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Ministry of Energy, Mines and
Hon. Jack Davis, Minister
URANIUM AND THORIUM
OCCURRENCES IN BRITISH
By Larry D. Jones
A contribution to the CanadaIBritish Columbia Mineral
Development Agreement, 1985-1990
Page 3 of the PDF called OF1990-32
The geological diversity of British Columbia provides a wide variety of settings for the occurrence of uranium and thorium. The Victoria deposit, a gold-silver-cobaltmolybdenum occurrence south of Hazelton, contains uraninite erratically distributed in narrow veins in granodiorite. The Little Gem deposit, located near Gold Bridge, contains uranium, gold and cobalt in veins within granodiorite. The Verity prospect, near Lampriere, contains uranium-bearing pyrodore in carbonatite. Uranium and thorium occur in amphibolite at the Husselbee showing, located on the west side of Atlin Lake. To the east, north of Surprise Lake, metazeunerite occurs in shears within quartz monzonite at the Purple Rose showing. The Rexspar uranium deposit is in volcanic rocks north of Kamloops. The Vowell and Malloy creek placers of the Bugaboo area contain uranium and thorium minerals in stream gravels produced from erosion of quartz monzonite rocks.
The Blizzard, Cup Lake, Hydraulic Lake, Haynes Lake, Fuki and other stratabound, basal uranium occurrences lie in fossil stream-channel sandstones and conglomerates in the Okanagan Highland and are between 1 and 4 million years of age. Even younger deposits, which are still forming today, include the many surficial uranium-enriched post-glacial organic-rich basins located along the west side of Okanagan Lake. They include the Prairie Flats, Covert Basin, Sinking Pond and North Wow Flat occurrences.
Of the 182 known uranium and thorium occurrences in British Columbia, only a few have the grade and tonnage to have economic potential. These include the Rexspar deposit, some of the stratabound, basal deposits and possibly the placer and surficial deposits. Total in situ uranium in British Columbia is estimated at over 7400 tomes of uranium. However, due to the availability of high-grade large-tonnage deposits elsewhere in the World and Canada, such as those in northern Saskatchewan, uranium production from deposits in British Columbia may not be economically feasible in the foreseeable future.
New Info From CTV says that there are 196 occurrences as of 2011. Which leaves one asking, I suppose, if there's been a Moratorium on Uranium and Thorium in our Province since 1980 why are miners looking for the damn stuff, still.
Page 4.... the Map of .....Uranium and Thorium
HISTORY (pages 13 and 15 of the PDF file)
The earliest interest in radioactivity in British Columbia was in 1914, when the federal government offered cash bonusesfor discoveries of commercial quantities of radioactive minerals to locate radium. The rewards were unclaimed and the offer was withdrawn in 1938. In 1932, an electroscopic survey, which measures
radioactivity, was carried out on the Radium property (MINFILE 092K052) on Quadra Island. Carnotite was identified in seams in volcanic rocks and assayed up to 245 per cent uranium. Little exploration for radioactive minerals was carried out until the late 1940s. The Rexspar deposit (082M021) at Birch Island, first explored for fluorite in 1920, was investigated for uranium mineralization in 1949. By 1977,1.114 million tonnes of reserves were indicated at a grade of 0.068 per cent uranium, with an appreciable content of rare-earth elements.
During the late 1940s to mid 1950s, many properties, previously considered as precious and base metal prospects, were explored for radioactive minerals. The Victoria (093M072), a gold-silver-cobalt-molybdenum property south of Hazelton, contains uraninite erratically distributed in narrow veins in granodiorite of the Rocher D6boulC stock. The Little Gem property (0921NE068) contains uranium, gold and cobalt in veins within granodiorite. The Verity property (083D005) near Lampriere contains uranium-bearing pyrochlore in carbonatite. Radioactive minerals occur in amphibolite on the Husselbee property (104N001), located on the west side of Atlin Lake. To the east, north of Surprise Lake, metazeunerite occurs in shears in granite rocks on the Purple Rose property (104N005). In 1955, radioactive secondary hydrous aluminum phosphate minerals were found in rhyolite dikes cutting quartz monzonite on the Nithi Mountain property (093F012), south of Fraser Lake. The Vowell and Malloy Creek properties (082KNE007,8), near Spillamacheen, contain Recent placer uraninite and pyrochlore, which were tested in 1954. In 1956,11312 kilograms of concentrates were produced, having an average grade of 25 per cent niobium, 0.76 per cent uranium and 13 per cent thorium oxide.
In the late 1960s, uranium minerals were found in pegmatite within gneiss on the Mota property (082FSW212), located near China Creek. In 1%8, Japanese geologists, while conducting a car-borne scintillometer survey, discovered autunite (Fuki deposit-082ENE015) in a Miocene paleochannel beneath a basalt cap in the upper Kettle River watershed. This led to discovery of the Blizzard deposit (082ENE046) and several others, which are referred to as Tertiary basal-type deposits.
From 1975 to 1978, a jointly funded Federal-Provincial Uranium Reconnaissance Program (URP), conducted by the Geologic. Survey of Canada and the British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, investigated the uranium potential of the Cordillera. This program consisted of regional stream water and sediment geochemical surveys, with detailed follow-up studies, including geochemical surveys, geological mapping and uranium resource evaluation and appraisal. Various surveys were completed on map sheets 826 L and M and 104N, 0 and P.
In 1979, post-glacial uranium deposits were discovered in soil in the semi-arid Okanagan Valley. These 'young' uranium accumulations are associated with stagnant or saline waters trapped in hydraulically closed basins. Prairie Flats (082ENW073), located within the Summerland town limits, is one such fluviatile deposit. It contains about 178 tomes of uranium, and since the glacial retreat, uranium has accumulated at an estimated rate of 23 kilograms per year.
Also in 1979, an inquiry by Dr. D.V. Bates and others was made into the adequacy of existing measures to provide protection to workers and the general public in all aspects of uranium mining in British Columbia. This resulted in a three-volume report entitled "Royal Commission of Inquiry on Health and Environmental Protection into Uranium Mining", with a summary of recommendations.
In February, 1980, the provincial government imposed a seven-year moratorium on uranium exploration and development in British Columbia. The moratorium expired on February 28,1987 and new regulations were established by the provincial government; safeguards on exploration, recommended in 1980 by the Bates inquiry, were put in place. The regulations require that proposals to explore for uranium or thorium or for exploration in certain designated areas must be filed with the Chief Inspector of Mines. Significant uranium or thorium levels must be reported whenever found. This level is defined as 0.05 per cent or more of uranium and 0.15 per cent or more thorium, over a sample length of one metre or more. Consult the regulations (Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in British Columbia, June 1990) for complete details.
Page 19 The Blizzard Deposit
Page 73, 74, 75 The Occurrences, in other words the Longitude Latitudes
Page 77, 78, 79 References