NioCorp Secures Key Federal Government Permit for its Elk Creek Superalloy Materials Project
CENTENNIAL, Colo. (June 26, 2017) – NioCorp Developments Ltd. (“NioCorp” or the “Company”) (TSX: NB; OTCQX: NIOBF; and FSE: BR3) announces that it has secured a key federal permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (“USACE” or the “Corps”) for the Company’s proposed Elk Creek Superalloy Materials Project (the “Project”) in Nebraska.
The U.S. Clean Water Act (“CWA”) Section 404 permit authorizes NioCorp to build all of the Elk Creek Project’s proposed 33-mile waterline to the Missouri River except for the final 900 feet and outfall structure in the River. Construction of that final section is subject to USACE authorization under both CWA Sections 408 and 404, which NioCorp is currently working to secure.
The balance of NioCorp’s proposed Elk Creek Project, including the underground mine, surface processing facilities, and tailings impoundment, are expected to have no permanent impacts to water features subject to CWA regulation and thus are able to proceed to construction without discretionary authorization from the Corps.
“Obtaining a Clean Water Act Section 404 federal permit is a major milestone for virtually any mining or natural resource development project in the U.S., and we are very pleased to have secured this authorization,” said Mark A. Smith, Executive Chair and CEO of NioCorp. “Once sufficient project financing is in place, our other federal permit is secured for the waterline’s outfall structure, and state and local permits are finalized, we should be clear to launch construction of this important U.S. national infrastructure project.”
“We want to express our thanks and appreciation to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the highly professional manner in which they have approached this Project from day one,” Mr. Smith added. “We look forward to completing the process for the Section 408 permit in as expeditious a manner as possible.”
On Behalf of the Board of Directors,
Executive Chairman, CEO, and Director
Qualified Persons: Mark A. Willow, M.Sc., C.E.M., SME-RM, Principal Environmental Scientist and Practice Leader / NA Director, SRK Consulting (U.S.), Inc., a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, has read and approved the technical information contained in this news release.
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Source: NioCorp Developments Ltd.
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NioCorp is developing a superalloy materials project in Southeast Nebraska that will produce niobium, scandium, and titanium. Niobium is used to produce superalloys as well as High Strength, Low Alloy ("HSLA") steel, which is a lighter, stronger steel used in automotive, structural, and pipeline applications. Scandium can be combined with Aluminum to make super-high-performance alloys with increased strength and improved corrosion resistance. Scandium also is a critical component of advanced solid oxide fuel cells. Titanium is used in various superalloys and has extensive uses in aerospace, defense, transportation, medical, and other applications. It also is a key component of pigments used in paper, paint and plastics.
Neither TSX nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this document. Certain statements contained in this document may constitute forward-looking statements, including but not limited to NioCorp’s ability to secure permits necessary to enable the Project to be constructed and to operate, and the scope and timing of such permits. Such forward-looking statements are based upon NioCorp’s reasonable expectations and business plan at the date hereof, which are subject to change depending on economic, political and competitive circumstances and contingencies. Readers are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause a change in such assumptions and the actual outcomes and estimates to be materially different from those estimated or anticipated future results, achievements or position expressed or implied by those forward-looking statements. Risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause NioCorp’s plans or prospects to change include risks related to the Company's ability to operate as a going concern; risks related to the Company's requirement of significant additional capital; changes in demand for and price of commodities (such as fuel and electricity) and currencies; changes in economic valuations of the Project, such as Net Present Value calculations, changes or disruptions in the securities markets; legislative, political or economic developments; the need to obtain permits and comply with laws and regulations and other regulatory requirements; the possibility that actual results of work may differ from projections/expectations or may not realize the perceived potential of NioCorp’s projects; risks of accidents, equipment breakdowns and labor disputes or other unanticipated difficulties or interruptions; the possibility of cost overruns or unanticipated expenses in development programs; operating or technical difficulties in connection with exploration, mining or development activities; the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development, including the risks of diminishing quantities of grades of reserves and resources; and the risks involved in the exploration, development and mining business and the risks set forth in the Company’s filings with the SEC at www.sec.gov. NioCorp disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.