Northern Ontario cities await Noront smelter decision – by Gary Rinne ( – June 14, 2018)

THUNDER BAY — Officials in four northern Ontario centres including Thunder Bay are still waiting to hear Noront Resources’ decision on where it proposes to set up a ferrochrome processor. Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Timmins and Sault Ste. Marie all submitted bids to host the smelter for chromite mined in the Ring of Fire.

At the beginning of February, Noront said it had hired Hatch, a Mississauga-based engineering and consulting company, to help evaluate the bids.

In the same announcement, the company estimated that “the adjudication process will conclude in three to four months,” and said “a decision will be publicly announced at that time along with the criteria and rationale for site selection.”

Thunder Bay submitted a joint bid with Fort William First Nation, with city officials touting the potential for the processor to create as many as 500 direct jobs. Chromite would be trucked to the facility from the Aroland and Nakina area.

Thunder Bay City Manager Norm Gale said Wednesday that the city has “no information that the public or media doesn’t have” regarding the status of Noront’s decision on the smelter location.

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