Copper grades stack up nicely for Peel Mining ahead of maiden Wirlong resource
Peel Mining is celebrating more high-grade results from its Wirlong copper deposit as it moves towards declaring a maiden resource at the growing discovery.
Peel Mining (ASX:PEX) has its tail up over results from diamond drilling including 31.1m at 1.91% copper and 9g/t silver from 260m at Wirlong, located in the New South Wales-based south Cobar hub.
The Babushka-like hit contains narrower intercepts at higher grades, including 17.05m at 2.87% Cu and 13g/t Ag from 262m, with 6.45m at 5.01% Cu and 23g/t Ag from 272.6m within that.
WLDD022 was a winner too, striking 19m at 2.34% Cu and 10g/t Ag from 203m including 11m at 3.52% Cu, 16g/t Ag from 207m and 4.15m at 7.23% Cu, 32g/t Ag from 213.85m, while WLDD025 hit 14m at 3.11% Cu, 16g/t Ag from 210m.
The results following up high grade hits reported last month at Wirlong. Peel has two diamond drill rigs onsite to help it build a maiden resource estimate by June.
These results, particularly WLDD019, point to the discovery of a new high-grade lens.
“At Wirlong, each batch of drill results continues to yield high-grade copper mineralisation and advances our understanding of the deposit,” Peel MD Rob Tyson said.
“The latest results point to the possible discovery of a new high-grade lens, as returned in drillhole WLDD019 – 17.05m @ 2.87% Cu from 262m.
“The intersection is consistent with our belief that Wirlong represents a stacked-lens style of mineralised system and is a welcome development.”
It is a good time to be in copper.
While prices have come down ~12% from record highs of over US$10,700/t seen in mid-May, at around US$4.30/lb the price environment is supporting strong margins for copper producers, and investors are itching to get a taste of the red metal.
Even the Commbank, which has a bearish take on the outlook of most major commodities over the coming years, is positive on the support onrushing electrification will have for the bellwether industrial base metal.
“Spending on a decarbonised economy is expected to help copper demand rise over the next decade,” analyst Vivek Dhar wrote today.
“Around 4 times more copper is used in an electric vehicle than a regular internal combustion engine (ICE) automobile.
“Renewable power systems are also 5 times more copper intensive than conventional power systems.”
While Dhar acknowledged there were doubts decarbonisation will materialise as quickly as anticipated in the coming years, CBA has updated its long term copper price forecast by 27% to US$3.20/lb.
“We think significant investment in copper supply is needed as decarbonisation efforts accelerate,” Dhar said.
Good then that Peel has several opportunities to build a significant resource and production case in its Cobar region.
Its more advanced Mallee Bull deposit is more than 6000m into a major 20,000m diamond drilling program, designed to convert lower confidence inferred resources to the higher indicated category.
Drilling is looking promising so far, with results due soon.
“Early visual results for Mallee Bull indicate the presence of high-grade copper in multiple drillholes and we look forward to receiving drill assays in the weeks ahead,” Tyson said.
Mallee Bull contains a total resource of 6.76 million tonnes at a copper equivalent grade of 2.6%, with 1.35Mt for 2.15%CuEq in the indicated column.
It also boasts declared resources at the gold dominant May Day gold-silver-zinc-lead deposit and the Southern Nights/Wagga Tank zinc-lead-silver project.
This article was developed in collaboration with Peel Mining, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.