Sudbury’s mine waste worth billions; new project to find ways of extracting valuable minerals – by Staff (Sudbury Star – March 8, 2023)

Vale, province to pay for new industrial research chair program in biomining and bioremediation to be based in Sudbury

Mine waste in the Sudbury area may be worth billions and it’s Nadia Mykytczuk’s job to find ways using bacteria to extract the valuable nickel, copper and other critical minerals out of them.

Her job got a lot easier Wednesday when Vale Energy Transition Metals and the provincial government announced money to support a new industrial research chair program in biomining and bioremediation that she will lead in Sudbury. Vale Energy committed $875,000 over five years to the Mining Innovation, Rehabilitation, and Applied Research Corporation (MIRARCO) at Laurentian University.

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Clean and green mining in Sudbury takes a step forward – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – March 7, 2023)

Vale and Queen’s Park offer up $1.6 million to tackle mining waste and advance bio-mining innovation

A new and environmentally benign form of Sudbury’s mining industry just took a great leap forward with a more than $1.6 million contribution from international nickel miner Vale and the Ontario government.

Mining Innovation, Rehabilitation, and Applied Research Corporation (MIRARCO) at Laurentian University and its research leader Dr. Nadia Mykytczuk are the recipients of this largess that will be earmarked for the organization’s bio-mining and remediation efforts in tackling mine waste.

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The role of biotechnology in mining and minerals – by Madiha Khan and Steve Gravel (Canadian Mining Journal – January 11, 2023)

As the global demand for metals continues to grow year over year, the need for intensive mining is showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, some reports project that production of battery metals is expected to increase by 500% by 2050. This unprecedented demand is also being met by a two-fold supply problem; the slow speed of new mining operations coming on-line and the general problem of world-wide low ore grades that has surfaced over the last few decades.

The global market needs to grapple with these problems and producers need to find ways to extract metals quickly and cheaply while still adhering to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) responsibilities which have become critical guiding principles of late. One burgeoning area of technology that is potentially valuable in solving some of these issues is biotechnology.

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The race to mine mining waste – by John Lorinc (Corporate Knights – January 9, 2023)

Could metal-eating bacteria that break down mining waste be key to sustainable battery minerals?

For generations, the topography of Sudbury, Ontario, has been brutally defined by towering slag heaps and vast orange-hued tailings ponds – the physical legacy of almost 140 years of nickel mining and smelting by resource giants like Inco and Falconbridge.

By 1910, in fact, Sudbury’s mines were supplying 80% of the world’s nickel. But by the late 20th century, the industrial fallout – corrosive air pollution, acid rain and a legacy of seemingly intractable contamination – revealed the extraordinary environmental cost of those resource riches.

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NOBA 2022: Nadia Mykytczuk is the Innovation Award winner – by Casey Stranges (Northern Ontario Business- January 3, 2023)

MIRARCO chief’s research into biowaste may be game-changer in race to secure EV battery infrastructure

According to researcher Nadia Mykytczuk, Sudbury is ready to play a leading part in the global story about electric vehicles (EV).

As auto manufacturers lock up supply chains, and countries position themselves as viable trading partners, the Nickel City has the resources and necessary tools to transition into a hub for EV technology.

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The Drift: Sudbury mining camp remains active with explorers – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – December 14, 2022)

New sources of nickel and platinum keep the drills turning this winter

Nickel and base metals continue to drive exploration in the Sudbury mining camp with a handful of junior miners preparing for winter drill programs.

Magna Mining, the redevelopers of a decommissioned INCO property near Whitefish, reported some high-grade nickel hits this week from its first drilling program at the former Crean Hill Mine. The Sudbury junior miner acquired the shuttered underground mine last month and launched a maiden 2,000-metre program this fall.

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Ottawa orders Chinese divestment in three Canadian critical minerals companies – by Niall McGee and Steven Chase (Globe and Mail – November 3, 2022)

Ottawa is ordering Chinese state-owned companies to immediately divest their interests in three Canadian critical minerals companies, after the federal government faced an avalanche of criticism earlier in the year for allowing too much investment from the Asian superpower into the domestic mining sector.

The government’s order marks the second time in a week it has taken a more aggressive stand against China, after allowing it to acquire a Canadian critical minerals company earlier this year amid little scrutiny.

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Opinion: Laurentian must turn its legacy into a new vision for the future – by Nadia Mykytczuk (Sudbury Star – August 30, 2022)

Among other steps, LU should focus on being ‘Canada’s mining university’

As we get closer to the vote on Sept. 14 that will ultimately decide the fate of Laurentian University following a grueling, agonizing and, at times, nasty CCAA process, I find myself torn between our collective struggle to find closure, the empathy I feel for those whose lives were turned upside down, and mourning what we have lost in our Laurentian and Sudbury community.

As one of the terminated faculty, I have lived the pain of losing my job, my hard-earned academic career, and tenure. Even more difficult has been seeing many of my colleagues and their families leave our wonderful community.

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1911 Gold begins tailings reprocessing at True North complex in Manitoba – by Jackson Chen (Canadian Mining Journal – June 23, 2022)

1911 Gold (TSXV: AUMB; OTC: AUMBF) has begun tailings reprocessing operations at the True North complex at Bissett, Man., where it expects to process between 170,000 and 190,000 tonnes of historical tailings this year to recover approximately 3,500 to 4,000 oz. of gold.

Early in 2022, the company completed a sampling program to characterize the grade, thickness, grain-size and moisture content of the tailings in the targeted resource blocks to quantify the expected gold recovery.

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Toronto company looks to extract billions in value from Sudbury mine waste (CBC News Sudbury – June 7, 2022)

BacTec estimates there is $27 billion worth of nickel in Greater Sudbury’s mine waste

A Toronto-based environmental technology company is working on a pilot project in Sudbury to separate valuable minerals from mine waste with bacteria.

BacTech Environmental Corporation plans to have its pilot plant in Sudbury operational by July, and will use a process called bioleaching to extract minerals like nickel and cobalt from mine tailings. Tailings are the waste material that’s left over after minerals are extracted from a mine.

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The Drift: Sudbury has the solution for Canada’s mine waste problems – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – May 31, 2022)

Mining innovation CEO proposes $17.3-million biotechnology centre to advance environmentally sustainable mining

One of the mining industry’s biggest financial and environmental liabilities can be turned into a huge resource opportunity, said Sudbury environmental microbiologist Nadia Mykytczuk.

Canada’s mining sector generates more than 650 million tonnes of tailings every year from its 200 operations and spends over $10 billion for the ongoing treatment of this waste, not to mention about 10,000 abandoned mines that’s managed by government.

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Tapping mineral wealth in mining waste could offset damage from new green economy mines – by Anita Parbhakar-Fox, Kamini Bhowany, Kristy Guerin, Laura Jackson and Partha Narayan Mishra (The Conversation – May 30, 2022)

To go green, the world will need vast quantities of critical minerals such as manganese, lithium, cobalt and rare earth elements. But to some environmentalists, mining to save the planet is a hard pill to swallow if it leads to damage to pristine areas.

The good news is that in many cases, the mining for these minerals has already been done. After Australia’s major miners dig up iron ore, billions of tonnes of earth and rock are left over. Hidden in these rock piles and tailing dams are minerals vital to high tech industries of today and tomorrow.

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Sudbury’s tailings ponds could hold key to easing EV battery shortage, researcher says (CBC News Sudbury – May 29, 2022)

Metal-eating bacteria could help extract $7B-$10B worth of minerals at Copper Cliff

The key to supplying the automotive industry with enough electric vehicle batteries may rest in a toxic eyesore: Sudbury’s vast tailings ponds.

Tailings are the waste material left over from ore extraction processes — often mixed with water and stored in ponds. But for several years, the potential for leaks of toxic substances into the surrounding environment has raised concerns about these tailings and questions about what, if anything, can be done with them.

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The Drift: Could Sudbury be a global leader in ‘green’ mining? – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – May 25, 2022)

Toronto’s Bactech Environmental and Sudbury’s MIRARCO want to mine nickel, cobalt and iron the natural way

Sudbury may be on the cusp of an innovative new phase in its 40-year regreening effort. What an army of volunteer tree planters once accomplished to reforest a barren landscape, blackened by a century of nickel roasting and smelting, now a swarm of microscopic bugs could provide in an environmentally friendly solution to clean up a massive amount of mined waste rock while recovering valuable minerals in the process.

BacTech Environmental Corp., a Toronto green technology company, is pulling a proven technology out of mothballs to relaunch it in Sudbury to “liberate” millions of dollars worth of battery-grade metals out of mine tailings through a proprietary bioleaching process.

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[Partner Content] Tech update: A tiny solution that could lighten the impact of mining; a new platform that encourages the hiring of Black professionals; and other news – by Janey Llewellin (Toronto Star – February 10, 2022)

As the production of electric vehicles, solar panels and wind turbines ramps up, so too does the demand for “green” minerals. (In fact, the World Bank predicts that production of such minerals as lithium, cobalt and graphite will increase by nearly 500 per cent by 2050.) Yet traditional means of extraction often exacts a heavy toll on the environment. To lighten the impact, some companies are turning to a tiny solution: microbes found underground.

A new initiative with Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster is looking to identify helpful microbes that can replace the use of chemicals in mining and site remediation. The project aims to build a repository of microbes and geochemical data by extracting the DNA from more than 15,000 mining sites.

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