Target to resume exploration in 2019
Inf: 2.1 Blbs @ 0.61% CuEq
Warintza is a porphyry copper-molybdenum project located in southeastern Ecuador, along the same trend as the Mirador copper-gold and San Carlos Panantza copper projects.
The Warintza Project covers four known copper-molybdenum target areas: Warintza Central, Warintza West, Warintza East and Warintza South. All were originally identified as a result of regional stream sediment sampling, followed by increasingly detailed soil and rock chip sampling along with geological mapping.
The Warintza property exhibits classic porphyry mineralization, with low-grade copper and molybdenite mineralization distributed widely across the property. Quartz veinlets, variably mineralized with pyrite, chalcopyrite and molybdenite, form stockworks. Locally, the stockwork grades into a hydrothermal breccia, containing rotated fragments of altered quartz latite porphyry in a quartz-sericite-sulphide cement. The hydrothermal episode that produced the stockwork breccia re-distributed some of the existing copper-molybdenum mineralization and probably introduced additional copper into the system.
Only one of four defined targets has been drilled at Warintza
Only a small portion of the property has been tested to date. The current mineral resource estimate is based on 33 core holes drilled at Warintza Central. Significant zones of higher grade supergene chalcocite exist, with 12 of the drill holes intersecting significant widths of copper mineralization assaying > 1.0% copper. Only one of the four defined targets has been drilled and the limits of mineralization at Warintza Central have not been defined.
Drilling results were incorporated into a 2013 resource estimate for the project, outlining 195 M tonnes of inferred resources grading 0.42% copper and 0.03% molybdenum, for contained metal of 1.8 Blbs of copper and 132 Mlbs of molybdenum, with a contained copper-equivalent inferred resource of 2.1 Blbs grading 0.61%. The results were summarized in a technical report.
The Ecuador government has reiterated its support for mining projects
The Warintza Project represents a promising exploration opportunity. The project is located in a corridor of mineralization that is known to host numerous exploration- and development-stage projects with copper, copper-gold, copper-molybdenum and high-grade gold mineralization. Step-out drilling at Warintza Central has the potential to extend the known mineralized zone and expand the existing resource. Likewise, mapping and sampling at the other target areas could identify additional drilling priorities.
The environment for mining and exploration projects in Ecuador has improved meaningfully in recent years. The Ecuador government has recently reiterated its support for mining projects, recognizing the positive economic and social opportunities that mining projects can bring to the country. Solaris Copper’s leadership team has extensive experience with government and community relations and is working in cooperation with the government to establish the relationships and social support required to recommence exploration activities at the Warintza project.