Scratch that: feds to rethink Ring of Fire environmental assessment after First Nations criticism – by Emma McIntosh (TheNarwhal – March 7, 2023)


‘There is no access to critical minerals in Canada without Indigenous Peoples being at the table in a decision-making position,’ Federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault said

Federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault has agreed to scrap a draft framework for a regional assessment in the Ontario Ring of Fire region and start over, working with First Nations.

For over a decade, governments and companies have sought to mine in the remote and environmentally-sensitive area known as the Ring of Fire. Accessible only by plane, or ice road in the winter, it’s located in the James Bay Lowlands and has deposits of key minerals that some people want to mine to fuel the production of electric vehicles.

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Ring of Fire takes next step over some First Nations’ objections – by Aidan Chamandy (Timmins Today – March 7, 2023)

The environmental assessment on a portion of the road to the Ring of Fire is being led by two First Nations, but another affected community isn’t pleased with the announcement

A plan by two First Nations to build a road to Ontario’s Ring of Fire has been approved by the provincial government — but another First Nations community affected by the project is not on board.

Last year, Webequie First Nation and Marten Falls First Nation published a 253-page document outlining the terms of reference for an assessment of Ontario’s proposed road to the Ring of Fire. On Monday, Ontario approved the terms at the massive Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) mining conference in downtown Toronto.

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Curiosity spurred Virginia Heffernan to write a Ring of Fire book – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – March 4, 2023)

Toronto mining journalist hits PDAC 2023 with a primer on arrested development in the Far North

“Keep the faith.” It was an oft-used phrase by Richard “Dick” Nemis, a Sudbury native and colourful mining promoter whose company, Noront Resources, secured one of the largest land positions in the mineral-rich area of the James Bay known as the Ring of Fire.

Nemis clung to that motto even as he was being ousted by shareholders as the president of the junior mining company he helped establish in October 2008. It was personal blow since the exploration outfit was named after his father’s industrial fabrication company, started in the Nickel City in 1945, and still in operation today.

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‘It shouldn’t take 15 years to open a mine’ – by Staff (Sudbury Star – March 4, 2023)

Vale and Glencore officials say they support changes the government says will make it easier and quicker to open a mine

Saying it takes too long to get a new mine approved, the Ontario government on Thursday introduced legislation to speed up the process.

“It shouldn’t take 15 years to open a mine. This process is too time-consuming and costly, leading to project delays and lost opportunities for Ontario’s mineral exploration and mining sector,” George Pirie, the province’s minister of Mines, said in a release. “We need to get building.

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Feds won’t match Ontario’s billion-dollar Ring of Fire pledge until assessments are done – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – March 2, 2023)

Federal Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson pledges Ottawa will do better on advancing critical mineral production

Federal Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson vows to make government move faster and more efficiently in expediting approvals to put more Canadian mines into production ahead of the quickening global demand for critical minerals.

“There are a whole bunch of things we can do to make the processes move more effectively than they have in the past,” said Wilkinson.

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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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The Drift: Glencore hopes to attract ‘best and brightest’ to Sudbury mining electric vehicle lab – by Lindsay Kelly (Northern Ontario Business – March 3, 2023)

Glencore Sudbury INO’s $350,000 donation to Cambrian College will be ‘transformative gift’ in advancing BEV innovation

Growing up, Matteo Neville was the kind of kid who spent his time taking apart motors and engines just so he could figure out how they worked.

He was fascinated by robotics and technology, electronics and programming, so when he decided to return to school as a mature student, he was immediately drawn to Cambrian College’s mechatronics program.

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The Drift: Sudbury’s Dynamic Earth aims to tell a ‘modern mining’ story – by Lindsay Kelly (Northern Ontario Business – February 27, 2023)

$10-million Go Deeper expansion project will be ‘transformational’ for Sudbury tourist attraction

A premier Sudbury tourist attraction is undergoing a major renewal this year, one that its CEO calls “transformational,” both for the city and for the mining and tourism industries.

Go Deeper is a $10-million, multi-year construction and development endeavour to modernize Dynamic Earth, the sister attraction to Science North. The plan involves new construction at the Big Nickel Road site, as well as additional programming and educational materials that will be accessed by users across Northern Ontario and Canada.

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Magino Mine construction in the final stretch: Argonaut Gold’s Dubreuilville-area pit project scheduled for first gold pour in May – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontairo Business – February 28, 2023)

Argonaut Gold has started mining and stockpiling gold ore at its open-pit mining project outside Dubreuilville in anticipation of the first gold pour in mid-May.

The Toronto company is in the final stages of construction at its Magino Mine site. The targeted start of commercial mining operations is in the third quarter of this year. Argonaut released its 2022 fourth-quarter and year-end financials before markets opened on Feb.27.

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Former Sudbury nickel, copper mines yield new discoveries – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – February 28, 2023)

Magna Mining pushing the boundaries to find additional resources at Crean Hill and Shakespeare mines

Magna Mining, an aspiring metals producer in Sudbury, has tapped into a new mineral zone near the surface at the site of a former Inco mine.

The local company launched a drill program this winter to look into how much life is left in the once-producing Crean Hill mine on the southeast corner of the Sudbury basin.

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Agnico Eagle raising the gold production bar in the Abitibi – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – February 21, 2023)

Mine expansion at Detour Lake and Kirkland Lake figure prominently in gold production plans

There are more ounces to be pulled from the Abitibi gold belt, says Agnico Eagle. The Toronto gold company maintains it can produce more than two million ounces out of this region of northeastern Ontario and western Quebec by 2025, an area where Agnico got its start in the late 1950s. Agnico has five mines within this 32,000-square-kilometre area.

In a Feb. 17 conference call with analysts, Agnico management said it believes 2023 is an exciting year to advance a pipeline of projects and start to expand production at its existing operations while keeping production and total costs down to a low of $800 an ounce.

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Having nickel in Timmins ‘extremely attractive’, says CEO – by Maija Hoggett (Timmins Today – February 23, 223)

‘We think we’re in the early phase of unlocking an entire nickel district’

A mine developer says Timmins is in the early phase of unlocking a nickel district. Canada Nickel CEO Mark Selby gave an update on its Crawford Project today at the Timmins Chamber’s State of Mining event.

Crawford is a proposed open-pit mine 40 kilometres north of the city. It’s slated to be a zero-emission operation. “This would be one of the largest nickel sulphide mines globally. Based on the scale of the resource that’s there it has the potential to be even larger.

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Stacy Kennedy first woman appointed as permanent head of Vale Manitoba Operations – by Ian Graham (Thompson Citizen – February 22, 2023)

Vale’s Manitoba Operations will be permanently overseen by a woman for the first time come March 1, when Stacy Kennedy takes over the top job in Thompson.

Kennedy, who has previously served as interim general manager of Manitoba Operations and interim mine manager, inherits the role from Gary Annett, who is returning to his home of Sudbury, Ontario, where he will continue to work for the company, said a Feb. 22 Vale Canada press release. “I’m really excited to be taking on this role at a time when there’s a real shift happening in the mining industry,” said Kennedy in a press release.

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Queen’s Park provides stimulus funding in the hunt for much-needed critical minerals – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – February 16, 2023)

Ontario Junior Exploration Program offers exploration funding for junior miners

There’s a looming global crunch for high-tech metals to feed the electric vehicle industry and not enough mines currently in production to meet that increasing demand.

To incentivize more exploration in Ontario, the provincial government announced in Sault Ste. Marie that it has invested $5.8 million to help a handful of exploration companies hunt for critical metals like nickel, copper, cobalt and lithium. The funding will be delivered through the Ontario Junior Exploration Program (OJEP) as part of a special critical minerals stream, launched in 2021.

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Robinson Superior Treaty annuity trial continues at University of Sudbury – by Jenny Lamothe and Heidi Ulrichsen (Northern Ontario Business/ – February 17, 2023)

Experts, economists debate the value of development, resource extraction in treaty area

The third stage of the Robinson Superior Treaty annuity trial resumed this week at the University of Sudbury with the testimony of David Hutchings, an economist who specializes in conducting economic analysis in complex tax, securities and antitrust matters.

Presenting his report on behalf of the Anishnaabe people of the Superior area Feb. 13 and 14, and continuing next week, Hutchings offered his report as a reply to the economists who testified on behalf of the Crown.

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