Environmental assessment process continues for mining project – by Northwest Bureau (Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal – December 10, 2011)

The Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal is the daily newspaper of Northwestern Ontario.

Noront Resources Ltd. is working on the environmental assessment process for its base-metal mining project in the Ring of Fire mining district.

The company released its draft terms of reference for the Eagle’s Nest Mine project last week and is seeking public input on its plans.

The draft terms of reference have been prepared by Noront in compliance with Ontario Ministry of the Environment requirements. The document is available for review by the public, and copies can be downloaded at www.norontresources.com, or www.eaglesnestmine.com.

The federal government’s environmental assessment process for the project is also moving along, and the draft environmental impact statement guidelines for the Eagle’s Nest Mine Project have also been released for public review.

A copy of those guidelines can be downloaded from CEAA’s website at www.ceaa.gc.ca, www.norontresources.com, or www.eaglesnestmine.com.

These two reports signal the beginning of the public engagement in the regulated processes for the federal and provincial government reviews of the project.

Noront has produced project reports and summary documents (including copies in Oji-Cree) to the general public and the local First Nation communities.

Noront CEO Wes Hanson said in a news release that “this is an important first step in the project development and permitting for the Eagle’s Nest Mine.

“We are committed to responsible development and we look forward to receiving comments from the public,” he said, adding that “we believe public comments are an important part of the process and will greatly assist us in the refinement of the project for the benefit of all stakeholders.”

Since 2009, the company has conducted environmental baseline studies around the mineral deposit, at infrastructure sites, and along the planned access corridor to the proposed mine. Noront has also been advancing the engineering of the mine and infrastructure, incorporating means to protect the environment and support sustainable development.

Noront Resources Ltd. is focused on developing the high-grade Eagle’s Nest nickel-copper- platinum-palladium deposit, the exploration and development of the Blackbird chromite discovery and regional exploration for additional mineral deposits in the area known as the Ring of Fire mining camp located in the James Bay Lowlands.