NDP to retable bill to block coal mining in Rocky Mountains – by Bob Weber (Canadian Press/Edmonton Journal – March 14, 2022)


EDMONTON — Alberta’s United Conservative government has refused for the second time to move ahead with an Opposition bill that would have placed legally enforceable restrictions on coal mining in the Rocky Mountains. That shuffles the Eastern Slopes Protection Act back to a legislative committee that could rule the bill won’t proceed at all.

On Monday, the Opposition New Democrats retabled the private member’s bill that would have substituted actual legislation for an order from Energy Minister Sonya Savage restricting coal mining in the Rocky Mountains. NDP Leader Rachel Notley, the bill’s sponsor, said a politician’s promise isn’t enough to protect those much-loved landscapes.

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Grassy Narrows First Nation looking at next options to protect land from mining activity in Ontario – by Logan Turner (CBC Thunder Bay – March 1, 2022)


Ontario mining recorder refused First Nation request to have prospective miners notified of legal risks

Members of a First Nation in northwestern Ontario are back to the drawing board in their attempts to protect traditional lands from continued impacts of industrial activity.

Most recently, leadership from Asubpeeschoseewagong Anishinabek (Grassy Narrows) asked Ontario to inform companies and prospectors about the risks of staking a mineral claim in Grassy Narrows’s traditional territory.

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Between a rock and a hard place: The energy transition is sparking America’s next mining boom (The Economist – February 19, 2022)


About 16m years ago, a supervolcano that straddled the borders of what is now Oregon and Nevada erupted, forming the McDermitt Caldera. The volcanic activity pushed lithium-rich rock up near the Earth’s surface, creating the largest known lithium deposit in the United States.

Today, the same terrain around the Montana Mountains is carpeted with sagebrush, and coyotes are heard more often than people. But that may soon change. Lithium Americas, a Canadian company, has plans to build a mine and processing plant at Thacker Pass, near the southern tip of the caldera in Nevada. It would be America’s biggest lithium mine.

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Brazil’s Bolsonaro issues decrees to boost mining of Amazon – by David Biller (The Publics Radio – February 14, 2022)


RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has issued two decrees to drive gold prospecting with a focus on the Amazon rainforest, according to the texts published Monday in the official gazette.

The Program to Support Development of Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining created by one decree aims to strengthen policies and stimulate best practices, according to the text. The Amazon “will be the priority region for the development of works,” it says.

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Two decades and $30 million later, a B.C. mine proposal is officially dead – by Matt Simmons (The Narwhal – February 9, 2022)

The Narwhal

They say that history repeats itself because nobody was listening the first time. B.C. rejected a proposed open-pit copper, gold and molybdenum mine for the second time Monday, spelling the likely end of a saga that lasted nearly 20 years, cost tens of millions of dollars and exposed flaws in B.C.’s environmental assessment process along the way.

Plans for the Morrison mine, proposed for the shores of Morrison Lake, known as T’akh Tl’ah Bin, about 65 kilometres from Smithers on Lake Babine Nation territory, go back to the ‘90s — although miners have been eyeing the area for its gold and copper since as far back as the ‘60s.

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MMG to halt Las Bambas copper mine amid fresh blockade – by Cecilia Jamasmie February 7, 2022 (Mining.com – February 7, 2022)


MMG (HKG: 1208) said on Monday that it will have to halt production at its Las Bambas copper mine in Peru by February 20, following a new and ongoing blockade of the road used by the company, which has already forced the Chinese miner to curtail operations.

Residents of the Chumbivilcas province have been blocking the main access to Las Bambas on and off since November 20. They demand jobs and economic contributions from the company, a unit of state-owned China Minmetals, which they say has failed to benefit residents despite its great wealth.

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NIMBYism Is Global, And That’s A Problem For The Energy Transition – by David Blackmon (Forbes Magazine – January 23, 2022)


It’s one of the grand ironies in the whole energy transition narrative: The same class of left-leaning activists who promote wind and solar and electric vehicles (EVs) as the solution also oppose the mining of the lithium and other critical minerals necessary to make them work.

EVs cannot displace internal combustion engine autos without lithium. The EV industry has irrevocably tied itself to lithium-ion technology for its batteries: Without plentiful and affordable supplies of lithium, the industry will fail.

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Analysis-Rio Tinto has few options to save Serbia lithium mine, none good – by Clara Denina (Yahoo Finance – January 24, 2022)


LONDON (Reuters) – Rio Tinto has only bad options as it tries to salvage its $2.4 billion Serbian lithium project after the country’s leaders bowed to environmentalists and cancelled it last week.

The Anglo-Australian miner could sue the government, a step likely to fail and further antagonise Belgrade, or bet that pro-mining politicians emerge victorious in April parliamentary elections, a result that would embolden opponents.

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Serbia revokes Rio Tinto lithium project licences amid protests – by Ivana Sekularac (Reuters – January 20, 2022)


BELGRADE, Jan 20 (Reuters) – Serbia revoked Rio Tinto’s (RIO.L) lithium exploration licences on Thursday, bowing to protesters who opposed the development of the project by the Anglo-Australian mining giant on environmental grounds.

Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said the government’s decision came after requests by various green groups to halt the$2.4 billion Jadar lithium project which, if completed, would help make Rio a top 10 lithium producer.

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Opinion: Keep Alaska’s pristine wild lands free of poisonous industrial mining – by Seth Kantner (Seattle Times – January 19, 2022)


Seth Kantner lives in northern Alaska and is a commercial fisherman and the author of “Ordinary Wolves” and recently released, “A Thousand Trails Home: Living With Caribou.”

This fall before the ice froze, I started a letter to President Joe Biden. I was gathering cranberries on the hill above the old sod igloo where I was born and raised, thinking while my hands worked, thinking about food, and health, and how here that is the definition of success.

The berries were still liquid, soft and not easy to pick without crushing. They stained my fingers pink where my nails and knuckles weren’t coated dark with blood from the caribou I’d hunted earlier, for meat. I hadn’t found snow to wash my hands.

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Biden’s green agenda requires batteries, but building them is dirty business – by Jordan Wolman (Politico.com – January 18, 2022)


To win the war on global warming and triumph in an economic showdown with China, President Joe Biden needs an essential weapon — lithium. But before he can count on vast U.S. reserves of the critical metal, he has to win multiple smaller fights on his home turf.

In Nevada, conservationists and Indigenous activists are camped at the site of a proposed open-pit lithium mine as the project is challenged in court. A rare wildflower has a second mine in the state at a standstill. Maine’s mining laws, some of the strictest in the nation, will make it nearly impossible to extract lithium from a large deposit there without changes by the legislature.

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Federal government must regulate Canadian mining companies operating overseas, says activist (CBC The Current – January 13, 2022)


For 13 years, Angélica Choc has been fighting to stop alleged abuses carried out on Indigenous peoples in her native Guatemala by Canadian mining companies and their subsidiaries — and she wants the Canadian government to do its part.

“It’s exhausting. I am so tired. And I continue persevering, seeking justice in the Canadian courts,” she told The Current’s Matt Galloway. In 2009, Choc’s husband, Mayan Q’eqchi’ community leader Adolfo Ich Chamán, was killed by security personnel working at a Guatemalan mine that he opposed. The mine was owned by a subsidiary of Canadian mining company Hudbay Minerals.

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The World Wants More Lithium But Doesn’t Want More Mines – by Thomas Biesheuvel and Misha Savic (Finacial Post/Bloomberg News – December 18, 2021)


(Bloomberg) — Prices for lithium, the building block of electric-vehicle batteries, shot to a record this year, amplifying concerns there won’t be enough of the metal to fuel the switch away from combustion engines. In that climate, now should be a prime time to build a mine.

Rio Tinto Group is finding out otherwise. Within months of unveiling plans for a $2.4 billion mine in western Serbia, local opponents organized a movement that’s rocked the government and brought cities to a standstill as thousands of protesters march in the streets. Authorities subsequently suspended a land-use plan for the proposed mine, though they didn’t reject the project completely.

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Serbia suspends lithium mine plans after protests – by Dusan Stojanovic (Associated Press – December 16, 2021)


BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Local authorities in western Serbia on Thursday suspended a plan that would allow mining giant Rio Tinto to operate a lithium mine, following protests by environmentalists that shook the country’s populist leadership.

The mining had been expected to start in the near future, but a town council in Loznica voted to suspend a regional development plan that permitted the excavation of lithium. The vote followed the suspension last week of two key laws in Serbia’s parliament that ecologists said would help the multinational mining company start the project.

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Column: Europe’s green deal needs to get round anti-mining roadblock – by Andy Home (Reuters – December 16, 2021)


LONDON, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Protesters took to the streets in Serbia again on Saturday. It was the third consecutive weekend of marches and road blockades against the government’s push to develop its mining sector.

Opposition groups have coalesced around one project in particular – Rio Tinto’s (RIO.L) proposed lithium mine in the Jadar Valley. In Portugal’s Serra d’Arga mountains lithium is also the target of environmental resistance, with five local mayors leading a demonstration in October to protest a mine project.

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