Strong demand and a good price for high grade uranium is responsible for a $33 million facelift at Eldorado Nuclear's Beaverlodge operation, near Uranium City, Sask., designed to reduce costs and make the operation more competitive with other open pit mines. Rehabilitation has resulted in the installation of a new oxygen plant, office building, laboratory, dry and warehouse. A new carbonation plant is scheduled for completion by year end. Production comes from two connected underground mines - the Fay and Verna - and two shallow mines - the Eagle and the Bolger. Official ore reserves at the end of 1978 were estimated at 4.19 million tons averaging 0.20 percent U 3 O 8 , sufficient for another 20 to 25 years of production. Reported production of uranium oxide in 1978 was 1.2 million pounds. It is expected to reach 1.6 million pounds in 1979. The Verna mine was closed because of a lack of market, but reopened in 1977. Eldorado crews are installing a massive ventilation system. Other development work is proceeding at the Dubyna 31 Zone where an underground satellite ramp operation is being installed. Proposed method of mining is via the access ramp with lateral development drifts into the ore zone. A small open pit, concurrently being developed in the Dubyna 31 Zone, will be mined by 3 m benches. Waste material will be dumped into the mine site disposal area for later use in restoration. Major changes to the processing operation are also being carried out. Changes to the plant in 1979 will include the addition of new offices, a laboratory and shower facilities for the employees. (LL)
Eldorado is involved in a vigorous uranium exploration program in Canada, reflecting, as do sales and profits for 1975, the extraordinary turnaround in the uranium market. The Beaverlodge mining operation is being expanded. Increased public awareness of the nuclear industry has called for increased research and communications in waste management and associated environmental protection. (E.C.B.)
A financial report for 1977 is presented. Net earnings were $6,933,172. The Beaverlodge operations produced 255,622 tons of ore and 1,184,961 lb. of concentrate. The Port Hope refinery produced 8.5 million lb. of UF 6 and 1.8 million lb. of UO 2 . Sales to Japan and some other countries were held up pending ratification by these countries of the non-proliferation treaty. (LL)
Howe, G.R.; Abbatt, J.D.
This study has determined the mortality experience of Eldorado Resources Limited employees between 1950 and 1980. This crown corporation is involved in the mining and processing of uranium products. An initial analysis shows significant excesses of lung cancer deaths at Port Raduim and Beaverlodge mines and a smaller, nonsignificant excess at the Port Hope refinery. The lung-cancer mortality has been analyzed as a function of radon-daughter exposure. This initial analysis is currently being refined to further develop estimates of excess risk
At the time of the recent closures of the Agnew Lake, Beaverlodge and Madawaska Mines Limited uranium mining and milling facilities, several relevant regulatory initiatives, including the development of decommissioning criteria, were underway, or contemplated. In the absence of precedents, the regulatory agencies and companies involved adopted approaches to the decommissioning of these facilities that reflected site specific circumstances, federal and provincial regulatory requirements, and generally accepted principles of good engineering practice and environmental protection. This paper summarizes related historical and current regulatory policies, requirements and guidelines; including those implemented at the three decommissioned sites
A financial report for 1978 is presented. Net earnings were $17,618,000. The Beaverlodge mine produced 307,000 tons of ore, and the mill 1,283,000 lb. of concentrate. The Port Hope refinery produced 1,283,000 lb of UF 6 and 2.1 million lb. of U0 2 . The construction of a new UF 6 refinery near Port Granby, Ontario was turned down by the federal government on environmental grounds. The search for a new site is continuing. Exploration is underway in seven provinces and two territories; a share in the Key Lake joint venture was acquired. (LL)
While the Beaverlodge area of Northern Saskatchewan became an important uranium-producing district during the 1950s, the Athabasca sandstone basin, located in the immediate vicinity, was considered to be non-prospective in Canada's regional assessment. Twenty years later, with the introduction of the supergene model into the basin's exploration strategy, the favourability of the host-rock for uranium deposits was shown. However, in some instances the search for local targets was enriched by implementing non-supergene models. Most geologists originally favoured the Middle Proterozoic (sub-Helikian) unconformity as a unique ore-controlling feature. Later, the concept of Lower Proterozoic (Aphebian) syngenetic protore, as represented by graphite-bearing strata in Archaean proximity, was added. In the author's view the combination of these factors is productive only within specialized segments of Archaean-Lower Proterozoic (Archaean-Aphebian) contact zones. (author)
In the fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 1979 Eldorado Nuclear had gross revenues totalling $111 498 000. Net earnings were $398 000. Progress was made towards the completion of capital projects leading to the development of the key Lake deposit and the construction of a new UF 6 plant. Studies on a new conversion plant to be located in Saskatchewan are being carried out. Eldorado's mining and processing capacity is to be more than doubled in the early 1980's. The company participated in 28 exploration projects in eight provinces and both territories in 1979. The Beaverlodge mine produced more than 312 000 tons of ore, and 1 006 000 pounds of U 3 O 8 were recovered. Uranium hexafluoride production was 9 890 000 pounds U, and UO 2 production accounted for 2 919 000 pounds U. (LL)
Steger, H.F.; Bowman, W.S.; Zechanowitsch, G.; Sutarno, R.
Samples of two uranium ores BL-2a and BL-4a from Beaverlodge, Saskatchewan, were prepared as compositional reference materials to replace the similar certified ores, BL-2 and BL-4, of which the stock had been exhausted. Each ore was ground to minus 74 μm, blended in one lot and bottled in 200-g units. The homogeneity of the ores with respect to uranium was confirmed by both a neutron activation and a fluorimetric analytical procedure performed by two commercial laboratories. The recommended value for uranium is based on the results of one determination on each of 25 bottles by the volumetric-umpire method performed at CANMET. A statistical analysis of the data gave a recommended value for uranium of 0.426% for BL-2a and 0.1248% for BL-4a
Two major episodes of uranium metallogenesis are recognized in Northern Saskatchewan. The first is of late-Hudsonian age and gave rise to metamorphic-hydrothermal pitchblende deposits of simple mineralogy at Beaverlodge (primary mineralization: 1780+-20 m.y.). The second and more important episode of approximately Grenvillian age rendered unconformity-type deposits in the Athabasca Basin (primary mineralization: 1000-1300 m.y.). The late-Hudsonian deposits at Beaverlodge were overprinted by this second event and new deposits of complex mineralogy were formed in that area. The metallogenetic importance of a third and much later episode which gave rise to mineralization within the Athabasca Formation is uncertain at the moment. With regards to metallogenesis of the unconformity-type deposits, presently available evidence favours a diagenetic-hydrothermal rather than a near-surface supergene or a magmatic/metamorphic hydrothermal model. The diagenetic-hydrothermal model relates uranium mineralization to 'red bed-type' diagenetic processes in the Athabasca Formation involving post-depositional oxidation and leaching, which continued for several hundred million years after deposition. Ore deposits were formed by interaction, under conditions of deep burial at elevated temperatures and pressures, of a uraniferous oxidizing Athabasca aquifer with reducing, graphite-bearing, metamorphic rocks of the basin floor. The large-scale convection required for such interaction may have been induced by mafic magmatic activity coeval with the episode of mineralization. The diagenetic-hydrothermal model displays close similarities with metallogenetic models developed for certain sandstone-type deposits. (author)
Clifton, A.W.; Barsi, R.G.; Misfeldt, G.A.
Uranium was discovered in the Beaverlodge area of northern Saskatchewan in 1934 with the first major mill beginning operation in 1953. Little attention was paid to tailings quality or tailings management practices. With the onset of the modern uranium operations beginning in the late 1970's, it was repeatedly evident, that the public had significant concerns, particularly with respect to tailings management, that must be addressed if the developments were to be allowed to proceed. Primary considerations related to environmental protection, public safety and an assurance of the ongoing sustainable development of the region. Integrating the decommissioning of a mine/mill site into development planning from the very outset has proven to be a critical component that has contributed to the ongoing success of the Saskatchewan uranium operations. This paper will provide a case study of the evolution of the uranium tailings management technology utilized in Saskatchewan. It documents the evolution of tailings management processes and the characteristics of tailings produced by successive mines in northern Saskatchewan. It also discusses the evolution of technologies applied to management of uranium mill tailings and demonstrates how progressively increasing levels of environmental protection have been achieved during the last 47 years of uranium mill operation. The paper also shows that the planned and progressive decommissioning of an operational site is the key to: Minimizing environmental impacts; Satisfying public and regulatory concerns; Minimizing operational and decommissioning costs; Minimizing corporate liability; and Shifting public resistance to public support. (author)
Clifton, W.A.; Barsi, R.G.; Misfeldt, G.A.
Uranium was discovered in the Beaverlodge area of northern Saskatchewan in 1934 with the first major mill beginning operation in 1953. Little attention was paid to tailings quality or tailings management practices. With the onset of the modem uranium operations beginning in the late 1970's, it was repeatedly evident, that the public had significant concerns, particularly with respect to tailings management, that must be addressed if the developments were to be allowed to proceed. Primary considerations related to environmental protection, public safety and an assurance of the ongoing sustainable development of the region. Integrating the decommissioning of a mine/mill site into development planning from the very outset has proven to be a critical component that has contributed to the ongoing success of the Saskatchewan uranium operations. This paper will provide a case study of the evolution of the uranium tailings management technology utilized in Saskatchewan. It documents the evolution of tailings management processes and the characteristics of tailings produced by successive mines in northern Saskatchewan. It also discusses the evolution of technologies applied to management of uranium mill tailings and demonstrates how progressively increasing levels of environmental protection have been achieved during the last 47 years of uranium mill operation. The paper also shows that the planned and progressive decommissioning of an operational site is the key to: Minimizing environmental impacts; Satisfying public and regulatory concerns; Minimizing operational and decommissioning costs; Minimizing corporate liability; and Shifting public resistance to public support. (author)
The ubiquitous association of pitchblende uranium deposits with terrestrial sediments is believed to be the natural result of formation of the orebodies by surficial processes operating under continental conditions. The major uranium deposits of North America illustrate this. The quartz-pebble conglomerate uranium deposits of Elliot Lake, Ontario, have thorium-rich uranium minerals that indicate a detrital origin. With the development of an oxygenic atmosphere before 1,700 m.y. ago, uranium was transported in solution in meteoric surface and near-surface ground water, and produced pitchblende veins in fractures in the basement and in lava flows in terrestrial environments. This accounts for the closee association of fluvial sediments with the pitchblende deposits at Beaverlodge, Rabbit Lake, Baker Lake, and Great Bear Lake, Canada. The development of land plants about 300 m.y. ago produced favorable environments within the terrestrial sandstones themselves, and resulted in the tabular uranium orebodies of the Colorado Plateau. The close relation of tabular orebodies to sedimentation is apparent when compared to recent fluvial sedimentation. In Wyoming, the stratigraphic restriction of the boundary-roll deposits to a few zones in Eocene rocks results from their being remobilized tabular deposits
Full Text Available Lung cancer mortality after exposure to radon decay products (RDP among 16,236 male Eldorado uranium workers was analyzed. Male workers from the Beaverlodge and Port Radium uranium mines and the Port Hope radium and uranium refinery and processing facility who were first employed between 1932 and 1980 were followed up from 1950 to 1999. A total of 618 lung cancer deaths were observed. The analysis compared the results of the biologically-based two-stage clonal expansion (TSCE model to the empirical excess risk model. The spontaneous clonal expansion rate of pre-malignant cells was reduced at older ages under the assumptions of the TSCE model. Exposure to RDP was associated with increase in the clonal expansion rate during exposure but not afterwards. The increase was stronger for lower exposure rates. A radiation-induced bystander effect could be a possible explanation for such an exposure response. Results on excess risks were compared to a linear dose-response parametric excess risk model with attained age, time since exposure and dose rate as effect modifiers. In all models the excess relative risk decreased with increasing attained age, increasing time since exposure and increasing exposure rate. Large model uncertainties were found in particular for small exposure rates.
Gangloff, A.; Lenoble, A.; Mabile, J.
This document gathers three contributions. In the first one, after having recalled data regarding uranium ore and metal reserves in Canada, USA, South Africa and France, the author describes and discusses the geological and mineral characteristics of the main deposits in Canada (Great Bear Lake, Ace-Verna and other deposits of the Beaverlodge district, Gunnar, Blind River and Bancroft), in the USA (New Mexico, Colorado and Arizona), and in South Africa (similar structure as observed in Blind River). The second contribution addresses the French uranium deposits by firstly presenting, describing and classifying vein deposits (five types are distinguished) and sedimentary deposits in different geological formations, and by secondly discussing the impacts of these characteristics on exploration, surface exploration works, and mining works. The third contribution proposes an overview of the uranium market: comments of world productions (conventional extraction processes and technical peculiarities, costs and prices, reserves and production in Canada, USA, South Africa, France, Australia and others), presentation of the French program (location and production capacity of uranium production plants, locations of ore extraction), overview of the current situation of the world market (price levels, possible prices after 1962), discussion of the comparison between demands and supplies, overview of the French uranium policy
Apt, K.E.; Balagna, J.P.; Bryant, E.A.; Cowan, G.A.; Daniels, W.R.; Vidale, R.J.
Precambrian uranium ores have been surveyed for evidence of other natural fission reactors. The requirements for formation of a natural reactor direct investigations to uranium deposits with large, high-grade ore zones. Massive zones with volumes approximately greater than 1 m 3 and concentrations approximately greater than 20 percent uranium are likely places for a fossil reactor if they are approximately greater than 0.6 b.a. old and if they contained sufficient water but lacked neutron-absorbing impurities. While uranium deposits of northern Canada and northern Australia have received most attention, ore samples have been obtained from the following worldwide locations: the Shinkolobwe and Katanga regions of Zaire; Southwest Africa; Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil; the Jabiluka, Nabarlek, Koongarra, Ranger, and El Sharana ore bodies of the Northern Territory, Australia; the Beaverlodge, Maurice Bay, Key Lake, Cluff Lake, and Rabbit Lake ore bodies and the Great Bear Lake region, Canada. The ore samples were tested for isotopic variations in uranium, neodymium, samarium, and ruthenium which would indicate natural fission. Isotopic anomalies were not detected. Criticality was not achieved in these deposits because they did not have sufficient 235 U content (a function of age and total uranium content) and/or because they had significant impurities and insufficient moderation. A uranium mill monitoring technique has been considered where the ''yellowcake'' output from appropriate mills would be monitored for isotopic alterations indicative of the exhumation and processing of a natural reactor
In 1982 Eldorado Nuclear Ltd. acquired important new sources of uranium in the Wollaston Lake area of northern Saskatchewan by purchasing the shares of Gulf Minerals Canada Ltd. and Uranerz Canada Ltd. Eldorado Nuclear Ltd. is now sole owner of the Rabbit Lake properties, consisting of more than 30 million kg of U 3 O 8 and a mill with a capacity of 2.5 million kg annually. Production records were set at the Port Hope, Ontario, uranium processing plant, and processing capacity continued to expand there and at the new Blind River, Ontario, refinery. The uneconomic Beaverlodge mine in northern Saskatchewan was closed as scheduled. The company participated in the development of the Key Lake project in northern Saskatchewan. This high-grade, open pit mine has reserves containing more than 80 million kg of U 3 O 8 , and will have a production capacity of 5.4 million kg annually when production begins in 1983. Company assets were increased from $618.4 million in 1981 to $875.6 million in 1982; and corporate structure was re-organized to integrate newly-acquired operations. Earnings for 1982 were $4 million
Exploration for mineral deposits in Canada resulted in the discovery of large uranium deposits, such as at Great. Bear Lake, Northwest Territories (1930), in the Elliot Lake area, Ontario (1949); Beaverlodge, Wollaston Lake Fold Belt and Carswell Structure in Saskatchewan (1946-1975) and many uranium occurrences in the Canadian Shield, in the Orogenic Belts and in the Platforms. Uranium output in Canada since 1942 until and including 1976 amounted to 112,000 tonnes U. Reasonably Assured uranium resources as of 1976 amounted to 167,000 tonnes U (at a price up to $40/lb. U 3 0 8 ) and 15,000 tonnes U (at a price more than $40 up to $60/lb. U 3 O 8 ). Estimated Additional uranium resources as of 1976 amounted to 392,000 tonnes U (at a price up to $40/lb. U-Og) and 264,000 tonnes U (at a price more than $40 up to $60/lb. U 3 0 8 ). Possible further potential beyond the above mentioned classes is tentatively estimated to be in the 6th category according to NEA/IAEA favourability classification. (author)
Alberta Environment measures the airborne concentrations of carbon dioxide, fine particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide, ozone and sulphur dioxide on a continuous basis at air quality monitoring stations in Edmonton, Calgary, Red Deer and Beaverlodge. Every hour, the readings are converted to an Air Quality Index (AQI) number to report on Alberta's outdoor air quality as either good, fair, poor or very poor. The categories relate to guidelines under Alberta's Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act and reflect the maximum acceptable levels specified by the National Ambient Air Quality Objectives. Current air quality conditions are available to the public through Alberta Environment's web site or by phoning a toll free number. Both Edmonton and Calgary report good air quality at least 90 per cent of the time. Occasionally, air quality in the two cities may reach the fair category, but it is seldom poor. Fair, poor or very poor air quality occurs with strong temperature inversion and light winds. Under these conditions, air pollutants, usually from automobiles, are trapped in a layer of stagnant air. Fair and poor air quality can also be caused by summer heat when photochemical smog forms by chemical reactions with oxides of nitrogen and volatile hydrocarbons. 1 ref., 1 tab., 1 fig
An EUB inquiry into oil and gas activities in the Hythe and Beaverlodge area in Alberta was requested by a number of families and individuals, living near the area, complaining of emissions from petroleum operations, as well as expressing concerns about increasing community frustration and intentional damage to petroleum facilities. During the Board's consideration of the request two members of the group, Wiebo Ludwig and Richard Boonstra, were charged with criminal offences related to damage to oil and gas facilities in northwestern Alberta. They were tried and convicted for these offences in April 2000. Subsequently, the Board denied the request for an inquiry on the grounds that the oil and gas operations identified by the families have been conducted in compliance with the terms of the respective companies' approvals, licences and permits, and the operations conformed to provincial standards. Furthermore, the families, especially the Ludwig, Boonstra and Schilthuis families, have consistently demonstrated a lack of cooperation over the years in participating in efforts initiated by the Board, industry and government, to find solutions to their concerns. Also, the Board found no objective evidence that the harmful effects identified by the families resulted from the lawful activities of the energy companies operating in the Hythe area. This Memorandum of Decision contains the detailed reasoning of the Board for denying the request for an inquiry, and to provide context, including facts about the extent, scope and performance of oil and gas operations in the area. 2 figs
Pekar, K. E.; Goodell, P. C.; Walton, J. C.; Anthony, E. Y.; Ren, M.
The Nopal I uranium deposit is located at Pena Blanca in Chihuahua, Mexico. Mining of high-grade uranium ore occurred in the early 1980s, with the ore stockpiled nearby. The stockpile was mostly cleared in the 1990s; however, some of the high-grade boulders have remained there, creating localized sources of radioactivity for a period of 25-30 years. This provides a unique opportunity to study radionuclide transport, because the study area did not have any uranium contamination predating the stockpile in the 1980s. One high-grade boulder was selected for study based upon its shape, location, and high activity. The presumed drip-line off of the boulder was marked, samples from the boulder surface were taken, and then the boulder was moved several feet away. Soil samples were taken from directly beneath the boulder, around the drip-line, and down slope. Eight of these samples were collected in a vertical profile directly beneath the boulder. Visible flakes of boulder material were removed from the surficial soil samples, because they would have higher concentrations of U-series radionuclides and cause the activities in the soil samples to be excessively high. The vertical sampling profile used 2-inch thicknesses for each sample. The soil samples were packaged into thin plastic containers to minimize the attenuation and to standardize sample geometry, and then they were analyzed by gamma-ray spectroscopy with a Ge(Li) detector for Th-234, Pa-234, U-234, Th-230, Ra-226, Pb-214, Bi-214, and Pb-210. The raw counts were corrected for self-attenuation and normalized using BL-5, a uranium standard from Beaverlodge, Saskatchewan. BL-5 allowed the counts obtained on the Ge(Li) to be referenced to a known concentration or activity, which was then applied to the soil unknowns for a reliable calculation of their concentrations. Gamma ray spectra of five soil samples from the vertical profile exhibit decreasing activities with increasing depth for the selected radionuclides