Highland Copper Company Inc. (the "Company") is pleased to announce the commencement of a drilling program at its 100%-owned Copperwood project in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, U.S.A. This program is designed to upgrade the current inferred resources at the eastern section of the Copperwood copper-silver deposit, obtain metallurgical samples and carry out further geotechnical studies to refine a mining plan.
Highland Copper plans to drill up to thirty five confirmatory holes totalling about 6,800 meters of core. Twelve of the thirty five planned drill holes are located in Section 5 of Gogebic County, at the westernmost edge of the Porcupine Mountain Wilderness Park west of County Road 519 (see attached map). The Company expects to complete these twelve holes by the end of March.
For the twelve holes currently being drilled in Section 5, the Company applied for and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources ("MDNR") issued a use permit allowing the Company to conduct exploration drilling under strict conditions. The Company has worked closely and cooperatively with the MDNR, making every change to the Company's drilling plan as requested. To insure minimum impact to the land surface during the drilling program and to provide protections to natural resources to the greatest extent possible, several operating provisions have been put in action, including operating only on frozen ground, using tracked drill rigs on existing roads for access to drill hole locations and avoid cutting trees when feasible. The Company has in place a full remedial plan, which will be executed when drilling is complete. The vast majority of the Park, including the Presque Isle River watershed, will remain unaffected by this exploration program. The Company's employees and drill contractors are working with the MDNR Parks and Recreation Division to monitor activities and insure compliance with the permit.
Quality Assurance/Quality Control
The Company maintains a rigorous QA/QC program with respect to the preparation, shipping, analysis and checking of all samples and data from the properties. Quality control for drill programs at the Company's projects covers the complete chain of custody of samples, including verification of drill hole locations, core handling procedures and analytical-related work, including duplicate sampling, check analyses at other laboratories and the insertion of standard and blank materials. The QA/QC program also includes data verification procedures.
The technical information contained in this news release has been approved by Carlos H. Bertoni, P. Geo., Highland's Executive Vice President, Project Development. Mr. Bertoni is a qualified person as defined in NI 43-101.