NR 117 – Liberty Star’s Arizona North Pipes Claims Secured Under DOI Moratorium
TUCSON, Ariz– January 11, 2012–Liberty Star Uranium & Metals Corp. (the “Company”) (OTCBB: LBSR): Monday US Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, confirmed that a moratorium on new uranium mining claims over approximately 1 million acres of Federal land in northern Arizona will be instated for the next 20 years. The moratorium, initially proposed in 2009, allows existing claims and mines to continue as before, including 431 standard Federal lode mining claims comprising Liberty Star’s North Pipes Super Project . The Company’s claims are in numerous separate blocks covering breccia pipe targets located on the Colorado Plateau Province of northern Arizona known as the Arizona Strip.
Secretary Salazar said the decision had to be made in light of the potential for pollution in waterways, harm to wildlife, desert vegetation and air quality around the Grand Canyon and the Colorado River watershed in spite of no scientific evidence that any of those things had or were likely to occur. The decision will certainly prevent the creation of thousands of jobs and upend a 28-year-old compromise on land use forged by environmentalists and mining proponents during the Reagan administration.
Arizona’s state geologist, Lee Allison, agrees that there are elevated uranium levels present in the northern Arizona environment, but according to his office’s evaluation, he questions whether any Colorado River pollution from mining would be detectable, given that about 60 tons of natural uranium (at a content of 3 parts per billion –ppb) flow down the river each year. The EPA allowable U content is 30 ppb in drinking water, so this content is negligible.
Liberty Star’s CEO and chief geologist, James Briscoe, responds to the moratorium:
“Repeatedly Kenneth Salazar and the Department of the Interior have stated that its environmental decisions would be guided by scientific fact. Regardless, in this case the DOI’s decision is not connected to the scientific facts repeatedly laid out by government and non-governmental experts who have studied the area for in some cases decades. The result is partial destruction of the industry that could have provided thousands of badly needed jobs and inject millions of dollars into one of the nations most depressed areas. While this decision denies everyone’s ability to make new claims in the banned area, our current claims are secured under the terms of the moratorium. Also, this edict cannot control negotiation for exploration and mining rights over privately held land in this breccia pipe rich area and region. Should the price of uranium rise and interest in the area reignite, Liberty Star is poised to continue exploration activity on its secured claims. We have outstanding targets indicated by geology, geochemistry and VTEM geophysics. During our aggressive exploration phase we collected 14,000 soil geochemical samples over both known ore bearing pipes and pipe targets on our land. Each of these samples were analyzed for 64 elements by a certified analytical lab in Canada, resulting in about 900,000 separate elemental analyses. Results of these samples we believe will verify discovery of mineral in place as required by the General Mining Law.
Because of the law of supply and demand this action by the Obama administration may make our claims more valuable than they were before because our claims will be some of the only land in the area that can be explored and be brought into production if discoveries of ore are made.”
“James A. Briscoe” James A. Briscoe, Professional Geologist, AZ CA
Liberty Star Uranium & Metals Corp.
Safe Harbor Statement:
Statements in this news release that are not historical are forward looking statements. Forward-looking statements in this news release include that should the price of uranium rise and interest in the area reignite, Liberty Star is poised to continue exploration activity on its secured claims; and that we have outstanding targets indicated by geology, geochemistry and VTEM geophysics; that results of these samples will verify discovery of mineral in place; and that the DOI action may make our claims more valuable than they were before.
Factors which may delay or prevent these forward-looking statements from being realized include misinterpretation of data; we may not be able to get equipment or labor as we need it; we may not be able to raise sufficient funds to complete our intended exploration or carry on operations; that weather, logistical problems or hazards may prevent us from exploration; that equipment may not work as well as expected; that analysis of data may not be possible accurately and at depth; and that despite encouraging data there may be no commercially exploitable mineralization on our properties. Readers should refer to the risk disclosures outlined in the Company’s recent 10-KSB and the Company’s other periodic reports filed from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Liberty Star Uranium & Metals Corp.
Tracy Myers, 520-425-1433