Mining claims have jumped 30% in northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire area since 2022 – by Sarah Law (CBC News Thunder Bay – December 11, 2023)

More than 31,000 mining claims are now registered in the area, data shows

Mining claims staked in northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire area have risen by 30 per cent since last year, according to online mining data from the provincial government. The crescent-shaped mineral deposit in the James Bay lowlands has been eyed as a critical source for Ontario’s burgeoning electric vehicle battery industry for years.

But surrounding First Nations say there hasn’t been proper consultation about mining projects on their territories. A number of rallies have been held at Queen’s Park in Toronto this year by members of the First Nations Land Defence Alliance, calling out the province’s free-entry mining system and demanding a meeting with Premier Doug Ford.

“Although he says he’s very accessible to First Nations, he’s not accessible to me,” said Chief Chris Moonias of Neskantaga First Nation. This week, non-profit conservation group the Wildlands League put out a statement about the sudden surge of mining claims around the Ring of Fire based on data from Geology Ontario.

Their numbers show there are more than 31,000 registered claims covering more than 626,000 hectares, compared to more than 24,000 claims last year. The area covers the equivalent of nearly 10 times the size of the City of Toronto, or double the Greater Sudbury area, the group says.

For the rest of this article: