Texas-Based Company Pushes Development Of Huge Uranium Deposits in Wyoming

EnCore, a Texas-based uranium producer, is developing huge uranium deposits throughout Wyoming. Its top priority is to pull out of the ground 8 million pounds of uranium at its Gas Hills project, located 45 miles east of Riverton.

Pat Maio

March 27, 20244 min read

EnCore Energy Corp. owns uranium assets in Texas and other states, and is expanding its footprint with potentially huge uranium deposits in Wyoming.
EnCore Energy Corp. owns uranium assets in Texas and other states, and is expanding its footprint with potentially huge uranium deposits in Wyoming. (Courtesy EnCore Energy Corp.)

EnCore Energy Corp., a Corpus Christi, Texas-based uranium producer seeing a resurgence in its commodity due to tight global supplies, is in various stages of developing huge uranium deposits throughout Wyoming.

The business also is in midst of selling its Juniper Ridge uranium mining project in Carbon County that doesn’t fit with its in-situ recovery strategy of pulling uranium out of the ground with water.

To date, EnCore has focused on three uranium operations in South Texas to fuel its growth.

But that strategy is changing as global supplies remain tight, the United States is beginning to embrace tiny nuclear reactors as a form of clean energy, and fears grow over dependence on Russia for enriched uranium as that nation’s war aims in Ukraine continue to drag on.

“There is a critical shortage of uranium,” said William Sheriff, EnCore’s executive chairman.

Sheriff told Cowboy State Daily that this is why his company plans to bring online a handful of its uranium finds in Wyoming by 2027.

The exception is Juniper Ridge, which came to EnCore from Canadian-based Azarga Uranium Corp. when the companies combined in September 2021.

“We won’t ever bring that into production because it is a mine,” Sheriff said. “You need big shovels, and that’s not our expertise.”

Most of the offers for the mine with an estimated 6 million pounds of uranium involve cash and a minority stake in the acquiring company, he said.

“It’s a good asset, but it’s not for us,” Sheriff said. “There’s a lot of interest in picking it up.”

8 Million Pounds Near Riverton

Instead of digging up uranium in a mine or surface pit, EnCore performs in-situ recovery of the mineral. This kind of operation involves pumping oxygenated water with an occasional addition of bicarbonate of soda into the ground to get at the uranium.

The uranium is dissolved and pumped to the surface, where the mineral is stripped from the water. The water stripped of uranium is then returned underground.

EnCore also has a 19.9% equity position in Canadian-based Nuclear Fuel Inc., another Wyoming uranium company that has drilled several spots within a 42-square-mile area near Kaycee in Johnson County that shows evidence of more than 2 million pounds of recoverable uranium.

Outside of Texas, EnCore’s biggest priority is to pull out of the ground about 8 million pounds of uranium at its Gas Hills project, which is located about 45 miles east of Riverton, Wyoming, on roughly 1,280 acres.

EnCore plans to spend about $26 million to begin production on Gas Hills in 2027.

Sheriff said that EnCore hopes to begin drilling test cores this summer on a geologic formation in Wyoming called Dewey Terrace that extends over the state border to its Dewey-Burdock project in South Dakota.

“South Dakota sits on 17 million pounds of uranium, and it extends over the state line to Wyoming,” he said. “We’ll be drilling in Wyoming to see if we can tie those two projects together. If we can tie them together, Wyoming gives us another decade of production. We just don’t know how much is there.”

Last month, EnCore raised $70 million in a cash and stock deal with Boss Energy Ltd., an Australian uranium producer, through the sale of a minority interest in EnCore’s Alta Mesa uranium project in South Texas.

That money is expected to accelerate its uranium production pipeline across South Texas and pave the way for “aggressive expansion” of EnCore’s Dewey Terrace and Dewey-Burdock projects straddling the Wyoming and South Dakota border and quicken development of its Gas Hills project.

EnCore’s Aladdin project in northeastern Wyoming in Crook County is on hold because it is too small to grow for realistic production, Sheriff said.

Pat Maio can be reached at pat@cowboystatedaily.com.

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Pat Maio


Pat Maio is a veteran journalist who covers energy for Cowboy State Daily.