Mount Edwards scoping study delayed

Drilling conducted by Widgie Nickel in WA. Image: Supplied by…

Drilling conducted by Widgie Nickel in WA. Image: Supplied by Widgie Nickel.

Widgie Nickel’s scoping study for its Mount Edwards nickel project in WA has been delayed to February 2024.

The nickel and lithium explorer cited allowing the mineral resource estimates (MRE) for the Widgie 3 and Gillett deposits to be included in the early years of the mine plan as the reason for the delay. However, it confirmed that the scoping study draft is “essentially complete”.

The current Gillett inferred MRE is 643 kilotons at 1.3 per cent nickel, and the current inferred Widgie 3 MRE is 626kt at 1.5 per cent nickel.

“The scoping study delay is frustrating; however, this delay is necessary in order to increase the level of high confidence material in the early years,” Widgie Nickel managing director and chief executive officer Steve Norregaard said.

“We knew during the process that a Widgie 3 and Gillett resource update would come soon after the scoping study release with three further resource upgrades thereafter. Further, there are an additional five deposits at Mount Edwards that aren’t considered in the study.

“The work completed to date on the scoping study is extremely comprehensive for this level of study and should demonstrate that Widgie is in a unique position, with its resource base able to support a standalone processing operation.”

The scoping study is expected to provide foundation for Widgie to move towards completing a pre-feasibility study during 2024.

The nickel explorer has also confirmed that it’s still active in discussions with potential offtake partners for the Faraday-Trainline lithium project, which is central to the Mount Edwards project and recently saw a 375 per cent increase in lithium mineral resources.

“On Faraday-Trainline, we are still active in discussions with potential partners, however we are very cognisant of current conditions in the lithium market and want to ensure that we do the right deal, not just a deal for the sake of it,” Norregaard said.

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