LithiumBank says Boardwalk lithium brine project's PEA generates pre-tax NPV of $2.7B
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(Kitco News) - On Thursday, LithiumBank Resources (TSX-V: LBNK) announced the highlights from the initial preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for the Boardwalk lithium brine project located in west-central Alberta.
The Boardwalk property is located in west-central Alberta, Canada, directly south and west of the Town of Valleyview. LithiumBank indicated it has 100% ownership of the mineral rights at the Boardwalk property.
The company said that lithium resource at Boardwalk is dissolved in the brine water contained within the Leduc Formation, adding that lithium will be produced by pumping the brine to the surface through vertical or deviated wells and then by pipeline to the central processing facility.
The project is targeting a total lithium brine production rate of 250,000 m3/d over a period of 20 years from 50 production wells. The lithium processing facility is designed to a nameplate production capacity of approximately 31,800 metric tonnes per annum of battery grade lithium hydroxide monohydrate (28,000 metric tonnes per annum LCE).
Lithium is preferentially extracted through the direct lithium extraction (DLE) ion exchange technology. Battery grade lithium hydroxide monohydrates are produced through two stages of crystallization, followed by drying and packaging.
The company noted that the processing stages that follow the DLE extraction are similar to what is used in the processing of other lithium-rich bines around the world and are well understood and commonly used.
According to PEA highlights, the project's pre-tax NPV(8) is $2.7 billion and IRR is 21.6% with payback of 4.1 operating years; while after-tax NPV(8) is $1.7 billion and IRR is 17.8% with payback of 4.5 operating years. OPEX is $6,807/tonne LHM. Project economics used $26,000/t LHM and provides "strong leverage" to higher lithium prices.
The company also pointed out that there are multiple opportunities to "significantly enhance" project economics through optimization, further engineering, and pending incentive tax credit.
"Over the last 15 months, our PEA has rigorously tested or assessed over a dozen DLE technologies, completed multiple trade off studies and has established Boardwalk as an economically viable project in the new post-pandemic financial environment," said Executive Chairman Paul Matysek.
"Boardwalk is unique with an uncomplicated mineral title containing a 6.2M tonne LCE brine resource that has the potential to produce battery grade LHM for 20 years, right here in North America. Furthermore, there is potential for substantial upside on these economics from the recently announced Canadian Investment Tax Credit and other numerous optimization opportunities," he added.
LithiumBank Resources is a lithium brine exploration and development company that is focused on developing their flagship projects in western Canada. The Boardwalk project is based on a lithium hydroxide monohydrate plant that will use the DLE technology.
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