Fort William First Nation ready to be the host community of a lithium processing plant – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – March 31, 2021)

Avalon Advanced Material signs letter of intent with northwestern Ontario community on brownfield site search

A potential developer of a lithium chemical plant in northwestern Ontario has inked an agreement with Fort William First Nation (FWFN), next to Thunder Bay, to identify a suitable refinery site on reserve land.

Toronto’s Avalon Advanced Materials has signed a letter of intent with the community to collaborate on the possible construction of a lithium processing plant on Fort William’s spacious heavy industrial lands.

The reserve has more than 1,100 acres of brownfield property available, formerly known as the Grand Trunk Pacific Lands, that is being marketed as a development-ready industrial business park.

Last November, Avalon announced it was teaming up with Rock Tech Lithium to form a joint venture to study the potential of building a lithium chemical plant in Thunder Bay. The Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission was helping them scope out a suitable site.

The proposed facility would accept lithium mineral concentrates from Avalon’s Separation Rapids deposit, north of Kenora, and Rock Tech’s Georgia Lake deposit, south of the town of Beardmore, to produce lithium hydroxide and materials used in making lithium-ion batteries. It’s believed that would be the first plant of its type in North America.

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