|June 25, 2009
International Tower Hill Announces Resource Update at Livengood, Alaska
4.04M Ounces Gold Indicated and 3.6M Ounces Gold Inferred
Vancouver, B.C...International Tower Hill Mines Ltd. ("ITH" or the "Company") - (TSXV: ITH, NYSE-A: THM, Frankfurt: IW9) is pleased to announce the results of its independently prepared 2009 winter program mineral resource update estimate for the Money Knob deposit at its Livengood gold project near Fairbanks, Alaska (Tables 1-3). The independent study incorporates all the drilling in the 2009 winter program plus the previous drilling for an overall total of 189 diamond and reverse circulation holes (Figure 1). This new resource estimate will form the basis for the Company's initial Preliminary Economic Assessment which is scheduled to be completed July 2009.
May 2009 Livengood Resources (at 0.50 g/t gold cutoff)
Figure 1: Distribution of 2008 and 2009 drill holes incorporated into the May 2009 mineral resource estimate.
The drilling incorporated into the new resource estimate was primarily from two areas of permafrost that are best accessed in the winter months and added an average of over 20,000 ounces of gold per hole to the resource (Figure 1). The generally higher grade intervals in the SW target area raised the overall grade of the resource by approximately 5.4%. The Summer 2009 drilling program began on June 1st and, to date, has completed 25 holes of the 120 holes planned (assays pending). A 3D image of the most recently released Livengood drill information can be viewed at: http://www.corebox.net/properties/livengood.
Jeff Pontius, President and CEO of ITH stated "This most recent resource expansion has now placed the Livengood project into a small and unique group of 100% owned junior deposits, with the potential to support a very large production profile. The increase in overall grade by 5.4% and the higher confidence level of the resource will have a significant impact on the current economic modelling. The overall size and configuration of the deposit and its favourable gold recovery characteristics continue to support the project's potential for large scale, low cost production with a significant starter pit component".
Livengood Project Highlights
The Company wishes to emphasize that the Livengood project has a very favourable logistical location, being situated 110 road kilometres north of Fairbanks, Alaska along the paved all weather Elliot Highway and the Trans Alaska Pipeline Corridor and approximately 55 kilometres north of the Alaska State power grid and along the proposed Alaska natural gas pipeline route.
As a comparison, the Fort Knox mine, one of North America's larger gold mines and located 80 kilometres to the southeast of Livengood, reported in their March 30, 2007 43-101 technical report a proven and probable resource estimate of 159Mt at an average grade of 0.53g/t gold (the current Livengood resource significantly exceeds Fort Knox at this time). The Fort Knox mine has announced that they are currently commissioning a large run of mine heap leach facility to augment their current milling operations, and estimates an average heap leach recovery of 61%. The Fort Knox mine reported 2007 gold production of 338,459 ounces at a life of mine cash cost of approximately USD 390/ounce. However, the Company cautions that this information with respect to the Fort Knox property and operations could not be verified by the Company and is not necessarily indicative of the mineralization on the Livengood Property or the potential production from, or cost of, any future mining of the Livengood Property.
ITH controls 100% of its 44 square kilometre Livengood land package, which is primarily made up of fee land leased from the Alaska Mental Health Trust and a number of smaller private mineral leases. The Company and its predecessor, AngloGold Ashanti (U.S.A.) Exploration Inc., have been exploring the Livengood area since 2003, with the project's first indicated resource estimate being announced in early 2008. The 2009 drilling program is part of a series of drill initiatives marking the first grid drilling resource definition campaign for the project and is only the initial step in what the Company envisions as a major exploration program to define what it anticipates is one of the world's larger new gold deposits.
Updated Resource Estimate
On June 24 2009, Barnes Engineering Services, Inc. delivered the updated mineral resource estimate which will be incorporated into in the forthcoming report on the preliminary economic viability of the Livengood project. The updated resource estimate was prepared as at May 30, 2009 in accordance with the requirements of N.I. 43-101 and incorporates the data for all drilling through the end of May 2009.
The May 2009 indicated and inferred mineral resource estimate for the Livengood deposit covers an area of approximately 2.6 square kilometres and is based on 189 drill holes which have an average length of 252 metres and 11 trenches with an average length of 38 metres. Approximately one half of the total estimated area (1.6 square kilometres) contains 177 of the drillholes and, in this area, the geology has been modeled to represent the volumes of the different stratigraphic units on the property. Outside of the modeled area no identifiable stratigraphy has been recognized and, consequently, it has been modeled as a homogeneous mass. Statistically, each of the geological volumes was treated independently with individual kriging parameters developed.
The resource model for the deposit was developed using Multiple Indicator Kriging techniques. Indicator variogram modeling was done on 10 metre composites. The resource model and the variograms were heavily constrained by the lithological model developed by the Company. Statistical analysis showed this to be a reasonable and prudent approach to modeling. Spatial statistics indicate that the mineralization shows very reasonable continuity within the range of anticipated operational cutoffs. Bulk density was estimated on the basis of individual density measurements made on core samples and reverse circulation drill chips from each stratigraphic unit. In total, 95 measurements were used. An average density of 2.72 was used for the entire modeled volume, as the variability between units was small. The resource model, with blocks 15 x 15 by 10 metres, was estimated using nine indicator thresholds. A change-of-support correction was imposed on the model assuming 5 x 5 x 10 metre selectable mining units.
The geology of the holes around the margins of the currently drilled area indicates that the favourable host stratigraphy and alteration remain open laterally and at depth, thus indicating that the system could potentially be much larger than the current estimate.
A detailed description of the updated resource estimate and other pertinent geological information related to the Livengood project will be included in a NI 43-101 compliant preliminary economic assessment technical report being prepared for the Company by Mineral Resource Services Inc., Barnes Engineering Services, Inc. and Pennstrom Consulting Inc., which will be filed on SEDAR within 45 days of this news release.
Qualified Person and Quality Control/Quality Assurance
The work program at Livengood was designed and is supervised by Dr. Russell Myers, Vice President of Exploration, and Chris Puchner, Chief Geologist (CPG 07048), for ITH who are responsible for all aspects of the work, including the quality control/quality assurance program. On-site personnel at the project log and track all samples prior to sealing and shipping to ALS Chemex for assay. ALS Chemex's quality system complies with the requirements for the International Standards ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 17025: 1999. Analytical accuracy and precision are monitored by the analysis of reagent blanks, reference material and replicate samples. Quality control is further assured by the use of international and in-house standards. Finally, representative blind duplicate samples are forwarded to ALS Chemex and an ISO compliant third party laboratory for additional quality control.
Tracy Edward Barnes, P.E. of Barnes Engineering Services, Inc., a consulting mining engineer, is a Professional Engineer in the State of Colorado, US (No. 33381) and as such is acting as the Qualified Person, as defined in NI 43-101, for the resource modeling for the Livengood deposit. Mr. Barnes has a BS degree in Mining Engineering and more than 34 years of relevant mining engineering experience in operating, corporate and consulting environments. Mr. Barnes is also a SME Founding Registered Member. Both Mr. Barnes and Barnes Engineering Services, Inc. are independent of the Company under NI 43-101.
About International Tower Hill Mines Ltd.
International Tower Hill Mines Ltd. is a resource exploration company, focused in Alaska and Nevada, which controls a number of exploration projects representing a spectrum of early stage to the advanced multimillion ounce gold discovery at Livengood. ITH is committed to building shareholder value through new discoveries while maintaining a majority interest in its key holdings, thereby giving its shareholders the maximum value for their investment.
On behalf of
INTERNATIONAL TOWER HILL MINES LTD.
(signed) Jeffrey A. Pontius
Jeffrey A. Pontius,
President and Chief Executive Officer
Quentin Mai, Vice-President - Corporate Communications
Phone: 1-888-770-7488 (toll free) or (604)683-6332 / Fax: (604) 408-7499
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release, which has been prepared by management.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 27E of the Exchange Act. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, included herein including, without limitation, statements regarding the anticipated content, commencement and cost of exploration programs, anticipated exploration program results, the discovery and delineation of mineral deposits/resources/reserves, the anticipated completion of a preliminary economic assessment for the Livengood deposit, the potential for the expansion of the estimated resources at Livengood, business and financing plans and business trends, are forward-looking statements. Information concerning mineral resource estimates also may be deemed to be forward-looking statements in that it reflects a prediction of the mineralization that would be encountered if a mineral deposit were developed and mined. Although the Company believes that such statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as: believe, expect, anticipate, intend, estimate, postulate and similar expressions, or are those, which, by their nature, refer to future events. The Company cautions investors that any forward-looking statements by the Company are not guarantees of future results or performance, and that actual results may differ materially from those in forward looking statements as a result of various factors, including, but not limited to, variations in the nature, quality and quantity of any mineral deposits that may be located, the Company's inability to obtain any necessary permits, consents or authorizations required for its activities, the Company's inability to produce minerals from its properties successfully or profitably, to continue its projected growth, to raise the necessary capital or to be fully able to implement its business strategies, and other risks and uncertainties disclosed in the Company's Annual Information Form filed with certain securities commissions in Canada and the Company's annual report on Form 20-F filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), and other information released by the Company and filed with the appropriate regulatory agencies. All of the Company's Canadian public disclosure filings may be accessed via www.sedar.com and its United States public disclosure filings may be accessed via www.sec.gov, and readers are urged to review these materials, including the technical reports filed with respect to the Company's mineral properties.
Cautionary Note Regarding References to Resources and Reserves
National Instrument 43 101 - Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects ("NI 43 101") is a rule developed by the Canadian Securities Administrators which establishes standards for all public disclosure an issuer makes of scientific and technical information concerning mineral projects. Unless otherwise indicated, all reserve and resource estimates contained in or incorporated by reference in this press release have been prepared in accordance with NI 43 101 and the guidelines set out in the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (the "CIM") Standards on Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserves, adopted by the CIM Council on November 14, 2004 (the "CIM Standards") as they may be amended from time to time by the CIM.
United States shareholders are cautioned that the requirements and terminology of NI 43-101 and the CIM Standards differ significantly from the requirements and terminology of the SEC set forth Industry Guide 7. Accordingly, the Company's disclosures regarding mineralization may not be comparable to similar information disclosed by companies subject to the SEC's Industry Guide 7. Without limiting the foregoing, while the terms "mineral resources", "inferred mineral resources" and "indicated mineral resources" are recognized and required by NI 43-101 and the CIM Standards, they are not recognized by the SEC and are not permitted to be used in documents filed with the SEC by companies subject to Industry Guide 7. Mineral resources which are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability, and United States shareholders are cautioned not to assume that all or any part of a mineral resource will ever be converted into reserves. Further, inferred resources have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence and as to whether they can be mined legally or economically. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of the inferred resources will ever be upgraded to a higher resource category. In addition, the NI 43-101 and CIM Standards definition of a "reserve" differs from the definition adopted by the SEC in Industry Guide 7. In the United States, a mineral reserve is defined as a part of a mineral deposit which could be economically and legally extracted or produced at the time the mineral reserve determination is made.
Cautionary Note Regarding Similar Mineral Property References
This press release contains information with respect to adjacent or similar mineral properties in respect of which the Company has no interest or rights to explore or mine. The Company advises US investors that the US Securities and Exchange Commission's mining guidelines strictly prohibit information of this type in documents filed with the SEC. Readers are cautioned that the Company has no interest in or right to acquire any interest in any such properties, and that mineral deposits on adjacent or similar properties are not indicative of mineral deposits on the Company's properties.
This press release is not, and is not to be construed in any way as, an offer to buy or sell securities in the United States.