‘Mining days’ on Parliament Hill gave Sault Ste. Marie MP Terry Sheehan another chance to meet with Noront Resource executives. Sheehan’s Twitter posts show he met with president Allan Coutts in Ottawa to get an update on what the mining company with the largest stake in the Ring of Fire is doing.
“We do meet or keep in touch regularly, but certainly it was another opportunity for me to push Sault Ste. Marie’s advantages for a ferrochrome facility,” Sheehan said in a telephone interview.
Noront Resources is continuing to conduct its due diligence into the two final cities wanting to host its proposed ferrochrome facility – Sault Ste. Marie and Timmins. “I don’t expect any announcement for a bit,” Sheehan said. “But I continued to put forward our position that we have advantages like the port for transportation and strong electrical hookups because it’s already an industrial site and our skilled workforce and training facilities.”
Sheehan said Noront Resources is pleased that Algoma is very close to emerging from bankruptcy protection, a move that will allow the purchasers of the company to negotiate a long-term lease agreement with Noront Resources if Sault Ste. Marie is the chosen site. “This is all about relationship building. We keep in contact and they update me on things from their end. I stress that I want to work with them, open doors for them and help them walk through and talk or highlight their business with others,” Sheehan said.
Even if Sault Ste. Marie is selected as the location for Noront Resources ferrochrome facility, the plant would not be built for a number of years. An extensive Environmental Assessment process to meet criteria from both the provincial and federal governments must be completed first to pave the way for certificates of approval to be issued. It’s anticipated that could take several years to complete.
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