Archive | International Media Resource Articles

Mining project in doubt after Greenland opposition wins elections (Yahoo Finance – April 7, 2021)

https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/

An environmentalist party has won snap elections in Greenland, throwing into doubt a controversial project to mine one of the world’s biggest deposits of rare earth metals.

Taking more than a third of the vote, the left-wing opposition Inuit Ataqatigiit party (IA) unseated the social democratic Siumut, which has governed Greenland for decades.

“Thank you to those who trusted us to work with the people in the centre for the next four years,” IA leader Mute Egede said after the results were announced. Continue Reading →

‘Imminent’ Collapse of Wastewater Reservoir in Florida Forces Evacuations – by Bryan Pietsch and Marie Fazio (New York Times – April 3, 2021)

https://www.nytimes.com/

A reservoir in Florida that holds nearly 400 million gallons of wastewater from a former phosphate mine was leaking on Saturday, prompting hundreds of evacuations, the authorities said.

Crews were “doing their best to control the outflow” of contaminated water into a creek at Piney Point in Florida, the site of a former phosphate mine that is south of Tampa, said Vanessa Baugh, the chairwoman of the Manatee County Commission.

The spillage was an “imminent hazard” that posed “an immediate and substantial danger to human health, safety, welfare and the environment,” said Gov. Ron DeSantis, who issued an executive order declaring a state of emergency. Continue Reading →

Chinese Firms Position For An Energy Transition Copper Supercycle – by Jacob Koelsch, Michelle Michot Foss, Gabriel Collins, and Steven Lewis (Forbes Magazine – April 5, 2021)

https://www.forbes.com/

If China’s dominance of rare earth element supplies is the global energy transition’s “elephant in the room”, then copper is the 800-pound gorilla. China’s push for outbound investment, with attendant strategic nuances, are a hallmark of emerging concerns about raw materials supply chains.

Chinese firms recognize copper’s value from at least four perspectives. First, relative to internal industrial demand, China’s domestic production is inadequate.

Second, as Chinese outbound investment has evolved to procure supply, they also are positioning themselves to capture international commodity trading opportunities. Continue Reading →

China’s Commodities Binge Makes America’s Future More Expensive – by Jack Farchy, Alfred Cang and Mark Burton (Bloomberg News – April 1, 2021)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

The U.S. spending plan faces a big problem: Beijing got to all the raw materials first.

Fresh from passing a $1.9 trillion stimulus bill, U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday turned his attention to a similarly vast package of investment in infrastructure, and that means the U.S. is going to need more commodities. There’s just one problem: China.

America requires steel, cement, and tarmacadam for roads and bridges, and cobalt, lithium, and rare earths for batteries. Above all, it needs copper—and lots of it.

Copper will go into the electric vehicles that President Biden has said he’ll buy for the government fleet, in the charging stations to power them, and in the cables connecting new wind turbines and solar farms to the grid. Continue Reading →

Trafigura, New Caledonia group complete takeover of Vale’s Goro nickel, cobalt unit – by Diana Kinch (S&P Global – March 31, 2021)

https://www.spglobal.com/

London — The Prony Resources New Caledonia consortium announced March 31 it has completed acquisition of Vale Canada’s Nouvelle-Calédonie S.A.S. (VNC) nickel and cobalt operation. Prony Resources is owned by New Caledonia entities together with international commodities trader Trafigura.

Operations at Prony Resources recommenced in the week of March 28 with the restart of nickel production expected mid-April, the company said in a statement.

The operation, designed to produce up to 57,000 mt/year of processed nickel, with cobalt as a byproduct, is believed to have been at a standstill since mid-December 2020, following protests by independence activists on the Southwest Pacific French island territory of New Caledonia. Prior to this it had been producing below capacity. Continue Reading →

World’s No. 3 Gold Miner Sounds Cautious Note on Deals – by Feliz Njini (Yahoo Finance/Bloomberg – April 1, 2021)

https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/

(Bloomberg) — AngloGold Ashanti Ltd.’s acting Chief Executive Officer Christine Ramon said the world’s No. 3 gold miner won’t be rushed into deals as the industry braces for another round of mergers and acquisitions.

AngloGold won’t focus on scale for “the sake of it,” Ramon said during a panel discussion alongside the CEOs of Barrick Gold Corp. and Sibanye Stillwater Ltd., both proponents of consolidation.

Barrick and Newmont Corp. led a wave of mega deals two years ago and there are expectations that miners, flush with cash, will again look to expand through acquisitions. Continue Reading →

Gold Falters on Brightening Economic Outlook – by Joe Wallace (Wall Street Journal – April 1, 2021)

https://www.wsj.com/

The gold market has lost its glint, dashing the hopes of people who predicted that lavish stimulus spending by central banks and governments would send bullion prices to new heights this year.

Gold futures on Wednesday closed their worst quarter since 2016, falling 9.5% to $1,713.80 a troy ounce. Few assets have fared worse: namely, the price of orange-juice futures, cocoa, Turkey’s lira and long-term U.S. government bonds.

The precious metal has suffered a reversal in fortunes since August, when prices closed at a record $2,069.40 a troy ounce. Gold has since dropped 17%. Continue Reading →

Top Nickel Miner Vale Turns Page on 14-Year New Caledonia Foray – by James Attwood (Bloomberg News – March 31, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca

(Bloomberg) — Vale SA, the biggest producer of mined nickel, closed a deal to divest its underperforming New Caledonian mine to a group that includes the operation’s managers and workers.

The divestment will allow operations to continue and gives Vale the right to a portion of output amid growing demand for the battery metal, Rio de Janeiro-based Vale said in a statement Wednesday.

Tesla Inc. will support the operation through a “technical and industrial partnership” with the consortium, called Prony Resources. Continue Reading →

Opening of Cassini mine marks start of new era for Kambalda’s historic nickel mining industry – by Jarrod Lucas (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – March 29, 2021)

https://www.abc.net.au/

WA’s Mines Minister Bill Johnston will officially open a new nickel mine at Kambalda today, more than 50 years after the town was put on the map by the discovery of Australia’s first nickel mine.

The Cassini underground mine is Kambalda’s first new nickel development in two decades — since the Miitel mine began production in the year 2000.

More than 200 jobs have been created since September’s decision by Perth-based miner Mincor Resources to green light its $98 million restart plan for Kambalda’s once-booming nickel industry. Continue Reading →

Indonesia plays hardball with its nickel – by James Guild (East Asia Forum – March 30, 2021)

https://www.eastasiaforum.org/

Nickel has become increasingly important beyond its traditional use in stainless steel manufacturing as the base metal is a key component in lithium-ion batteries, including the kind used in electric vehicles (EVs).

As the world’s big automakers begin scaling up the production of EVs, nickel and the batteries it goes into are expected to be in high demand. With the largest reserves of nickel deposits in the world, Indonesia is no longer content to simply export its raw ore.

Indonesia wants to take a central position in the value-added links in the EV supply chain — from mining the ore, to refining it, to manufacturing the batteries and eventually to building the cars. And because Indonesia controls the raw input, it turns out it has a lot of leverage. Continue Reading →

‘It’s hard, we’re neighbours’: the coalmine polluting friendships on Poland’s borders – by Pawel Wiejski (The Guardian – March 29, 2021)

https://www.theguardian.com/

When the Czech government announced it was taking Poland to Europe’s highest court it came as a surprise to Warsaw. After all, EU countries rarely sue one another. Prague’s demand is a politically explosive one.

Not only is it challenging the extension of mining activity at Turów, a vast lignite mine that has been in operation for nearly 100 years, it also wants the European court of justice to order its immediate closure.

Sandwiched between Germany and the Czech Republic in the Silesia region of south-west Poland, the open-pit mine is depleting the groundwater supplies of its neighbours and violates EU environmental law, the Czech government alleges. Continue Reading →

More drilling planned at Donlin this year – by Staff (MiningWeekly.com – March 29, 2021)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

Donlin Gold, the 50:50 joint venture between Barrick Gold and Novagold Resources, has confirmed a follow-up drill programme for the Alaska project this year, following the strong outcome of its 2020 campaign.

Additional confirmation and extension drilling is planned, with specifics to be finalised once all assay results from the 2020 drill programme have been integrated into an interim model update.

Thereafter, the focus will shift to updating the feasibility study. Barrick and Novagold last week announced the final assay results from the 2020 drill programme, which the companies said exceeded expectations. Continue Reading →

Coal Country Races to Shield Itself From Biden’s Climate Plan – by Will Wade (Bloomberg News – March 29, 2021)

https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/

(Bloomberg) — Coal’s slow downfall is gaining momentum across the U.S. as clean energy becomes cheaper and wins widespread support, but lawmakers in mining states from Wyoming to West Virginia are determined to fight back with a series of roadblocks to President Joe Biden’s plan to cut greenhouse-gas emissions.

Seeking to prolong the lifespan of an industry that’s vital to local economies, at least five states are seeking to pass legislation that would give them weapons such as bigger hurdles to shut coal-fired plants, a war chest for potential legal battles, more power to state regulators over utilities, tax cuts and cheaper state insurance for power stations.

The race to shield coal country from an energy transition that Biden contends will generate jobs and wealth in everything from solar-panel manufacturing to wind power generation highlights the political complexity of the shift to renewables. Continue Reading →

Rare earth quandary: China has US by the throat – by Dave Makichuk (Asia Times – March 28, 2021)

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The facts are nothing short of startling. A high-tech F-35 stealth fighter jet contains 920 lbs. of rare earth elements (REEs). Each US Navy Arleigh Burke-class AEGIS destroyer has 5,200 lbs., and a Virginia-class submarine has 9,200 lbs.

These commodities are also key to the future of alternative energy, electric vehicles, mobile phones, and even headphones. Combine that with the fact that 80% of all American rare earth supplies come from China.

A nation now run by leader, Xi Jinping, who recently ordered his Marine Corps — in an act of sheer madness, or, to up the ante on the US — to prepare for war. Continue Reading →

The only city in Northwest Territories – by A.J. Roan (North of 60 Mining News – March 26, 2021)

https://www.miningnewsnorth.com/

Far to the north lies the second largest of Canada’s three territories, simply named the Northwest Territories, and within this vast region of more than 400,000 square miles lies its only city, the capital called Yellowknife.

Yellowknife, and most of the region of the Northwest Territories, lies within what is known as the Canadian Shield, a large area of Precambrian igneous and metamorphic rock, meaning it dates to the earliest part of Earth’s history.

Scoured down to stone during the last ice age, glaciation has receded over time, revealing a joined bedrock region in eastern and central Canada, stretching from north of the Great Lakes to the Arctic Ocean, this shield covers more than half of Canada and most of Greenland, and extends south into the northern parts of the United States. Continue Reading →