Biden set to block Ambler mining road in Alaska wilderness – by Adam Federman ( – April 16, 2024)

The move to preserve the preserve the pristine wilderness has been sought by Alaskan tribes, but would keep the critical minerals in the region from being mined.

The Biden administration is preparing to reject a controversial road-building project needed to mine major copper and zinc deposits in the remote Alaska wilderness, a move sought by native tribes, but one that would keep critical minerals essential for the U.S. clean energy transition out of reach.

In a final environmental analysis due out later this week, the Interior Department is expected to issue a recommendation that would effectively kill the Ambler Road project in its current form, according to two people with knowledge on the decision who were granted anonymity because it was not yet public. A document explaining the administration’s stance is due 90 days after publication of the environmental impact statement.

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Panama election unlikely to shift outlook for First Quantum’s copper mine – by Valentine Hilaire and Elida Moreno (Reuters – April 18, 2024)

April 18 (Reuters) – Prospects are poor for First Quantum Minerals to recover its canceled concession for a lucrative copper mine after presidential elections in May, a Reuters review of the campaigns’ proposals and interviews with protest leaders show.

Protests against First Quantum’s concession demanding greater environmental guarantees and transparency in negotiations made authorities not only annul its contract to operate one of the world’s largest and newest copper mines but ban all new metal mining permits last year.

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Rio Tinto to favour development over acquisition of copper mines — exec – by Editor ( – April 17, 2024)

Rio Tinto (ASX, LON, NYSE: RIO) will prioritize developing new copper mines over acquiring new ones to achieve its goal of producing one million tonnes of the metal annually within the next five years, copper boss Bold Baatar has said.

Speaking at the CRU World Copper Conference in Chile, the executive noted that to boost production from the roughly 700,000 tonnes of copper it currently churns out, Rio is looking mainly at organic growth.

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Codelco Eyes Partnerships to Help Boost Ailing Copper Production – by James Attwood and Jack Farchy (Bloomberg News – April 15, 2024)

(Bloomberg) — Codelco is exploring more partnerships with the private sector as Chile’s state copper behemoth looks to recover from a production slump and surging debt.

Chairman Maximo Pacheco expects “some conclusions” this year from teams negotiating an operational tie-up between its Andina mine and Anglo American Plc’s adjoining Los Bronces, he said Monday in an interview. Codelco already has an indirect stake in Los Bronces, shares ownership of the El Abra mine with Freeport-McMoRan Inc. and is negotiating with would-be lithium partners.

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How a US$10 billion mine became a cautionary tale for the energy transition – by Jacob Lorinc (Bloomberg News – April 16, 2024)

When the group of mining executives arrived at Panama’s regal Palacio de las Garzas, they were ushered past the ornate, wood-paneled ceremonial rooms and straight to the private office of the president.

This was December 2016, before the upswell of anti-mining protests that would throw the country into chaos, and the team from First Quantum Minerals Ltd. were greeted as old friends. After all, they were building the country’s most important project since the Panama Canal had been opened a century earlier.

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Green Rush panel: Is there willingness to pay a premium for responsibly sourced minerals? ( – April 9, 2024)

(Kitco News) – Environmental, social, governance (ESG) initiatives are further delaying mining projects while critical metals are in high demand, creating tension within the mining industry, says Matt Watson, founder of Precious Metals Commodity Management LLC.

The other problem is that metals necessary for the green transition are difficult to process, namely nickel, cobalt and rare earths. On April 3, Watson recorded an episode of Green Rush with guests James Gavilan, principal of Gavilan Commodities, and Lyle Trytten, president of Trytten Consulting Services. The subject was ESG in the context of scaling responsibly mined minerals.

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In Ecuador, gov’t sees mining as the future. But communities are divided – by Michele Bertelli (Al – April 7, 2024)

Ecuador sees mining as a ‘crucial driver’ of the economy, providing jobs and incomes, but locals disagree.

Las Pampas, Ecuador – The alarm rang at 7am, summoning everyone in the main square. Protesters boarded three trucks, normally used to transport livestock. The convoy carried them close to the nearby town of Palo Quemado, home to the mining project of La Plata in northwestern Ecuador, 130km (81 miles) from the capital Quito.

Since last July, this quiet community has turned into an epicentre of anti-mining protests. Under the sight of military men stationed on the crest of the hill, roughly 100 demonstrators approached the road into town. But a whole riot squad blocked their way.

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It is time for a new look at Windy Craggy – by Bruce Downing and Rick Van Nieuwenhuyse (North of 60 Mining News – September 26, 2020)

N’tsi Tatay, more widely known as the Windy Craggy Project, is one of North America’s largest resources of cobalt with excellent copper, zinc, gold, and silver grades hosted in an Upper Triassic Besshi-style volcanogenic massive sulphide.

It is located in the northwestern corner of British Columbia within a regional scale volcano-sedimentary basin, termed Alta Basin, which is a mineralized belt that has the potential for future discoveries. Other known sulphide prospects occur within 15 kilometers (nine miles) of N’tsi Tatay.

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Copper Bulls Can See A Record Price Of $12,000/t – by Tim Treadgold (Forbes Magazine – April 3, 2024)

The copper bulls are off and running once again with confidence growing that the latest price breakout will not be another false alarm.

A squeeze on supply caused by production outages such as the closure of a big copper mine in Panama is combining with strong demand to lift the price back over the $9000 per pound mark with another 22% increase to a record $11,000/lb seen as likely.

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Michigan’s $50M support of copper mine project comes with caveat – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – April 3, 2024)

Highland Copper on the spot to raise financing for Upper Peninsula mine

The State of Michigan is prepared to give a Vancouver copper company a funding kickstart to support a proposed mine in western Upper Peninsula. The board of the Michigan Strategic Fund has approved a $50-million “performance-based grant” to Highland Copper Company. Final approval still needs to come from the state legislature.

The grant, which comes from a Strategic Site Readiness Program, is specifically intended for mine-related infrastructure development, meaning installing roads, communications and extending power to the site.

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First Quantum executives get pay increases despite company’s woes – by Niall McGee and David Milstead (Globe and Mail – March 29, 2024)

The senior executive team at Canadian copper miner First Quantum Minerals Ltd. got substantial compensation bumps and favourable performance reviews in a year the company was forced to shut down its biggest mine, and its stock lost more than half its value.

Late last year, Vancouver-based First Quantum shuttered the Cobre Panama mine after Panama’s Supreme Court declared its mining contract was unconstitutional. The giant copper mine in Panama accounted for about half of First Quantum’s revenue.

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Canada’s next big problem could be copper theft. Here’s why – by Jamie Casemore (National Post – March 26, 2024)

Bell Canada is sounding the alarm over copper theft especially in Ontario, New Brunswick and Quebec. Here’s what to know

A major Canadian telecommunications company is calling upon the government for enhanced security protocols to address the growing problem of copper theft.

Bell Canada recently announced that it had installed aerial alarms to fight against and protect communications infrastructure from being tampered with, as thieves, especially since 2022, have been breaking into telecommunications substations to steal copper cables.

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Barrick shuts down water supply after uranium found at copper mine in Zambia – by Geoffrey York (Globe and Mail – March 20, 2024)

Barrick Gold says it has found uranium in the drinking water of an open section of its Lumwana copper mine in Zambia, forcing it to halt the water supply and switch to other water sources for its workers in the section.

The Zambian mine has become increasingly important to Barrick’s future. The Toronto-based company has announced plans for a US$2-billion expansion at Lumwana to create one of the world’s biggest copper mines, with construction to begin late this year and production from the project expected by 2028.

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Alaska’s governor calls on Biden to update mine permit process – by Ernest Scheyder and Georgina McCartney (Finance Yahoo/Reuters – March 20, 2024)

HOUSTON, March 20 (Reuters) – Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy called on President Joe Biden on Wednesday to update and streamline the U.S. mine permitting process in order to boost domestic production of critical minerals and reduce dependence on foreign nations.

The push echoes calls from the mining industry for clarity on how permits can be obtained for mines that produce copper, lithium and other energy transition minerals. Executives have long complained the U.S. process can be complex, expensive and opaque due in part to a federal mining law enacted in 1872.

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Abitibi Metals drills 3.5% copper in Quebec – by Colin McClelland ( – February 29, 2024)

Abitibi Metals (CSE: AMQ) says its first two drill holes at the B26 polymetallic deposit in northern Quebec bode well to earn most of the project from the provincial government and develop an open-pit mine.

Drill hole 1274-24-293 intersected 22.7 metres grading 3.5% copper, 0.7 gram gold per tonne, and 6.6 grams silver from 120 metres depth including 10.6 metres at 5.4% copper, 1.3 grams gold and 9.6 grams silver, Abitibi reported on Thursday. Drill hole 1274-24-294 cut 34 metres at 3% copper, 1.5 grams gold and 6 grams silver from 135 metres depth, it said.

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