Jindalee Resources Ltd (ASX:JRL) is aiming to upgrade the current inferred resource to indicated at the McDermitt Lithium Project in the southeast of Oregon, USA following having completed 15 drill-holes to date with remaining assays expected in mid-February.
The inauguration of President-elect Biden has focused investor attention on his election commitment for the United States to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and the development of large, strategic lithium projects are a core element of this strategy.
Several battery factory developments have been announced or proposed in the US and McDermitt is well-placed to emerge as a future source of lithium for those projects.
McDermitt currently has a maiden inferred mineral resource of 155 million tonnes at 2,000 ppm lithium – one of the largest lithium deposits in the US.
With around 34 square kilometres of claims, the project has the potential for a long-life, low-cost mining operations and further development of the resource could make the US self-sufficient in lithium.
Recent drilling results
The company recently received the first assay results from 10 of 15 drill holes completed in December 2020, which intersected substantial thickness of the flat-lying sediments hosting lithium mineralisation.
Most of the holes were mineralised over the entire sedimentary package encountered, returning 126.5 metres at 1,397 ppm lithium and 120.4 metres at 1,440 ppm lithium.
Other notable results include 9.2 metres at 2,243 ppm lithium, including 15.3 metres at 2,459 ppm, 18.3 metres at 1,192 from 58 metres and 30.5 metres at 1,939 from 397 metres, including 29 metres at 2164 from 97.6 metres.
Hole MDRC004, around 1.1 kilometres north of the inferred resource intersected 9.2 metres at 2,243 ppm lithium from 140.3 metres and 15.3 metres at 2,459 ppm lithium from 155.6 metres, suggesting ‘excellent’ potential to add substantial tonnages in this part of the project area.
Additional metallurgical optimisation work at the project continues with an updated resource targeted for March.
A scoping study is underway and set for completion in March – April with plans to submit a 2021 drilling program for permitting by April.
Engagement with US investors and potential partners is also ongoing.
There is a global, focused attention on reducing carbon emissions through renewables, with EV’s and energy storage the key drivers.
Lithium demand is expected to increase significantly to meet emissions targets with the uptake of lithium-ion batteries for both EV’s and energy storage.
The US alone is planning for the new energy revolution and is set to spend US$2 trillion on EV infrastructure and other carbon reduction projects by 2040.