Cameco Large Cigar Lake Uranium Mine Could Start Development April 2010 and other Uranium News

Cameco says Cigar Lake uranium project ready for development as early as April, 2010

Cameco has already pumped most of the water out of the northern Saskatchewan mine, which has been flooded for three years.

Goheen said refurbishment of shaft one, the main shaft, is three-quarters complete and the water level is down to the 475-to 480-metre level.

Once up and running, Cigar Lake is expected to produce 18 million pounds of uranium annually, half of it belonging to Cameco, which owns 50 per cent of the project. The company aims to double its uranium production by 2018.

The other half is held by a number of investors, the largest being French nuclear giant Areva.

Uranium miners need to increase production and exploration to meet demand over the coming decade, but added there has been little development because uranium prices have been below the production costs of most suppliers.

The developments at Cigar Lake effect the overall uranium supply picture out to 2020, which this site looked at previously. If Cigar Lake was not developed then there would be accelerated development of mines in Africa and other locations.

Another prior update that looked more closely at Namibia’s uranium mines

Projection for world uranium to 2020

The production from Cameco and Denison likely means that the Canadian projection is too low. The overall production may not ramp up that much immediately as Cigar Lake will cause other projects to be delayed

2. Denison Mines Corp (DML.TO, Canadian mining company) said on Monday it expects to sell 1.8 million pounds of uranium in 2010, which is an increase from the 1.4 million pounds of uranium in 2009 Denison’s projects an increase of 200 tons of uranium in 2010.

3. Denison has confirmed high grade uranium deposits at its Wheeler River property in Saskatchewan. Zone A of the drilling area has the potential to contain between 40 million and 80 million pounds of uranium, while Zone B has the potential to contain between five million and 15 million pounds of uranium “and significantly more if it extends to the southwest where approximately 150 metres of strike length remains undrilled,” the Toronto-based uranium miner said Tuesday. Denison will continue to explore the area, known as the Phoenix discovery, in 2010 through a $6-million drill program

4. Perth-based uranium exploration company Newera Uranium (ASX:NRU) has kicked off a drilling program at Jailor Bore in the upper Gascoyne region of Western Australia

5. Cameco Corp., the world’s second- largest uranium producer, may be more interested in acquiring Paladin Energy Ltd. after the Australian company fell 15 percent in three months

Paladin estimated production of 5.6 million pounds to 6.1 million pounds for the year ending June 30, down from a prior projection of 6.6 million pounds.