/NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO U.S. NEWSWIRE SERVICES OR DISSEMINATION IN THE
TSX Trading Symbol: UTS
CALGARY, March 26 /CNW/ - UTS Energy Corporation ("UTS") is pleased to
announce preliminary results from the 185 core hole drilling program which was
completed during the first quarter of 2007.
"The drilling results on Lease 14 are consistent with our previous
estimates and we believe are sufficient to support a 50,000 bbls/day of
bitumen stand-alone mining project," said William Roach, President and Chief
Executive Officer of UTS. Dr. Roach went on to discuss the exploration
program. "Early analysis of our 2007 drilling program, derived from well log
interpretation, is extremely encouraging. We recognize that these results are
preliminary in nature and that we will require an extensive drilling and
delineation program over the next couple of years, but the initial indications
are that we have discovered sufficient resources in the Lease 311 area to
enable a second stand-alone project. If this is the case, then this will
provide UTS with growth opportunities and flexibility going forward."
Lease 14, 100% owned by UTS, is located in the Athabasca Oil Sands Area
and comprises approximately 7,147 acres (2,858 hectares) in Township 98,
Ranges 10 and 11 W4, on the west side of the Athabasca River, and across from
the northern boundary of the Fort Hills Oil Sands Project. It is approximately
20 kilometres north of Syncrude's Aurora North operations, and a similar
distance north of CNRL's Horizon Project, which is currently under
development. Lease 14 is also located between Shell Canada Limited's Oil Sands
Leases 9 and 17, which are at the southern end of the proposed Pierre River
Mine, as announced by Shell earlier this year.
Forty of the 96 core holes drilled this year on Lease 14 encountered
potentially mineable oil sands with preliminary estimates of thicknesses of
between 15 metres and 35 metres. Overburden thicknesses range from 20 metres
to 38 metres. These results are based on preliminary analysis of the well log
data. A total of 124 core holes have now been drilled on Lease 14, including
28 drilled in early 2006 to delineate the resource. This drilling density
represents roughly one core hole per LSD over the prospective eight sections.
These results are consistent with management's belief that Lease 14
contains sufficient exploitable crude bitumen resource to support a
stand-alone or a satellite mining project of 50,000 bbls/day of bitumen.
Results of the detailed core analyses and the independent engineering estimate
of contingent bitumen resources are expected in the fourth quarter of 2007.
Teck Cominco Limited ("Teck Cominco") has an option to acquire 50% of Lease 14
at fair market value.
Lease 311 & Area
Lease 311 comprises approximately 11,520 acres (4,608 hectares) and is
located 10 kilometres north of Lease 14 in Township 100, Range 11 W4 in the
Athabasca Oil Sands Area. Lease 311 is owned jointly with Teck Cominco on a
50:50 basis. UTS and Teck Cominco also jointly own Leases 477, 610 and 840,
contiguous and directly to the north of Lease 311 (comprising about 43,520
acres, or 17,408 hectares) and Leases 468 and 470 contiguous and directly west
of Lease 311 (comprising about 10,240 acres, or 4,096 hectares).
Oil sands were encountered in all 33 wells drilled on Lease 311, with 25
containing potentially mineable oil sands with estimated thicknesses of
between 15 metres and 40 metres. Overburden thicknesses range from 14 metres
to 43 metres. Including the six drilled in early 2006, a total of 39 core
holes have been drilled on Lease 311 to evaluate the resource potential
resulting in a minimum coverage of two core holes per section throughout the
entire 18 section Lease.
A further 34 core holes were drilled on the Leases surrounding Lease 311.
Of these, 23 encountered potentially mineable oil sands with estimated
thicknesses of between 15 metres and 41 metres. Overburden thicknesses range
from 30 metres to 58 metres.
Results of the detailed core analyses and the independent engineering
estimate of bitumen resources are expected by the fourth quarter of 2007.
Drilling results from Lease 311 and the surrounding area comprising of
Leases 468, 470 and 477 are very encouraging and confirm the existence of
potentially mineable oil sands on the west side of the Athabasca River. Early
results indicate excellent potential for a significant mineable oil sands
resource, estimated to be between 20 and 34 sections in extent, within this
Additionally, 22 core holes were drilled on other exploration leases also
held jointly on a 50:50 basis with Teck Cominco. Results from these core holes
did not find mineable oil sands and will require further analysis and
additional drilling to assess the prospectivity of these other Leases.
As a result of the successes from this winter's exploration program, UTS
and Teck Cominco have commenced developing preliminary plans for a program of
up to 400 core holes next winter. The focus of this program will be to
extensively delineate Lease 311 and surrounding area comprising of Leases 468,
470 and 477 with approximately 300 additional core holes. A further 70 to 100
core holes will target continued evaluation of the other exploration leases.
"This is an exciting time for UTS, with the preliminary results from our
winter drilling program reflecting a successful and prudent strategy of
exploration and land acquisition, which has been conducted jointly with our
partner, Teck Cominco, over the last year," stated Dr. Roach "We anticipate
that the continued development of these opportunities will demonstrate
significant organic growth for UTS."
UTS Energy Corporation is based in Calgary, Alberta. The Company's common
shares (symbol: UTS) are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange. The Company has
two strategic areas of focus. Firstly, the development and execution of the
Fort Hills Project, a mining project with a 4.7 billion barrels contingent
resource. UTS owns a 30 percent working interest with partners, Petro-Canada
with a 55 percent working interest and Operator, and Teck Cominco with a 15
percent working interest. Secondly, the Corporation is focused on the
exploration and development of oil sands leases held jointly by UTS and Teck
Cominco. These lands, consisting of 257,920 acres, if prospective, provide
organic growth opportunities and potentially future funding flexibility for
UTS. For further information please see our Annual Information Form filed on
SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: Except for statements of historical fact
relating to the Company, this news release contains certain "forward-looking
statements" within the meaning of applicable securities law. Forward-looking
statements are frequently characterized by words such as "plan", "expect",
"project", "intend", "believe", "anticipate", "estimate" and other similar
words, or statements that certain events or conditions "may" or "will" occur.
Forward-looking statements such as the references to extent of resources and
the interpretation of well log data referenced in this news release are based
on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are
made, and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other
factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from
those anticipated in the forward-looking statements. The Company undertakes no
obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or
management's estimates or opinions should change except as required by law.
The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward looking
For further information:
For further information: Dr. William J. F. Roach, President and Chief
Executive Officer, or Wayne I. Bobye, Vice President and Chief Financial
Officer, at (403) 538-7030