You may have never heard of the Athabasca Basin in Saskatchewan.
But this quiet corner of Canada is home to the largest and highest-grade uranium deposits in the world, holding nearly a fifth of the global supply. And it could become more relevant than ever.
• The desire for nuclear energy is growing faster than ever due to global pressures to get closer to net zero emissions and find low carbon power sources
• Uranium prices have been on a tear, with demand beginning to rapidly exceed the available supply globally
• This dynamic has caused uranium exploration companies and producers become more relevant than ever as nuclear energy gets closer to global adoption
Why it matters:
• The global rush to build out nuclear infrastructure has ramped up the need for new uranium discoveries to be made in order to bring new mines into production
• Hedge funds and capital allocators globally are beginning to ramp up their exposure to the uranium space ahead of what could be a generational shift in the renewable energy landscape
Who is making moves:
• ATHA Energy (CSE:SASK) owns 3.4 million acres of mineral claims across the Athabasca Basin in Saskatchewan, Canada.
• Currently, ATHA Energy is undertaking one of the largest electromagnetic surveys in the history of the Athabasca Basin. Their 2023 Exploration Program is utilizing five different EM systems, surveying 17 project areas which cover all currently producing, past producing, and developing uranium mining camps within the Basin.
• The objective of their 2023 Exploration Program is to uncover prospective target areas that could host significant uranium deposits. The Company has already released results from the first four project areas. The initial surveys have successfully identified 122 km of combined conductors and fifteen prospective targets. There are still results pending for the remaining 13 projects, so lots of news to come.
• Arguably the world’s most important uranium mine in the world, Cameco’s McArthur River mine, is located in the Athabasca Basin
• The Athabasca Basin has become even more important of late due to its geopolitical stability, as much of the uranium supply in the world comes from regions that often experience civil turmoil and political tension
• ATHA Energy sourced their land package from the same team who staked NexGen Energy’s (current valuation of over $4.3 billion) foundational assets, as well as Hathor's Roughrider Deposit, which was ultimately sold to Rio Tinto for $650 million.
By the numbers:
• The Athabasca Region currently supplies about 20% of the world’s total uranium
• Uranium was first discovered in the Athabasca Region in 1940 and the first uranium mine in the region became operational in 1968
• ATHA Energy also holds a 10% carried interest on exploration properties operated by NexGen Energy and IsoEnergy, these Companies have made two of the most recent high-grade uranium deposit discoveries in the Athabasca Basin.