Battery Metals

Canada Carbon: What about the marble?

Battery Metals

A recent article in the Financial Post highlighted Canada Carbon Inc. (TSXV:CCB).

A recent article in the Financial Post highlighted Canada Carbon Inc. (TSXV:CCB).
As quoted in the article:

Back in November 2015 Canada Carbon signed what it referred to as a “comprehensive agreement to sell 75,000 tonnes of architectural-quality marble material” to an undisclosed third party. The company valued this agreement at $13.75 million dollars. The detailed terms of the agreement were not disclosed but in the press release the “agreed base valuation for marble blocks or slabs is $14 per cubic foot, which is approximately $184 per tonne”. Intriguingly, the press release also states, “additional provisions for price increases above this base case, as well as royalties to be paid on the sale of all value-added marble products.” The PEA estimates the “all in” life of mine costs for marble production at $54 per tonne.
The agreement is to take effect “from the date of the acquisition of the required environmental approvals and an extraction permit to quarry the material, and is renewable.” My informant seems to be right on the money in terms of price and timing. But the PEA marble production is projected to be 150,000 tonnes per year, which would make an additional 75,000 tonnes available to the market alongside the 75,000 tonnes already committed in the off-take agreement.
What is even more interesting on the marble side is that there is a lot of marble at the Canada Carbon property. In the press release summarizing its PEA, Canada Carbon reports an inferred marble resource of a little over 1.5 million tonnes based on “the diamond drill holes completed by Canada Carbon since 2013. A total of 99 drill holes were logged according to marble quality by Canada Carbon.” The marble deposit is open in all directions.
The marble Canada Carbon is set to produce is white, with black flecks (that would be the graphite) and can take the high polish architectural marble requires. Demand for this dense, white marble is constant as its uses range from gravestones and bases through to decorative uses and building cladding.
The great advantage of the marble element of the Canada Carbon story is that, once permitting is in place, it is a quick march towards production and sale of the marble. Canada Carbon has already quarried large blocks of sample material and knows where the quarry would be sited. The marble itself would be taken from the quarry in industry standard blocks. These blocks would be trucked from the site to the purchaser. There is no “processing” to be done by Canada Carbon.
Right now Canada Carbon is awaiting a decision from Quebec’s “Commission de Protection du Territoire Agricole du Québec (“CPTAQ”) to remove the Miller Project lands from provincial agricultural reserves.” This decision requires significant third party reporting and broad public consultation which has already begun.
Of course, it is not all smooth sailing: Canada Carbon is the first mine in Quebec to be wholly developed under the new Mining Act. New regulations are being formulated and issued, sometimes with little or no notice. For example, late last Friday the 10th of February, details of the required public consultation process were released. Bruce Duncan, Canada Carbon’s CEO, was unworried, “We’d already built public consultation into our time-line. The new regs require online posting of various documents and third party reports which we were already in the process of completing. It’s actually a bit of a relief to know exactly what we have to do and the timelines for doing it. Before the new regulations were issued we were a little uncertain about exactly what would be required. Now we know what we have to do and we are well on our way to getting it done. We have great public support in the area and we are looking forward to outlining the Miller Deposit project and its significant benefits to the public.”
When the process is complete and a decision is announced, and assuming it is favourable, Canada Carbon will be in a position to quarry its marble resource and sell marble to a willing purchaser at a very attractive price.
For Canada Carbon shareholders, the marble opportunity is the engine which can drive the company while it continues to advance its nuclear graphite ambitions.

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