Indigenous groups lead the renewable transition in northern Canada – by Jesse Chase-Lubitz (Yahoo News – February 28, 2023)

A solution to climate change is emerging in one of the regions most affected by it. In Nunavut — the northernmost territory of Canada — a coalition of Indigenous communities is transitioning the region away from diesel and toward renewable energy.

In 2018, Nukik Corporation, which was formed by individuals in the Indigenous Inuit population, started planning the Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Link, a set of electricity and fiber-optic transmission cables. The link would connect the vast regions of rural northern Canada to a southern Canadian renewable energy grid in the province of Manitoba.

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Ontario Power Generation urges province to move ahead with new power projects – by Matthew McClearn (Globe and Mail – February 14, 2023)

Ontario Power Generation has urged Ontario’s government to move forward with new hydroelectric generation plants in Northern Ontario.

In a report released Monday, the province’s largest utility told the provincial government that the region contains up to 4,000 megawatts of untapped hydroelectric potential. OPG recommended that planning for new facilities begin immediately, given the long lead times involved.

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News Release: Kingfisher Lake First Nation Energized by Wataynikaneyap Power (November 24, 2022)

The ‘line that brings light’ connects Kingfisher Lake First Nation to the provincial power grid

FORT WILLIAM FIRST NATION, Ontario, Nov. 24, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Wataynikaneyap Power announces the energization of Kingfisher Lake First Nation, a remote northern Ontario community, which was connected to the provincial power grid on November 8, 2022. Upon grid connection and onto a reliable power source, the community turned off its diesel generators which had previously provided primary power to this remote community.

The Wataynikaneyap Power transmission system connects the Kingfisher Lake community distribution system to the Ontario grid through a total of 250 km of line and two substations, originating from its Pickle Lake Substation. Kingfisher Lake will continue to be served by Hydro One Remotes Communities Inc. (HORCI) for the local distribution of electricity.

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Told ‘no’ 37 times, this Indigenous-owned company brought electricity to James Bay anyway – by Fatima Syed (The Narwhal – October 20, 2022)

The Narwhal

Twenty-five years ago, five First Nations brought power to their remote, underserved communities, defying skepticism, scorn and swampy terrain

For the Indigenous communities along northern Ontario’s James Bay — the ones that have lived on and taken care of the lands as long as anyone can remember — the new millenium marked the start of a diesel-less future.

While the southern part of the province took Ontario’s power grid for granted, the vast majority of these communities had never been plugged in. Their only source of power was a handful of very loud diesel-powered generators. Because of that, daily life in the Attawapiskat, Kashechewan and Fort Albany First Nations involved deliberating a series of tradeoffs.

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Ontario to aid northern industrial sectors with energy costs – by Sarah St-Pierre (CIM Magazine – April 22, 2022)

With the Northern Energy Advantage Program, Ontario doubles down on a shift towards green industry

Through its recently unveiled Northern Energy Advantage Program (NEAP), the Ontario government is aiming to strengthen Northern Ontario’s industrial sector by bringing down its electricity costs and building towards net-zero emissions.

Under the program, which is a revamp of the former Northern Industrial Electricity Rate (NIER) program, participating companies will receive rebates of $20 per megawatt-hour on electricity costs.

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With an election in sight, Doug Ford once again ready to hop on the Ring of Fire ‘bulldozer’ – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – April 8, 2022)

Ontario premier appears in the Sault to charge up Algoma Steel and the critical minerals mining industry

Premier Doug Ford didn’t back down from his government’s commitment to invest in the development of a north-south road network into the Ring of Fire.

The premier and some provincial cabinet ministers were in Sault Ste. Marie on April 8, surrounded by steel coils on the floor of Algoma Steel’s Direct Strip Production Complex to unveil the province’s expanded Northern Energy Advantage Program (NEAP), a power rebate program for heavy industrial users in the North.

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Inside the Indigenous-led power line deal that put 17 First Nations on the grid – by Wendy Stueck (Globe and Mail – October 14, 2021)

By the time Wataynikaneyap Power announced, in October, 2019, that it had locked in financing to start building an 1,800-kilometre transmission line to connect 17 First Nations communities to the Ontario power grid, Margaret Kenequanash had earned a chance to catch her breath.

A member of the North Caribou Lake First Nation, Ms. Kenequanash had been pursuing the transmission project for more than a decade, first as a community leader and, since 2017, as Wataynikaneyap’s chief executive officer.

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The Drift: Could the mining industry consider the nuclear option to power remote mines? – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – July 23, 2021)

Laurentian University research institute studies how small-scale reactors could replace diesel generation in the Far North

Is there a viable marriage between mining and nuclear power? Laurentian University researcher François Caron aims to find out. There are 10 off-grid operating mines in remote areas of Canada, most of them reliant on diesel generation.

That’ll be a no-go in the years to come as the mining industry faces mounting pressure from society, government climate change legislation, even environmentally conscious investors, to cut its greenhouse-gas emissions and carbon footprint.

To be able to power potential mining camps in greenfield areas where grid power doesn’t reach, the nuclear energy option is being increasingly examined.

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Failure of Eskom to be “the death knell” of SA mining sector, says Exxaro’s Mgojo – by David McKay ( – January 15, 2020)


EXXARO Resources CEO, Mxolisi Mgojo, said that without a properly functioning power utility company – Eskom – South Africa’s mining industry would cease to function.

“The current state of Eskom is going to be the one thing that is going to be the death knell of this industry,” Mgojo was cited by Bloomberg News to have said in an article republished by Yahoo Finance. Mgojo is also the president of the Minerals Council South Africa.

Mgojo was commenting at a conference organised by Business Unity South Africa, the country’s largest business lobby group. “Without fixing Eskom we don’t have a mining industry. It is as dire as that.”

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South Africa’s mining industry calls for action to end power crisis (Reuters U.S. – January 13, 2020)

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s mining industry body on Monday urged the government to bring on stream new private sector power sources to ease the power crisis that has pushed the country to the brink of recession.

Struggling state-owned utility Eskom was forced to implement power cuts across the country last year and also last week even though many businesses and factories were closed for the holidays.

The power cuts have piled pressure on President Cyril Ramaphosa, who came to power with a pledge to revive investor confidence and boost economic growth.

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OPINION: Bringing an end to South Africa’s power struggle – by Sizwe Dlamini (Independent Online – December 17, 2019)

CAPE TOWN – South Africa remains one of the best mining jurisdictions in the world with more than $2.5 trillion (R36.2 trillion) mineral wealth still in situ.

This is according to Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe, who told delegates at the Africa Down Under event earlier this year that as things stood no country could match South Africa in terms of mineral diversity offerings.

Data from Statistics SA show that South Africa’s mining industry is one of the key economic sectors in the country, contributing about 7.5 percent to gross domestic product (GDP), 30 percent of export earnings, and more than 450 000 direct jobs.

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South African mining revival threatened as power cuts take toll – by Felix Njini (MiningWeekly/Bloomberg – December 12, 2019)

JOHANNESBURG – When South Africa’s State-owned utility announced record power cuts on Monday afternoon, Impala Platinum Holdings had two hours to hoist thousands of workers from 1 km deep shafts.

The deepening crisis at debt-ridden Eskom Holdings shut down South Africa’s key mining industry for 24 hours, hitting gold and platinum producers that had been enjoying a renaissance on the back of higher metal prices. The rolling blackouts threaten to tip South Africa’s economy into recession and hobble miners already impacted by community protests and xenophobic violence.

Johannesburg-based Implats was ordered to cut electricity usage to 55 MW from about 300 MW, forcing it to reduce power to furnaces by 90% and shutting down refrigeration and compressor plants.

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Palladium Tops $1,900 as South Africa Power Cuts Fuel Supply Woe – by Elena Mazneva and Justina Vasquez (Bloomberg/Yahoo – December 10, 2019)

(Bloomberg) Palladium surged to a record, topping $1,900 an ounce, after South African mining companies halted operations in response to the country’s power cuts. Platinum also rose.

South Africa, the world’s biggest producer of platinum and No. 2 palladium supplier, faced a sixth day of rolling blackouts Tuesday. State utility Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. is struggling with breakdowns at plants and heavy rains that have soaked coal used as fuel.

“Tight supply that potentially could get even tighter due to production problems in South Africa helps provide the underlying support,” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank A/S.

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Ramaphosa Cuts Short Trip as Power Crisis Grips South Africa – by Paul Vecchiatto and Liezel Hill (Bloomberg/Yahoo – December 11, 2019)

(Bloomberg) South African President Cyril Ramaphosa cut short a trip abroad to deal with an escalating crisis at the state power company, as week-long blackouts threaten to tip the economy into recession.

The rand declined the most in a month Tuesday as Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. said there’s a high likelihood of power cuts all week and mining companies including Sibanye Gold Ltd., the world’s biggest platinum producer, temporarily halted operations. Vodacom Group Ltd., the nation’s biggest mobile operator, said the outages are disrupting its service.

Ramaphosa returned from Egypt, having terminated his trip a day early to “attend to urgent domestic priorities,” the presidency said in a statement. Eskom management will brief the president on Wednesday morning on “plans to mitigate and resolve the current electricity crisis,” it said.

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South African mines grind to halt as floods worsen power crisis – by Helen Reid (Reuters U.S. – December 10, 2019)

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Mines across South Africa are shutting down after flash flooding caused the largest power blackouts in more than a decade, threatening a key export sector in a further blow to the country’s already slowing economy.

Heavy rains across parts of South Africa have submerged whole neighborhoods, leading to mass evacuations and aggravating problems at state-owned utility Eskom, which has been struggling to keep the lights on since 2008.

Harmony Gold, Impala Platinum, and Sibanye-Stillwater all said they had been forced to cut production since Monday owing to power shortages. “There are very few underground mines that operated overnight and will be operating normally today,” said a spokesman for the Minerals Council, an industry body.

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