Opinion: Mining activity threatens ecosystem at Wolf Lake – by Naomi Grant, Franco Mariotti and Viki Mather (Sudbury Star – July 6, 2022)



Naomi Grant, Franco Mariotti, and Viki Mather are steering committee members with the Wolf Lake Coalition.

Wolf Lake is the largest remaining old-growth red pine forest in North America. This globally significant and endangered ecosystem is a recreational paradise known around the world. It has been recognized as a fish sanctuary, a candidate for park status, and as a priority natural area for protection.

It is also the site of active mining leases and claims. Wolf Lake’s Forest Reserve status protects it from logging but allows mining activity, with the intention for the lands to be added to the provincial park or conservation reserve when the mining claim or lease expires through normal processes.

The past two winters have seen early mining exploration activity ramp up at Wolf Lake. More is planned. The Wolf Lake Coalition has received many queries about what is happening at Wolf Lake. As people get out on the land and water to canoe and camp, here is our update.

Observed impacts – spring of 2021 and 2022

During mining exploration, very large trees have been knocked down or cut down for drilling, line cutting, and access trails.

Drill sites smell of oil. Soil, rocks and pine cones appear to be saturated with an oily substance, sometimes very close to water, raising concerns for both soil and water quality. Two of these drill sites are on popular campsites.

For the rest of this column: https://www.thesudburystar.com/opinion/mining-activity-threatens-ecosystem-at-wolf-lake