Québec mines

Bulletin d'information minière

June 2004
  • Diamonds in the Apple formation? >>
    • the paleoplacer model >>
    • Apple Formation and alluvial diamonds – A comparison  >>
    • References >>
  • The top five business opportunities in Québec >>
    • high-purity and very high-purity silica >>
    • talc >>
    • magnesite >>
    • calcium carbonate >>
    • apatite >>
  • Budget newsflash>>
    Tax incentives related to natural resources are upgraded
  • Discovery of a new alkaline complex in the Urban-Barry belt >>
  • Exploration in the Cadillac mining camp: Five projects are a resounding success! >>
  • Geochemical inventory in the Manicouagan MRC: A profitable partnership for everyone >>
  • Québec Exploration 2004
    The preliminary program has been released >>
  • Exploration for magnesite and brucite in Québec >>

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



June 2004
 

Diamonds in the Apple Formation?

Claude Dion and Jean Goutier
Direction de Géologie Québec

The discovery of diamond-bearing kimberlite intrusions in the Baie James region in recent years has triggered an explosion of exploration activity in this part of Québec’s Near North. The link between kimberlites and diamond deposits is an exploration model that has proven its worth both in Québec and throughout the world. There are however other types of unconventional diamond deposits that also offer interesting potential, namely diamond-bearing paleoplacers. The Apple Formation represents a potential host unit for this type of deposit. The discovery of diamonds in sedimentary rocks of the Apple Formation would have a considerable impact, both from an economic (new and easily detectable target for high-quality diamonds) and a scientific standpoint (evidence of an Archean kimberlitic intrusive episode in the Superior craton).

Geology
The paleoplacer model
Apple Formation and alluvial diamonds – A comparison
References


Diamonds in the Apple Formation?

Claude Dion and Jean Goutier
Direction de Géologie Québec

The paleoplacer model

Paleoplacers contain significant amounts of gold or uranium. The best example is the colossal Witwatersrand Au-U district in South Africa, from which more than 48,670 tonnes of gold and 165,000 tonnes of U3O8 have been extracted between 1886 and 2000, i.e. roughly 40% of all the gold extracted since the early days of mankind (Frimmel and Minter, 2002). What is less well known however is that some paleoplacers also contain important concentrations of detrital diamond, similar to recent placer deposits in Namibia, Brazil or India. Although the productivity of these recent or older deposits is generally lower than that of primary deposits (kimberlites or lamproites), their economic impact is fairly significant given the superior quality of recovered diamonds.

In his review of diamond-bearing paleoplacers, Konstantinovskii (2003) noticed a discontinuous and irregular increase in the number of these paleoplacers through geological time, a growing trend that may be related to an increase in kimberlitic volcanism through time. This author reports the existence of a few Archean diamond-bearing paleoplacers, namely those in the Witwatersrand Basin in South Africa and Nullagine in Western Australia. Prior to the development of modern crushing methods, diamonds were reportedly recovered from the processing of Witwatersrand gold ore (Roscoe and Minter, 1993). Several stones of interesting size and quality were also recovered from uraniferous quartz pebble conglomerates in the Nullagine area, in the Pilbara craton of Australia. In both cases, the primary source of diamonds (kimberlites) is unknown and has probably been completely eroded.


Diamonds in the Apple Formation?

Claude Dion and Jean Goutier
Direction de Géologie Québec

Apple Formation and alluvial diamonds – A comparison

Given the similarity between these different paleoplacer-type Archean deposits, the possibility of finding diamonds in conglomerates of the Apple Formation is certainly worth considering. A few factors support this possibility:

  • Sedimentary rocks of the Apple Formation were deposited on a basement that represents a Mesoarchean craton. This setting suggests a relatively early lithospheric root for this part of the Superior craton, which is considered a favourable criterion for the formation and preservation of diamonds in the mantle.
  • Although no Archean kimberlites have yet been recognized in the Lac Yasinski area, the fertile nature of the underlying Archean mantle is indicated by the presence of diamonds in Wawa-type heterolithic mafic to ultramafic dykes sampled by Dianor Resources in the same area (PEM 1404 in map sheet 33F/06 and Lac de l’Astrée in map sheet 33F/05; Ryder, 2002). These Archean dykes are cross-cut by Proterozoic gabbro sills, and are interpreted as late to post-tectonic.

Paquette (1998) conducted a detailed study of uraniferous conglomerates of the Apple Formation, which did not reveal the presence of diamonds. However, a petrographic study of thin sections would probably not be sufficient to test this hypothesis given the restricted size of the samples and the low diamond count. A study based on a heavy mineral concentrate from a larger sample (a few tens of kilograms) should be conducted. The area around the Apple deposit is a good target area of course, but several other lenses of weakly uraniferous conglomerate are known elsewhere in the Apple Formation, in map sheets 33F/03 and 33F/06. The same exercise could also be undertaken in conglomerates and quartz arenites of the Proterozoic Sakami Formation, which are locally uraniferous as well.


Diamonds in the Apple Formation?

Claude Dion and Jean Goutier
Direction de Géologie Québec

References

FRIMMEL, H.E. – MINTER, W.E.L., 2002, Recent Developments Concerning the Geological History And Genesis of the Witwatersrand Gold Deposits, South Africa, Dans : R.J. Goldfarb et R.L. Nielsen (éditeurs), Integrated Methods for Discovery: Global Exploration in the Twenty-First Century, Society of Economic Geologists; Special Publication Number 9, pages 17-45.

GAUTHIER, M. – LAROCQUE, M. – CHARTRAND, F., 1997, Cadre géologique, style et répartition des minéralisations métalliques du bassin de La Grande Rivière, Territoire de la Baie James, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec; MB 97-30, 65 pages.

GAUTHIER, M., 2000, Styles et répartition des gîtes métallifères du territoire de la Baie-James, Chronique de la Recherche minière; volume 539, pages 17-61.

GOUTIER, J. - DOUCET, P. - DION, C. - BEAUSOLEIL, C. - DAVID, J. - PARENT, M. - DION, D.-J., 1998, Géologie de la région du lac Kowskatehkakmow (SNRC 33F/06), Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec; RG 98-16, 48 pages.

GOUTIER, J. – DION, C. – LAFRANCE, I. – DAVID, J. – PARENT, M. – DION, D.-J., 1999, Géologie de la région des lacs Langelier et Threefold (SNRC 33F/03 et 33F/04), Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec; RG 99-18, 52 pages.

GOUTIER, J. - DION, C. - OUELLET, M.-C. - DAVID, J. - PARENT, M., 2000, Géologie de la région des lacs Guillaumat et Sakami (SNRC 33F/02 et 33F/07), Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec; RG 99-15, 41 pages.

KONSTANTINOVSKII, A.A., 2003, Epochs Of Diamond Placer Formation in the Precambrian and Phanerozoic, Lithology and Mineral Resources; volume 38, pages 530-546.

PAQUETTE, L., 1998, Étude stratigraphique et métallogénique d'une séquence arénitique archéenne à conglomérats pyriteux et uranifères, Baie James, Québec, Université du Québec à Montréal (Montréal, Québec); unpublished Master’s thesis, 92 pages.

PAQUETTE, L. – GAUTHIER, M., 1997, Séquences archéennes du lac Sakami, baie James, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec; MB 97-02, 37 pages.

ROBERTSON, D.S. – PODOLSKY, T.P. – NUTTER, G.E., 1986, Other conglomerate-hosted deposits, Dans : Uranium deposits of Canada, Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy; Special volume 33, pages 52-54.

ROSCOE, S.M. – MINTER, W.E.L., 1993, Pyritic Paleoplacer Gold and Uranium Deposits, Dans : R.V. Kirkham, W.D. Sinclair, R.I. Thorpe et J.M. Duke (éditeurs), Mineral Deposit Modeling. Geological Association of Canada; Special Paper 40, pages 103-124.

RYDER, J.M., 2002, Les dykes et brèches de lamprophyre à la Baie James (Québec) : une comparaison avec les dykes et brèches de lamprophyres diamantifères de Wawa (Ontario), Dans : « L’exploration minérale au Québec, notre savoir, vos découvertes  ». Programmes et résumés 2002, 23e Séminaires d’information sur la recherche géologique, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec, DV 2002-10, page 23.


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

The Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs identified, with the cooperation of SIDEX, a number of particularly interesting industrial minerals in terms of mineral exploration potential, based on prevailing market conditions.

The potential to discover new industrial mineral deposits in Québec is very high. The geology of the Grenville geological Province, specifically, is highly prospective. Its true potential still remains to be assessed, but it may indeed have a few surprises in store for us. However, exploration for industrial minerals is closely tied to mining and processing activities as well as market conditions. The market is highly competitive and often controlled by one or a small number of major international players. Regardless of the type of industrial mineral, if the market is unable to absorb the new supply, then commercial production will not be viable.

Here is the list of industrial minerals that, in our opinion, warrant more attention from prospectors and mining companies given their discovery potential in Québec and current market conditions:

  • high purity and very high purity silica;
  • talc;
  • magnesite;
  • calcium carbonate;
  • apatite.

The value of industrial mineral shipments stood at CAN$646M in 2002, i.e. far from negligible. Given Québec’s very favourable geology, the discovery of new industrial mineral deposits could certainly increase Québec’s share of the market. However, prospectors or companies interested in this search should not go off unprepared. It is vital for them to understand the market conditions and industry specifications for the targeted commodity.

References

QUÉBEC, MRNFP, Orientations stratégiques minéraux industriels, december 2003, 24 pages (in-house document).

ROCHE, Étude des marchés de minéraux industriels utilisés comme matériel de charge ou dans d’autres applications, Ministère des Ressources naturelles du Québec, mars 2000, 366 pages (in-house document).

LES CONSEILLERS NGI inc., Bulletin stratégique – Minéraux de magnésium – Aspects économiques, SIDEX inc., 2004, 20 pages (in-house document).

SIDEX, Strategic Diversification Bulletins – www.sidex.ca

U.S. Geological Survey Minerals Yearbook


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

High-purity and very high-purity silica

A prospective high-purity silica (> 99.5% SiO2) deposit in Québec could take advantage of the opportunity to supply the silicon metal plant operated by Silicium Bécancour in Bécancour. Nearly 50% of its current supply of silica comes from out-of-province sources, namely from Labrador City. The high-technology sector is another potential market for very high-purity silica where it is used, for example, in the production of synthetic crystals in electronic applications. High-purity silica is also used in paints, catalysts, adhesives, and optic fibres (Roche, 2000; SIDEX). These silica products are derived from lascas, a high-purity form of lump quartz (> 99.9% SiO2).

In Québec, potential silica deposits include silica sands, sandstones, quartzites, and massive quartz deposits (veins and pegmatites). Once a potential source has been identified, very precise chemical analyses are required in order to determine the purity of the deposit. It should be equal to or greater than 99.5% SiO2 (SIDEX).

Silica sand dune at the Îles-de-la-Madeleine
Source : virtu_ILES


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

Talc

The growing talc trade between Canada and the United States makes the discovery and mining of high-grade talc deposits in Québec a very interesting business opportunity. American imports have nearly tripled since 1990, reaching 232,000 tonnes in 2002, 50% of which come from Canada. Most of the talc used in North America is a high-grade variety which is purified, then finely ground and used in paints, papers, and plastics (SIDEX).


Talc sample
Source : Image archives
Areas with the best potential include dolomitic marble units in the Grenville Province and the ophiolite zone in the Appalachians. Fault zones and other structural settings constitute prospective environments for the discovery of new deposits. Given the current line of thought, a new talc deposit should contain little or no chrysotile or tremolite (SIDEX).


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

Magnesite

The magnesite market in Québec is buoyed by the presence of a magnesium metal plant operated by Norsk Hydro Canada, in Bécancour, which processes about 185,000 tonnes of magnesite per year., This represents nearly all of the magnesite imported in Canada every year. In the short term, the best business opportunity in Québec would be the discovery of a magnesite deposit to supply the Bécancour plant.

Furthermore, Canada strongly depends on magnesia imports, a form of calcined magnesite mainly used in refractories. It must import nearly 100,000 tonnes of magnesia per year, or 70% of its consumption. American magnesia imports have also nearly doubled in the last 10 years. Certain american import markets could therefore also be open for quality materials available at competitive prices (MRNFP and SIDEX).

The best location to search for magnesite in Québec is the Kilmar area, in the Outaouais region. Metasedimentary rocks of the Grenville Supergroup in surrounding areas also offer promising potential. Magnesite-rich zones are found in marbles, between aluminous gneisses to the east and quartzites to the west. Limestone or dolomite formations affected by folding and igneous activity represent the best exploration targets . In order to be economic, the magnesite deposit should be very pure and not require elaborate processing. Extracted ore should supply a magnesite concentrate in the order of 45-46% MgO , which would yield a 95-96% MgO content in the calcined product. Furthermore, the deposit should contain a minimal reserve of 2 to 2.5 million tonnes of ore (MRNFP and SIDEX).


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

Calcium carbonate

Demand for very finely micronized calcium carbonate products, with a very specific particle size range, and a high brightness index, is growing in Canada, the United States, and Asia. These products are mainly used as fillers in the paper and paint industries. In the paper industry, for example, Canadian demand is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 15% (ROCHE, 2000).

The production of quality calcium carbonate mineral fillers requires the use of very pure, very white limestones or calcitic marbles, with a high brightness index. In Québec, high-purity white limestones are currently being mined in the Bedford area, in the Montérégie region, for use as mineral fillers. Marble formations associated with metasedimentary assemblages in the Grenville Province are likely to host pure calcitic marble layers that may be suitable for the production of mineral fillers. Grenville marbles occur in vast expanses in western Québec, between Gatineau and Mont-Laurier in the Outaouais region. although the latter However, marbles from the Mont Laurier area often contain impurities which makes them unattractive as fillers.


Industrial Minerals
The top five business opportunities in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

Apatite

The United States is the most important phosphate producer and the largest consumer of phosphate fertilizer in the world. The fertilizer market was on the rise again in 2002. Worldwide demand, mainly in Asia and North America (USGS), is expected to climb at an annual rate of 2.1% from 2003 to 2008. Québec must import 100% of the apatite processed in local fertilizer plants.

In Québec, carbonatites and anorthositic rocks are the two most prospective geological settings for the discovery of economic apatite deposits. SOQUEM is currently completing a feasibility study on a sizeable apatite-ilmenite deposit located in the Sept-Îles layered mafic complex (MRNFP).


BUDGET NEWSFLASH
Tax incentives related to natural resources are upgraded

Jocelyne Lamothe
Direction du développement minéral

In the Budget Speech delivered on March 30, 2004, the government acknowledged the fact that mineral exploration is an important activity that needs its consistent support. Not only is the government making the flow-through share regime permanent, but it has also improved the tax credit for resources.

The main changes brought about by the new tax support measures are as follows:

Before
budget

After
budget

Flow-through share regime

 

Permanent regime

Basic deduction of eligible exploration expenditures

100%
100%

For an individual, in addition to the basic deduction:

First additional deduction (expenditures in Québec)

10.42%
25%

Second additional deduction (surface expenditures)

20.83%
25%

 

 
------------
----------

Total deduction (surface expenditures incurred in Québec)

131.25%

150%

Deduction related to certain issuance expenditures

Moratorium
Permanent

Additional capital gains exemption for certain resource-related assets

Moratorium
Permanent
Tax credit for resources

 

Companies not mining a mineral resource

Expenditures related to a mineral resource in the Near or Far North

Refundable credit

33.75%
38.75%

Non-refundable credit

11.25%
6.25%
 
------------
------------

Total

45%
45%

Expenditures related to a mineral resource elsewhere in Québec

Refundable credit

30%

35%

Non-refundable credit

15%
10%
 
---------
--------

Total

45%
45%

Amount of time for which the non-refundable credit may be deferred

7 years
10 years


Discovery of a new alkaline complex in the Urban-Barry belt

Pierre Rhéaume, Daniel Bandyayera et Kamal N. M. Sharma
Direction de Géologie Québec

Recent fieldwork by Géologie Québec in the Abitibi region has outlined a new alkaline complex, the economic potential of which remains to be determined. This discovery was made in the course of a metallogenic synthesis of the Urban-Barry belt and a mapping survey in the Lac Lagacé area, under the 2003-2006 three-year plan for the Abitibi and Baie James regions.

The occurrence consists of an isolated area of outcrop exposed on an island on Lac Lacroix. This zone is located within an elliptical positive magnetic anomaly of 3 km by 4 km in size, bounded to the north by the Ranan fault and to the south by the Lacroix fault.

The outcrop area shows an assemblage of sodic alkaline rocks that contain 20 to 30% nepheline, 10 to 20% albite, 20 to 25% phlogopite and green biotite, and 20 to 25% carbonates (calcite).

Click for enlargement

Sample of carbonate-nepheline-bearing alkaline rock (A),
showing an enclave rimmed by an alteration zone (B)

The abundance of coarse-grained carbonate crystals and of nepheline, as well as the sodic nature of the rock, are typical of carbonatites. Moreover, these alkaline rocks exhibit cm-scale compositional layering defined by important variations in the biotite and phlogopite content. They also exhibit a tectonic foliation, at an angle of 20 to 30º relative to the compositional layering. The degree of deformation suggests the rocks are Archean in age, similar to other known carbonatites in the Abitibi such as Dolodau, Lac Shortt, Grevet and Douay. Information available to date is not sufficient to assess the distribution of these alkaline rocks, although it may quite likely coincide with the elliptical magnetic anomaly described above. Overall, alkaline rocks at Lac Lacroix show many similarities with the Saint-Honoré and Dolodau carbonatites (Bédard and Chown, 1992), where a syenite border facies surrounds a central carbonatite zone.

An unusual metallogenic setting

Carbonatite-syenite alkaline complexes offer an interesting metallogenic setting. On the one hand, these intrusions may host magmatic (primary) mineralization in high-technology metals such as niobium, tantalum and other rare earth elements, as well as certain industrial minerals such as apatite and nepheline. Niobium deposits at the Niobec mine and at Oka are two examples. On the other hand, a close relationship has been established in the Abitibi between certain gold deposits and carbonatites. In Québec, the Simard showing (Dolodau carbonatite), the Lac Shortt mine (2.7 Mt @ 4.6 g/t Au) and the Douay West deposit (0.57 Mt @ 5.7 g/t Au) are good examples of this type of mineralization. In Ontario, an association between alkaline rocks and gold mineralization is recognized in the Kirkland Lake district (Ploeger and Crocket, 1980) and at Springpole Lake (Red Lake area; Barron et al. 1989).

The area warrants additional work aimed at better defining the geological context and the economic potential of this discovery.

References

BANDYAYERA D., RHÉAUME, P., DOYON, J., SHARMA K.N.M., 2003, Géologie de la région du lac Hébert (SNRC 32G03), RG 2003-07, Ministère des Ressources Naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs.

BARRON, K. M., DUKE, N. A., HODDER, R.W., 1989, Petrology of the Springpole lake Alkalic volcanic complex, In Geoscience research grant program summary of research 1988-1989, Ontario Geological Survey Miscellaneous Paper 143, pp. 133 – 146.

BÉDARD, L.P., CHOWN, E.H.,1992, The Dolodau dykes, Canada : an example of an archean carbonatite, Mineralogy and Petrology, volume 46, pp. 109-121.

PLOEGER, F.R., CROCKET, J.H., 1980, Relationship of gold to syenitic intrusive rocks in Kirkland Lake In R.W. Hodder and W. Petruk, Geology of Canadian gold deposits, Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, Special volume 24, pp. 69 – 72


Exploration in the Cadillac mining camp:
Five projects are a resounding success!

Pierre Doucet
Direction de Géologie Québec

The Cadillac-Larder Lake Break hosts deep-seated mineral potential. Five exploration projects located in the Cadillac mining camp provide ample proof of this. Significant gold ore zones have been delineated within the fault zone at Lapa, Pandora, LaRonde II, Westwood and the "J" zone at the Doyon mine. Furthermore, the Lapa deposit represents one of the most important mining discoveries to take place in Québec in recent years. Other projects such as those in the 36 East Zone at the former O’Brien mine and below the former Bousquet mine are also likely to yield promising mineral potential.

Lapa project

An exploration campaign launched in 2002 on the Lapa property, held by Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd, delineated a deposit with an inferred mineral resource estimated last June at 4.0 million tonnes at a grade of 8.5 g/t Au (over one million ounces of gold). The ore zone, dubbed the Contact Zone, was traced to a depth of 1,200 metres. It remains open at depth and to the west. A second structure, the Contact South Zone, was discovered in late 2003. A few months later, Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd. announced that a 3.2 million-dollar budget would be allocated to test the depth extensions of the Contact and Contact South zones, and to test the eastward extension of the favourable geological horizon.

Pandora property

In 2003, Queenston Mining Inc. confirmed the extension of the Contact Zone onto its Pandora property, located just west of the Lapa property. The mineralized zone was identified in three locations: the Lapa Contact, Keel Contact and Central Contact zones. On January 13, 2004, the company reported a new drill program, comprising at least eight holes, would be undertaken in order to test the depth extension of the Lapa Contact Zone.

LaRonde II mine

Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd continues exploration at depth and to the west of Zone 20 North at the LaRonde mine. The latest results indicate the presence of a higher-grade gold core, and have also shown that Zone 20 North may become wider at depth, southward and westward. This project, dubbed LaRonde II, will be allocated a budget of $3.8M for exploration and feasibility studies.

Note that Agnico-Eagle Mines also intends to explore at depth underneath the 3-1 Zone at the Bousquet mine (shut down in the fall of 2002), acquired from Barrick Gold in 2003. The company is also targeting the extension of known ore zones on the Ellison property located further west. A budget of $2.3M is set aside for this work.

Westwood property

A very deep drillhole collared in November 2002 by Cambior inc. on the Westwood property, located 2 km east of the Doyon mine, intersected two mineralized zones. The first occurs along the broad extension of zones 1 and 2 of the Doyon mine, whereas the second consists of the Westwood horizon. In 2004, Cambior Inc. will drill another hole from the surface to test the depth extension of the zone, and will drive a 2.6-km-long exploration drift from the Doyon mine to reach the Westwood area.

The "J" Zone J at the Doyon mine

On March 6, 2003, Cambior Inc. released promising results from an exploration program launched in October 2002 on the “J” zone at the Doyon mine. This structure, located east of existing infrastructure at the Doyon mine, was traced to a depth of 1,000 metres and remains open at depth and eastward. Based on a preliminary evaluation, the “J” zone contains an inferred diluted resource of 356,000 tonnes at a grade of 7.5 g/t Au.

Other known showings

The Cadillac mining camp also contains the former Wood Cadillac, Central Cadillac, Kewagama, O’Brien and Thompson Cadillac (New Alger) mines. With the exception of the O’Brien mine, these consist of near-surface deposits from which only a few hundred thousand tonnes of ore were extracted. Very little exploration work has been carried out throughout this area at depths greater than 400 metres.

Radisson Mining Resources Inc. intends to test the depth potential on the O’Brien property. A drill program involving at least six holes was announced, to test the eastward and depth extension of the 36 East Zone. Other gold showings are known west of the Thompson Cadillac mine. Very little exploration has been carried out on these showings, and the gold potential at depth remains unknown.

Work by the MRNFP

Mapping by the MRNFP (Dubé and Moorhead, 2002; Lafrance et al., 2002, 2003 and 2004) has provided a better understanding of the geology in the Cadillac area. Within this framework, Fallara et al. (2003) prepared a common-earth 3D model of the area surrounding the Doyon-Bousquet-LaRonde mines, in order to synthesize all available geological, lithogeochemical and drilling data and to promote the use of this new technology as an exploration tool. The longitudinal section, which extends from the Mouska mine in the west eastward to the LaRonde mine, shows all drillholes completed in this area. Note that drillholes exceeding 500 metres depth are few and far between. This figure also shows the gradual eastward deepening of the lower boundary of known ore zones, shown in red.

Outlook

If the Contact Zone on the Pandora property extends over more than 4.5 km, as Queenston Mining Inc. seems to believe, the potential on this property is considerable. The same can be said for the eastward extension, over 1 km, of the favourable horizon on the Lapa property. Moreover, between the Doyon mine and the Westwood property, a very wide area at depth offers tremendous gold potential. Zones beneath the Ellison showing and under the Bousquet mine are currently attracting the attention of Agnico-Eagle Mines. Further south, with the exception of the O’Brien mine, a 19-plus-km segment of the Cadillac–Larder Lake Break is essentially untested at depth. This represents a considerable volume of rock. Exploration completed to date has identified several important gold zones at depth in the Cadillac mining camp, but a significant proportion of the bedrock located at more than 500 metres depth remains unexplored.

References

DUBÉ, B. – MOORHEAD, J., 2002 – Synthèse des résultats du camp minier de Doyon-Bousquet-LaRonde : problématique et objectifs, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec, Programme et résumé des conférences, 23Séminaire d’information sur la recherche géologique, DV 2002-10, page 20.

FALLARA, F. – LAFRANCE, B. – CHENG, Z.C. – BOUDRIAS, G. – CÔTÉ, J. – BÉDARD, N. – LEI, Y. – DUBÉ, B. – GALLEY, A.G., 2003. Modèle 3D géo-intégré de la Formation de Bousquet, Zone volcanique sud de la Sous-province de l’Abitibi, Québec, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs, Québec, Résumés des conférences et des photoprésentations, Québec Exploration 2003, DV 2003-09, page 24.

LAFRANCE, B. – DAVIS, D.W. – MOORHEAD, J., 2002 – Contexte stratigraphique et volcanologique du camp minier de Doyon-Bousquet-LaRonde, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec, Programme et résumé des conférences, 23Séminaire d’information sur la recherche géologique, DV 2002-10, page 21.

LAFRANCE, B. – MOORHEAD, J. – DAVIS, D.W., 2003 – Cadre géologique du camp minier de Doyon-Bousquet-LaRonde, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, Québec, ET 2002-07, 43 pages.

LAFRANCE, B. – DUBÉ, B. – GALLEY, A.G. – MERCIER-LANGEVIN, P. – CÔTÉ, J. – BÉDARD, N. – LEI, Y. – HANNINGTON, M.D. – DAVIS, D.W. – MOORHEAD, J. – PILOTE, P. – MUELLER, W.U., 2004 – Évolution volcanique et métallogénique de la Formation de Bousquet, Groupe de Blake River, Abitibi, Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs, Québec, Résumés des conférences et des photoprésentations, Québec Exploration 2003, DV 2003-09, page 23.


Geochemical inventory in the Manicouagan MRC:
A profitable partnership for everyone

Marc Beaumier
Direction de Géologie Québec

In light of persistent requests by the Manicouagan MRC (regional county municipality) and CLD (local development centre), the Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs (MRNFP) launched a search for partners to carry out a geochemical inventory of the Manicouagan MRC. Ressources Appalaches Inc., Noranda Inc., Quinto Technology Inc. and SOQUEM INC. replied to the public call for partners and showed an interest in financially supporting the geoscience study.

With its six partners and a contribution of $165,000, the MRNFP launched, in July 2003, a vast geochemical inventory, involving the recovery of some 2,948 lake sediment samples over 38,028 km2 in the Manicouagan MRC. The total cost of this survey stands at $320,000.

Fugro Airborne Surveys of Montréal was commissioned to complete the sampling program. This firm has earned a reputation throughout Canada for its expertise in carrying out this type of sampling program. At an average rate of 13.67 samples per hour, the company’s nine employees began fieldwork on August 12, 2003 and finished on September 11, 2003.


Sampling lake sediments during the field campaign in the Manicouagan MRC

Sample preparation and chemical analyses were performed by Acme Analytical Laboratories Ltd. This laboratory uses leading-edge analytical techniques that provide unrivalled resolution compared to other surveys of this type carried out by the MRNFP.

On January 30, 2004, the MRNFP forwarded the survey data to its partners. The latter have exclusive access to this data until November 22, 2005, at which time the MRNFP will officially release the results.

On February 27, 2004, the partners, including the Manicouagan MRC and CLD, duly represented by a new exploration company incorporated for this specific purpose, met to take part in a random draw of claims based on the data interpretation. Under the supervision of an external referee, seventeen properties were selected, representing a total of some 1,300 claims. At a cost of $46 per claim, this operation alone brought $59,800 into the coffers of the gouvernement du Québec.

Some of the companies involved are actively searching for partners to share the risks involved with exploration on the selected properties. The latter are scattered throughout the Manicouagan MRC. A number of exploration programs are therefore planned for the 2004 and 2005 field seasons, in order to study these areas of interest for the mineral industry.

The mineral exploration industry is thriving in the Manicouagan MRC, where a promising showing of high-purity graphite is under investigation as well as a new copper-nickel showing discovered in late 2003. These two discoveries resulted in several claim acquisitions in the area. The lake sediment geochemistry survey also contributed directly to the local boom in exploration.

The cooperation of the MRNFP and the Manicouagan MRC and CLD, along with their partners from the private sector, has made it possible to generate, in the short term, significant economic activity currently centered on mineral exploration. This undoubtedly forms the basis of a profitable partnership for everyone.


Québec Exploration 2004
The preliminary program has been released

November 22 to 25, 2004
Château Frontenac - Québec City

Let’s Talk Business!

Québec Exploration 2004 will take place from November 22nd to 25th, 2004. Back again this year after a brilliant success, this event is a great opportunity to learn about recent discoveries, targets and promising showings. It provides a unique forum to meet partners, create alliances to help advance exploration projects.

The preliminary program is available on the event website, at the following address: www.QuebecExploration.qc.ca/english/home.asp


Exploration for magnesite and brucite in Québec

Christian Morin
Direction de Géologie Québec

The Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs and SIDEX took advantage of the Prospectors and Developers Association Convention to release the latest strategic bulletin entitled Exploration for magnesite and brucite in Québec, on March 9, 2004.

A prospective magnesite mine in Québec could take advantage of a very interesting business opportunity, namely to supply the magnesium metal production plant operated by Norsk Hydro Canada in Bécancour. The latter must currently import 185,000 tonnes of magnesite per year.