Applications are submitted to prospect NFS landFormation Resources Incorporated has recently submitted nine prospecting applications to prospect for uranium and molybdenum on approximately 17,611 acres of National Forest System (NFS) lands.
By: Beth Wischmeyer, The Dickinson Press
DICKINSON - Formation Resources Incorporated has recently submitted nine prospecting applications to prospect for uranium and molybdenum on approximately 17,611 acres of National Forest System (NFS) lands.
The applications that were submitted are being divided between Billings County, which would cover 4,497 acres, and Slope County, which would cover 13,114 acres in the Little Missouri National Grasslands.
If the permits are issued, Formation Resources Incorporated plans to initiate surveying and sampling operations during the summer. The surveying would involve foot reconnaissance along stream bottoms and topographic lows, which would be done by a geologist.
“For this first phase, they would just walk around and do some meter reading, so in order to get that permitted it will take until about sometime in August,” said Mark Sexton, project leader from the Medora Ranger District. “Then they will be doing that all Fall due to amount of acres, and then next year if that works for them, they would submit another proposal to go drill some holes in the ground and test it to see what’s down there. That will take pretty much all next year.”
Sexton added that if there were promising results from the drilling holes, Formation would be required to file another proposal in order to develop further the resources found. All said and done, the process could take 2-3 years.
Sexton added that having possible uranium and molybdenum resources is something new to National Forest System Lands.
“We haven’t had uranium out here for 30 years, that’s relatively new,” Sexton said. “These proposals are showing up all over the country. There are a lot of other units that are dealing with it.”
High radiometric readings by the geologist in certain areas would be sampled using a 300 foot grid pattern. The sampling would entail removing a square foot of sod with a hand shovel, and taking a five to six pound soil sample.
If the prospecting permits are issued, the permits only allow Formation to collect information about potential uranium and molybdenum deposits. The permits would convey no rights to mineral development or production.
A public meeting to discuss the proposed project will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 15 on the top floor of Belfield Memorial Hall.
For more information on the proposal, contact project leader Mark Sexton at 701-227-7800.