Athabasca Hires Gravel Exploration Manager and Names New Chief Geologist
May 8, 2008
Edmonton, Alberta - May 8, 2008 - Athabasca Minerals Inc. (the "Company" or "Athabasca" - TSX Venture: ABM) is pleased to announce the hiring of a gravel exploration manager to assist in its sand and gravel exploration activities, as well as the appointment of a new chief geologist. The appointments are instrumental in the continuing strategy of becoming a major provider of industrial minerals to northern Alberta and the oil sands sector.
These appointments follow the announcement of the Company's proposal to acquire Aggregates Management Inc. (AMI), which manages the Susan Lake Gravel Pit, one of the largest sand and gravel pits in Canada, located approximately 80 km north of Fort McMurray in Northeast Alberta. Details regarding this proposed acquisition can be viewed on the Company press release dated May 1, 2008.
Over the past nine years production at the Susan lake Gravel Pit has grown on an average of approximately 130% per year and produced 7.2 million tonnes in 2007 alone. Since opening in 1998, the Susan Lake Gravel Pit has supplied more than 32 million tonnes of sand and gravel primarily to the City of Fort McMurray for its infrastructure and to oil sands companies for their infrastructure and road construction at their plant sites.
The Company has hired Mr. Peter De Luca as a Gravel Exploration Manager. Mr. De Luca, a senior aggregate technologist and graduate of Civil Engineering Technology at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, has worked in various private and government aggregate technology positions since graduating in 1974. Mr. De Luca's principal responsibilities will be to secure private and crown lands for sand and gravel prospecting as well as evaluating the potential of aggregate deposits for quality and quantity. He will be part of a team of engineers, technologists and managers, who will develop and expand the Company's sand and gravel interests. Mr. De Luca will work closely with the Company's newly appointed Chief Geologist.
The Company has appointed Mr. Darrell Cotterill, P. Geol., as Chief Geologist, replacing Mr. Wylie Hamilton, P. Eng., who will continue to serve on the Company's Board of Directors. Mr. Cotterill, a member of the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta (APEGGA), had previously worked as an independent consultant and the "qualified person" for the Company as set out in the National Instrument 43-101. He will apply scientific methods to enhance the Company's sand and gravel exploration strategy. He has worked nearly 20 years as a geologist since graduating with a Bachelor of Science (with Distinction) degree in geology from the University of Alberta in 1989. He was employed with the Alberta Geological Survey for 11 years and has co-authored numerous reports and publications characterizing the bitumen-rich Wabiskaw Member and Murray Formation in northeast Alberta.
"The traditional methods of gravel exploration have relied mainly on local knowledge or known publications. Darrell Cotterill's background and experience in geology in the Fort McMurray area will allow us to locate new gravel deposits closer to the market," said Dom Kriangkum, President and CEO of Athabasca, "and having Peter De Luca on board will ensure that all of these new properties will be secured for our company. These team members will play a key role for Athabasca to reach its objective to become one of the major gravel players in Alberta."
The Company also has land under lease in the Grimshaw area of the Peace River region in northwest Alberta referred to as the Warrensville Gravel Pit. A September 2007 technical report prepared by independent consultant Mr. Don Peel, P. Geol., a qualified person under National Instrument 43-101, confirms that the land contains more than 10 million tonnes of sand and gravel evaluated as "a good prospect for construction projects." A full copy of this technical report is available on SEDAR.
In October 2007, Athabasca purchased two additional properties near the Warrensville Pit each approximately 160 acres in size and located within and underlain by the "Grimshaw Gravels", a pre-glacial sand and gravel deposit. Pre-glacial deposits are known to contain high quality aggregates.
About Athabasca Minerals:
Athabasca Minerals Inc. is an innovative exploration company formed to explore for mineral resources other than oil, gas and oil sands in northeast Alberta. The Company's aim is to find and develop local sources of the minerals essential to the economic development of the region (i.e. minerals used in oil sand processing, construction, and in the everyday requirements of community living). The Company has substantial land holdings in the vicinity of Fort McMurray, Alberta. The exploration prospects host an assortment of industrial minerals including salt, silica sand, gypsum, limestone, and diamonds.
Independent from its mineral exploration activities, the Company is also pursuing sand and gravel exploration and development projects throughout northern Alberta. These activities include contract works, gravel pit management, new gravel pit development and the acquisition of other sand and gravel operations.
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The TSX Venture Exchange has neither approved nor disapproved the contents of this press release.
This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements or information are based on current expectations, estimates and projections that involve a number of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by Athabasca Minerals. The forward-looking statements or information contained in this news release are made as of the date hereof and Athabasca Minerals does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements or information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless so required by applicable securities laws.