Archive | Ontario Mining


THUNDER BAY, ON: – Today, the Chiefs of the nine Matawa First Nations (MFN) released the following statement in response to the Government of Ontario’s newly proposed legislation, Bill 132 Better for People, Smarter for Business Act tabled on Monday, October 28, 2019 during the 1st session of the 42nd legislature of the Ontario Legislative Assembly by the Hon. Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction.

“The proposed Better for People, Smarter for Business Act is deeply problematic for the Matawa Chiefs for a number of reasons. Notwithstanding the fact that the proposed bill, in its current omnibus form, covers a number of diverse and unrelated topics that were not brought forward in advance publicly for consultation, debate and scrutiny—we oppose the proposed amendments in relation to the Ontario Mining Act as they impact on our pre-existing inherent rights embodied in our jurisdiction and also protected by 35(1) of the Canada Constitution Act, 1982.

As the 4th annual Treaties Recognition Week is celebrated this week in the province, the proposed Better for People, Smarter for Business is a move to diminish these rights and instead prioritizes the interests of business and the economy. Continue Reading →

Rickford takes lead in battle to modernize Ontario’s Mining Act – by Zahraa Hmood (Kenora Miner & News – November 4, 2019)

With Ontario’s legislative assembly back in session at Queen’s Park as of last week, Kenora-Rainy River MPP Greg Rickford is moving forward his agenda to reduce provincial bureaucracy hindering the mining industry, including changes to the Mining Act.

Rickford said he held consultation meetings with stakeholders in several provincial industries over the summer, including the Mining Working Group, formed earlier this year to reduce red tape in the mining sector.

As the minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, Rickford met with the group on Tuesday, Oct. 29 at Queens’ Park for Meet the Miners Day. “Generally speaking, every sector had a consensus that our system was too expensive and too complicated,” he said. Continue Reading →

Ontario wants out of historic lawsuit – by Harold Carmichael (Sudbury Star/North Bay Nugget – November 6, 2019)

Judge to rule on whether province should pay annuities to First Nations in northeastern Ontario

A Sudbury judge is being asked to determine whether the province should be on the hook for annuity payments owed to First Nations in northeastern Ontario.

Superior Court Justice Patricia Hennessy has reserved her decision on this and other legal issues following nine days of hearings in Sudbury last month in her historic ruling involving the 21 First Nations that are part of the Robinson-Huron Treaty.

In December, Hennessy ruled the First Nations should have received increased annuity payments under the Robinson-Huron Treaty that was signed in 1850. Continue Reading →

Ontario renewed funding push for Ring of Fire roads as viability of venture questioned – by Niall McGee and Jeff Gray (Globe and Mail – November 4, 2019)

The Ontario government appealed to Ottawa this summer to split a $1.6-billion construction bill for roads into the Ring of Fire region, despite mounting evidence the minerals project in the province’s North isn’t economically viable.

Documents reviewed by The Globe and Mail show that Greg Rickford, Ontario’s Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, sent an e-mail in July to a number of federal ministers asking for Ottawa to kick in as much as $779-million to roughly match Ontario’s contribution.

As part of his business case for investing in the Ring of Fire, Mr. Rickford referenced a number of often-cited huge financial projections about the project that have no supporting evidence. Continue Reading →

Robotics stepping up safety in underground mine inspections – by Lindsay Kelly (Northern Ontario Business – November 1, 2019)

Combining old technology with modern robotics has resulted in a new safety innovation for underground mines that’s expected to reduce risk and improve efficiency.

The MRC Rail Runner, developed by SafeSight Exploration Inc. of North Bay, is a utility robot clamped onto a mechanized rail climber (MRC), which is sent up into a raise to do an inspection.

The robot is designed to replace humans who are required to visually inspect the raise for look for risks like potentially loose rock. In underground mining, a raise is a vertical underground excavation, running between various levels, that’s used for ventilation to the surface or for transporting ore and waste rock. Continue Reading →

Haunted mines and UFOs: Author Mark Leslie talks about Sudbury’s unique spooky stories – by Colleen Romaniuk (Northern Ontario Business – October 31, 2019)

To order a copy of Spooky Sudbury, click here:

About 1.85 billion years ago, a giant rock collided with the earth, creating what we now know as the Sudbury Basin. This major geological structure is the third largest impact crater in the world, and one of the oldest that has been discovered to date.

The impact of the meteorite resulted in an impact melt sheet containing nickel, copper, platinum, palladium, gold, and other metals – which eventually turned Sudbury into one of the biggest mining communities in the world.

Because of this history, it’s not surprising that Sudbury’s greatest stories have always been about what comes from the sky and what lives in the ground. Continue Reading →

Sudbury’s acid-damaged lakes have recovered faster than expected, experts say – by Colleen Romaniuk (Northern Ontario Business – October 30, 2019)

Sudbury’s acid-damaged lakes have made a faster recovery than experts thought possible. According to John Gunn, director of the Vale Living with Lakes Centre at Laurentian University, this is “proof positive that clean air produces clean water.”

Since the U.S. Clean Air Act of 1990, a lot of research has been done on a national and international level on the recovery process of severely damaged lakes. Researchers have done a lot to investigate the different factors that go into that recovery.

This year, the Vale Living with Lakes Centre launched the Community Restoration of Acid Damaged Lakes, or CRADL, with the support of Vale, Laurentian University, and the Ontario ministries of Environment, Conservation and Parks, and Natural Resources and Forestry. Continue Reading →

A JEWISH LEGACY OF THE NORTHERN ONTARIO GOLD RUSH – by Barbara Silverstein (Canadian Jewish News – October 28, 2019)


When gold was discovered near Timmins, Ont., in 1909, the area attracted fortune hunters from all over the world. Many Jewish merchants headed to northern Ontario to set up stores in small towns and settlements throughout the region.

Two of those people were Max Steinberg and Joe Mahn. Steinberg, a German immigrant, went to the northern bush camps in 1918 to sell watches and clothing. In 1919, he and Mahn – they had met in Montreal – opened Steinberg & Mahn, a menswear store in Timmins.

This month, Steinberg & Mahn, Timmins’ longest-operating family owned menswear clothier, is marking its 100th anniversary. The Steinberg family has run the store continuously since 1919 and the fourth generation is now at the helm. Continue Reading →

The road to nowhere: Claims Ontario’s Ring of Fire is worth $60-billion are nonsense – by Niall McGee and Jeff Gray (Globe and Mail – October 26, 2019)

Ontario Premier Doug Ford has talking points he’s fond of repeating – over and over again – and one of his favourites is a pledge to build a billion-dollar road to a boggy, remote region of Northern Ontario known as the Ring of Fire.

When asked about the promise by a reporter at a plowing match in September, Mr. Ford repeated almost verbatim an infamous tweet from last year’s provincial election campaign: “If I have to hop on a bulldozer myself, we’re going to start building roads to the Ring of Fire.”

“You’re going to see me on that bulldozer,” Mr. Ford declared, with a confident chuckle. The declaration by the Ontario premier is just one example of the big talk over the past decade by politicians of all stripes about the Ring of Fire. Continue Reading →

Noront officials grilled on proposed Soo smelter – by Jairus Patterson (CTV News Northern Ontario – October 24, 2019)

Thursday night in Sault Ste. Marie, residents had an opportunity to speak with Noront Resources officials regarding the ferrochrome smelter that is expected to be built in the city over the next decade as part of the Ring of Fire project.

For five hours, the Noront team was grilled by the public with concerns regarding the proposed smelter. CTV News spoke with Noront President and Chief Executive Officer Alan Coutts at the event. Coutts said his team was asked a lot of questions.

“Some that we can answer and some that we can’t answer yet. We’re taking notes, we’re trying to engage. We’re trying to provide the information that we can,” The information was presented in an open house format in a hotel boardroom with everyone free to move around. It is a set up many residents say just did not work. Continue Reading →

OPINION: Thunder Bay: the pain, the opportunity, and the newspaper – by Michael Atkins (Northern Ontario Business – October 1, 2019)

This is about people, about poverty, about sharing a land and its resources, about the clash or the fusion of cultures in the North and building sustainability for our children.

Eight months ago, the Globe and Mail newspaper opened a bureau in Thunder Bay. They did so because, in December, 2018, the Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD), a civilian oversight agency, concluded that the Thunder Bay Police Service was tainted by racist attitudes towards Indigenous people. The report was called “Broken Trust.”

A few days later, Senator Murray Sinclair, the former head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, submitted a report that accused the Thunder Bay Police Services Board of willful blindness to racism.

There have been unsettling examples of racism beyond the occurrence of nine sudden-death investigations by Thunder Bay police, which have been described as problematic. One of the most graphic was the throwing of a trailer hitch from a passing pickup truck at two Indigenous women walking along a residential street. One died six weeks later. Continue Reading →

Ontario Mining Association: Making the world cleaner, greener and technologically advanced – by Daniel Brightmore (Global Mining – October 21, 2019)

Mining Global hears from Ontario Mining Association President Chris Hodgson on the capabilities of the mining industry to deliver the minerals and metals making modern life and innovation possible.

The Ontario Mining Association (OMA) was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry in the province of Ontario. One of the longest serving trade organisations in Canada, much has changed since the association was founded, but its mission remains consistent: to improve the competitiveness of Ontario’s mining industry while promoting safety and sustainability.

“Down the years, the OMA has maintained its core commitment to these ideals while embracing the change we’ve seen across the evolution of society’s expectations and the mining industry’s capacity to meet them,” confirms OMA President Chris Hodgson. Continue Reading →

Northwestern Ontario could host one of Canada’s largest gold mines (Northern Ontario Business – October 18, 2019)

First Mining Gold’s technical study places 12-year mine life on Springpole project

A technical study is putting a 12-year mine life on a proposed open pit gold and silver mine in the Red Lake area of northwestern Ontario. First Mining Gold released a new preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for its $959-million Springpole Gold Project mine and mill operation.

In an Oct. 16 release, the company said the PEA provides updated metallurgical work that should significantly improve gold and silver recoveries.

Located 110 kilometres northeast of Red Lake, the company refers to Springpole as being “one of the largest undeveloped open pit gold projects in North America.” Continue Reading →

Timmins feels door still open for ferrochrome plant – by Ron Grech (Timmins Daily Press – October 18, 2019)

Mayor George Pirie remains confident Timmins will ultimately be the location of the ferrochrome processing facility which Noront Resources awarded to Sault Ste. Marie earlier this year.

“I still have the same opinion (as he had in May when Noront made it announcement) we’re going to get it,” said Pirie, shortly before Friday’s start of the annual general meeting of the Timmins Economic Development Corporation.” It won’t get built in Sault Ste. Marie.

“They haven’t done the consultations with the right Indigenous groups. You can see the fact that they don’t have the right area set up for the product and the tailings facilities — we do. Continue Reading →

INCO trailblazer and champion of women’s rights tells her story in new memoir – by Colleen Romaniuk (Northern Ontario Business – October 17, 2019)

Cathy Mulroy has always understood that well-behaved women seldom make history. In 1974, after becoming one of the first women hired in a non-traditional role at INCO since the Second World War, the Sudbury native, who stood at 5 feet 1 inch and weighed 105 pounds, was quickly labelled a troublemaker.

As a 19-year-old mother stuck in a toxic marriage, Mulroy signed up to work in the copper refinery in the anode department casting molten metal copper with the hope of earning enough to become financially independent.

She was often found guilty for the crime of sticking up for herself, and in Mulroy’s own words, she “never put up with crap.” Years later, after Mulroy retired, she decided to write a book about her experience using all the material she accumulated over the years. Mulroy documented everything, writing on cigarette packs, paper towels, and in diaries, collecting newspaper clippings, and more. Continue Reading →