Noront Resources to make decision on Ring of Fire smelter by end of year – by Angela Gemmill (CBC News Sudbury – August 21, 2017)

Mining company to work on smelter development while province, First Nations create road infrastructure

Monday’s long-awaited news that the provincial government will help build roads to the Ring of Fire chromite deposit is music to the ears of junior miner Noront Resources Limited.

The provincial government says it’s working with three remote northwestern Ontario First Nations to develop year-round road access that will link the communities to Ontario’s highway system. Noront has a major land position in the Ring of Fire. CEO Alan Coutts said the announcement from Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne was welcome.

“It’s a very important breakthrough. This is exactly what was needed to de-bottleneck the Ring of Fire development,” Coutts said. While in Thunder Bay, Wynne told the media the environmental assessment will begin immediately and should take much of 2018 to complete. Construction on the roads should start in 2019.

Noront has already conducted its own environmental baselines and potential route corridors. It’s prepared to share this information with the government and the First Nation communities involved, said Coutts. While the transportation corridor is being developed, Noront will be working on construction of its underground mine. That project will cost $650-700 million to build, said Coutts.

It will be a 350-person camp, to support a major mining operation. The ore produced will be transported down the new roads to a ferrochrome treatment plant.

Noront is looking at specific sites for that facility, which has been proposed for one of four northern Ontario communities. The company has been speaking with representatives from Sudbury, Timmins, Sault Ste Marie and Thunder Bay.

For the rest of this article: