Sudbury lithium mine developer looks for infrastructure funding to reach the EV market – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – June 1, 2023)

Frontier Lithium’s PAK Project has a 24 years of mining life, but it needs government to fund the path forward

Tucked up in a remote corner of northwestern Ontario, Frontier Lithium and president-CEO Trevor Walker are sitting on one of the largest, highest grade and mine-ready lithium projects in North America.

The Sudbury-based exploration company has two massive spodumene-bearing lithium deposits about 175 kilometres north of Red Lake, near the Manitoba border. And there’s tons of potential to develop it into a district scale-sized operation.

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Revised plan for mining Mary River iron – by Rose Ragsdale (North of 60 Mining News – June 2, 2023)

Six months after the Canadian government rejected a plan to double approved output from the Mary River iron mine on Nunavut’s Baffin Island, the mine’s operator, Baffinland Iron Mines Corp., is working to get the green light to move ahead with a different proposal.

The new plan, which the company calls a “Sustaining Operations Proposal,” surfaced in December, about a month after federal Northern Affairs Minister Daniel Vandal rejected the earlier plan Nov. 16 to expand operations and double approved shipping output from the mine to 12 million metric tons of iron ore annually.

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A ‘Dirty’ Job That Few Want: Mining Companies Struggle to Hire for the Energy Transition – by Yusuf Khan (Wall Street Journal – June 1, 2023)

A skills shortage is threatening to slow the shift to a green economy, as more young people are turning their noses up at mining jobs

Lily Dickson was hurrying across the University of Leeds campus when a student campaigner handed her a flier that called for a ban on campus recruiting by mining and oil-and-gas companies. The 24-year old doctoral student in geology was taken aback. She had recently returned from a trip to Finland, having worked with Vancouver-based miner Mawson Gold, exploring new places to mine cobalt in Europe.

The ban wasn’t an empty threat or an isolated incident. Last year, four U.K. universities—but not Leeds—banned mining firms from recruiting on campus and attending careers fairs, part of a broader trend of college graduates and young workers turning their backs on extractive industries that they fear harm the planet.

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How Lack of Copper Could Slow the Energy Transition – by James Attwood (Washington Post/Bloomberg – June 1, 2023)

Avoiding a climate catastrophe is often portrayed as a question of political will. Yet the push to reduce carbon emissions is also a daunting technical challenge. Retooling power and transportation systems to run on renewable energy will require far more copper than the companies able to produce it are currently equipped to deliver.

The question is whether a traditionally cautious mining industry will embrace the scale of investment needed to rewire the world. Failure would throw the transition to cleaner power sources off course.

1. Why is copper so important?

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Minnesota plans rewrite of rules for copper-nickel mining near popular wilderness (Associated Press – June 1, 2023)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota regulators have concluded that state rules governing where copper-nickel mines can be built are insufficient to protect the pristine Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from noise and light pollution, creating another potential obstacle to the proposed Twin Metals mine in northeastern Minnesota.

But the Department of Natural Resources declined as part of that decision Wednesday to declare a watershed that flows into the Boundary Waters off-limits to copper-nickel mining altogether, which had been a goal of the environmental group that challenged the regulations, Minnesota Public Radio reported.

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Russian mercenaries exploit a war-torn African nation as they lead Putin’s fight in Ukraine – by Gabe Joselow (NBC News – June 1, 2023)

“I asked everyone for help. … Was I supposed to refuse the help from those who wanted to help us?” Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadéra tells NBC News.

BANGUI, Central African Republic — President Faustin-Archange Touadéra says he called in the Russians because he was stuck. It was 2016, soon after his election, and rebels had overrun swaths of the resource-rich country, which is among the world’s poorest nations. Former colonial power France announced it would withdraw its soldiers, the backbone of a United Nations force aimed at quelling the country’s civil war.

And Touadéra’s army and militia didn’t have enough weapons to defeat fighters threatening the capital, Bangui, because the Central African Republic was under a U.N. arms embargo put in place after a previous rebel takeover. So the former mathematics professor turned to Moscow.

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China’s Monopoly over Critical Minerals – by Katherine Wells (Georgetown Security Studies Review – June 1, 2023)

As part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has taken to investing in critical mineral mines globally. One of these investment hotspots is the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In 2020, the DRC was the world’s largest cobalt miner, producing 41 of all cobalt resources.

Although not the largest producer of copper – Chile produces 27 percent of the global copper production – the DRC boasts the highest-quality copper reserves in the world, with mines estimated to contain copper with grades above 3 percent, 2.4 percent higher than the average supply globally. The mining industry is central to the DRC’s economy, making up over 90 percent of its exports.

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Future of battery electric vehicles the focus at Sudbury conference – by Amanda Hicks (CTV News Northern Ontario – June 1, 2023)

The second annual battery electric vehicle (BEV) conference is under way at Cambrian College in Sudbury. Day 1 of the two-day Mines to Mobility Conference began Wednesday, drawing out leaders in mining, automotive and supply.

Sudbury Mayor Paul Lefebvre said the conference is huge for the city. “It not only showcases what we do in Sudbury, but all the resources we have here. But having the world come here and have that discussion about battery electric vehicles and the future of it,” Lefebvre said. Devin Arthur, president of the EV Society of Greater Sudbury, said some of the challenges in the EV industry is a lack of supply.

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Massive rare earth discoveries could mean a new mining rush in the Mountain West – by Will Walkey (Jackson Hole Community Radio/Wyoming Public Media – June 1, 2023)

Down a bumpy dirt road next to a small meandering creek in southeast Wyoming lies the site of a potentially massive rare earth mineral mine. These elements are used in many emerging technologies, including cell phones and solar panels, and they’re a growing part of the future of extractive industry in the Mountain West.

But mining them here and in other places around the region is sure to have big impacts on nearby communities and the environment. This site in the Laramie Mountains is remote. Just a couple of ranches are visible below, and the desolate hillsides contain cacti, animal droppings, shrubs and rocks. A few wooden stakes remain from previous surveys of the land.

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North to reap the rewards of BEVs, minister tells delegates – by Len Gillis ( – June 1, 2023)

Ontario Mines Minister George Pirie tells delegates to Sudbury battery electric vehicle conference that Northern Ontario’s mining industry is going to power the future in a sustainable and clean energy fashion

Just as the discovery of oil in Texas fuelled the U.S. economy for a century and a half, so will the critical minerals of Northern Ontario fuel the electric vehicle economy of this province in the years to come.

That was part of the message Wednesday when Ontario Mines Minister George Pirie spoke to the second annual BEV-In-Depth conference being held to promote the battery electric vehicle industry in Sudbury and the rest of Ontario. Pirie’s speech was nothing short of a rally-the-team pep talk for Northern Ontario mining.

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Federal court allows international mining giant to oppose tribes in Oak Flat lawsuit – by Debra Utacia Krol (Arizona Republic – May 31, 2023)

The U.S. District Court in Arizona granted mining giant Resolution Copper permission on Monday to join the U.S. government as a defendant in a lawsuit brought by grassroots group Apache Stronghold.

The Native organization has been fighting to prevent Resolution from building a huge copper mining operation that would obliterate Oak Flat, one of the Apaches peoples’ most sacred sites. Oak Flat, or Chi’chil Biłdagoteel, “the place where the Emory oak grows,” is also culturally important to other Southwestern tribes, and is one of Arizona’s remaining riparian zones and a popular site for recreational users.

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Harry Oppenheimer biography shows the South African mining magnate’s hand in economic policies – by Roger Southall (The Conversation – June 1, 2023)

In Harry Oppenheimer: Diamonds, Gold and Dynasty, his outstanding biography of the South African mining magnate who died in 2000, Michael Cardo shows that there is still mileage to be made in the study of dead white males who played a role in the making of South Africa. Based on a remarkable depth of research, it is written in an elegant style which makes for a delightfully easy read.

It is rendered the more impressive by the author’s deep conversance with the debates over the relationships between mining capital, Afrikaner nationalism and apartheid. Cardo is an opposition MP.

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Miners lining up to take legal action against Mexico’s reforms (BN – June 2, 2023)

At least 10 mining companies are presenting or preparing to file injunctions against reforms to four Mexican laws that impact mining and took effect at the beginning of May, a legal expert with knowledge of the matter told BNamericas. The deadline to present the measures expires next week, according to the lawyer, who asked not to be identified.

“There are many companies that are already preparing their injunction requests. Initially, the injunctions are against those provisions that are called self-enforcing, which by the mere entry into force of the law are already applicable and, therefore, represent a grievance,” the legal expert said in an interview.

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Site visit: How big can MPD get? Kodiak Copper drills to expand mineral footprint – by Henry Lazenby (Northern Miner – May 31, 2023)

When mineral mastermind Chris Taylor gets behind a grassroots exploration project it behooves investors to sit up and pay attention – he did after all sell an Ontario pre-resource stage gold project for $1.8 billion in hard cash and is looking to repeat that success with brainchild Kodiak Copper (TSXV: KDK; US-OTCQB: KDKCF).

Kodiak’s most advanced asset is its MPD copper-gold porphyry project in the Quesnel Trough in south-central British Columbia – a multi-centered porphyry system that is slowly giving up its secrets. The explorer’s share price gathered momentum since 2020 after discovering the Gate Zone, which has high-grade mineralization within a wide mineralized envelope.

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The World Has a New No. 2 Copper Supplier – by Marcelo Rochabrun and Michael J. Kavanagh (Bloomberg News – June 1, 2023)

(Bloomberg) — The Democratic Republic of Congo displaced Peru as the second-biggest copper exporter last year, official data from the two countries show, in a changing of the guard for the mining industry.

While the numbers used in the chart below refer to shipments rather than production, the shift in positions underscores a couple of important trends. Firstly, an up-tick in social unrest and political uncertainties are constraining investment in South America, as more money flows into Africa’s rich ore-bodies.

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