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Ministry of Energy Mines and Responsible for Core Review

Uranium and Thorium Occurrences in British Columbia


BCMEMPR Open File 1990-32


by L.D. Jones


Scale 1:2 000 000


View Open File (PDF, 4.89 MB)

Figure 20 (Digital Map) (PDF, 466 KB)

Table of Uranium and Thorium Occurrences from MINFILE/www Searches

Inventory Table for Uranium and Thorium Occurrences from MINFILE/www Searches

Table of Uranium and Thorium Occurrences (Excel format)


The geological diversity of British Columbia provides a wide variety of settings for the occurrence of uranium and thorium.  The Victoria deposit, a gold-silver-cobalt-molybdenum occurrence south of Hazelton, contains uraninite erratically distributed in narrow veins in granodiorite.  The Little Gem deposit, located near Gold Bridge, contains uranium, gold and cobalt in veins within granodiorite.  The Verity prospect, near Lampriere, contains uranium-bearing pyroclore in carbonatite.  Uranium and thorium occur in amphibolite at the Husselbee showing, located on the west side of Atlin Lake.  To the east, north of Surprise Lake, metazeunerite occurs in shears within quartz monzonite at the Purple Rose showing.  The Rexspar uranium deposit is in volcanic rocks north of Kamloops.  The Vowell and Malloy creek placers of the Bugaboo area contain uranium and thorium minerals in stream gravels produced from erosion of quartz monzonite rocks.  The Blizzard, Cup Lake, Hydraulic Lake, Haynes Lake, Fuki and other stratabound, basal uranium occurrences lie in fossil stream-channel sandstones and conglomerates in the Okanagan Highland and are between 1 and 4 million years of age.  Even younger deposits, which are still forming today, include the many surficial uranium-enriched post-glacial organic-rich basins located along the west side of Okanagan Lake.  They include the Prairie Flats, Covert Basin, Sinking Pond and North Wow Flat occurrences.


Of the 182 known uranium and thorium occurrences in British Columbia, only a few have the hold the grade and tonnage to have economic potential.  These include the Rexspar deposit, some of the stratabound, basal deposits and possibly the placer and surficial deposits.  Total in situ uranium in British Columbia is estimated at over 7400 tonnes of uranium. 


However, due to the availability of high-grade large-tonnage deposits elsewhere in the World and Canada, such as those in northern Saskatchewan, uranium production from deposits in British Columbia may not be economically feasible in the foreseeable future.


The main purpose of this report is to document the known uranium and thorium occurrences.  The information may be useful to geological researchers and explorers, land use planners and environmental health planners.


All printed publications of the BC Geological Survey are available digitally, free of charge, from this website.


For questions or more information on geology and minerals in British Columbia contact BCGS Mailbox or call toll free (BC Residents only).