAL, Colo. March 1, 2021 – Westwater Resources, Inc. (“Westwater”) (Nasdaq: WWR), a battery graphite development company, applauds the President’s Executive Order signed on February 24, 2021, that seeks to provide for more resilient supply chains to revitalize and rebuild domestic manufacturing capacity and maintain America’s competitive edge in research and development.
The President’s declaration asks the Secretary of Energy, as part of larger study involving several branches of the US Government, to submit a report within 100 days identifying risks to the supply chain for high-capacity batteries including those that power electric vehicles. This effort could be important to Westwater’s plans to develop its battery graphite business in the United States. The new order builds upon the prior Administration’s Executive Order issued on September 30, 2020 related to critical minerals. See the Westwater news release dated October 5, 2020.
The U.S. is 100% dependent on imports for battery-grade graphite, which is currently the primary anode material in the Lithium-Ion batteries that power smartphones, laptops, electric vehicles, and store power generated from intermittent renewable energy sources. Westwater’s Coosa Graphite Deposit is located in Alabama and the Company plans to develop the deposit to supply natural flake graphite for beneficiation into battery-grade graphite for all types of batteries.
Christopher M. Jones, President and Chief Executive Officer of Westwater, said, “The President’s Executive Order could open up new avenues for financing and permitting for our project – this is good news for Westwater Resources and the Coosa Graphite Project.”
Further details on the Executive Order on America’s Supply Chains can be found at https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2021/02/24/executive-order-on-americas-supply-chains/
Graphite is specifically named as one of the critical minerals in which the U.S. is heavily dependent on China for its supply.
Westwater is uniquely positioned to benefit from the action the U.S. government is taking to ensure America and its technology manufacturers can rely on a safe and secure source of graphite to power our next generation of power and technology needs. The action by the President orders the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy to coordinate the executive branch actions necessary to implement the Order with the Office of Science and Technology, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Energy and the Secretary of the Interior, among other agencies, to provide reports within 100 days on risks to the supply chain, work completed thus far since Executive Order 13952 (signed September 30, 2020) and possible actions the Administration might take to reduce these risks.
Westwater will work to support the efforts by the relevant agencies in the U.S. government and to ensure that they remain aware of the importance of battery-grade graphite, its importance to the nation’s security, and how the Coosa Graphite Project fits into the critical minerals-equation.
About Westwater Resources
Westwater Resources (NASDAQ: WWR) is focused on developing battery-grade graphite. The Company’s projects include the Coosa Graphite Project — the most advanced natural flake graphite project in the contiguous United States — and the associated Coosa Graphite Deposit located across 41,900 acres (~17,000 hectares) in east-central Alabama. Ongoing operation of the pilot program is producing ULTRA-PMGTM, ULTRA-DEXDGTM and ULTRA-CSPGTM in quantities that facilitate qualification testing at potential customers. 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,” “scheduled,” 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 the contents of the report produced as a result of the Executive Order; future government support for domestic graphite production, including the Company’s Coosa Graphite Project; and future production of battery-grade graphite, 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 operate a pilot plant capable of producing battery-grade materials in quantities and on schedules consistent with the Coosa Graphite Project business plan; (b) the Company’s ability to raise additional capital in the future including the ability to utilize existing financing facilities; (c) spot price and long-term contract price of graphite and vanadium; (d) risks associated with our operations and the operations of our partners such as Samuel Engineering, Dorfner Anzaplan and others, including the impact of COVID-19 and its potential impacts to the capital markets; (e) operating conditions at the Company’s projects; (f) government regulation of the graphite industry and the vanadium industry; (g) world-wide graphite and vanadium supply and demand, including the supply and demand for lithium-based batteries; (h) 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 and Colorado; (i) any graphite or vanadium discoveries not being in high-enough concentration to make it economically feasible to extract the minerals; (j) currently pending or new litigation or arbitration; and (k) 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.
Christopher M. Jones, President & CEO
Jeff Vigil, VP Finance & CFO
Jay Wago, Vice President – Sales and Marketing
Porter, LeVay & Rose