‘We are truly sorry’: Ontario apologizes for role in McIntyre Powder experiment – by Lindsay Kelly (Northern Ontario Business – November 30, 2022)


Province acknowledges its role in debunked practice during Nov. 30 delivery in Legislative Assembly

With miners and family members looking on, the Province of Ontario officially apologized Wednesday for its role in exposing underground hard rock miners to aluminum dust during their work in Northern Ontario over a span of nearly four decades.

The Nov. 30 address delivered on a promise House Leader Paul Calandra made last spring that the province would acknowledge its failure to protect miners who were forced to inhale McIntyre Powder as a condition of employment — a practice that was endorsed by the government of the day and later proven to be not only useless, but harmful.

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Top federal government official casts doubt on Ontario’s Ring of Fire mining development – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – November 29, 2022)


A top Canadian federal government official has raised doubts about whether Ontario’s Ring of Fire region will ever be developed, pouring cold water on a critical minerals project that the provincial government has championed and the United States administration has expressed interest in funding.

Jeff Labonté, assistant deputy minister for lands and minerals at Natural Resources Canada, told senior leadership at the Neskantaga First Nation in a meeting on Nov. 17 that it’s possible no mines will be built in the region, and that there is no guarantee Ottawa will ever come forward with the roughly $1-billion in funding needed for development to proceed.

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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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New fund a ‘massive signal’ Ontario’s open for business: CEO – by Maija Hoggett (Timmins Today – November 24, 2022)


A company advancing a large nickel-cobalt project in Timmins is already planning its applications for a new provincial fund. Today, Minister of Mines and Timmins MPP George Pirie was at Northern College to launch the Critical Minerals Innovation Fund.

The two-year, $5-million initiative is “to support research, development and commercialization of technologies, processes and solutions for critical minerals,” said Pirie.

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The Drift: Sudbury mine developer seeks to extract untapped critical minerals – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – November 23, 2022)


Magna Mining completes acquisition of former Inco mine with growth plans afoot in the Sudbury camp

Sudbury is historically known for nickel. But there remain hundreds of millions of tonnes of overlooked and valuable mineral commodities left behind by mining activity over the decades.

An upstart mining company with ambitions to be Sudbury’s next producer is seizing on an opportunity to bring a former INCO mine back into production, possibly by the end of next year.

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Australian gold company targets growth at White River mine – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – November 17, 2022)


Silver Lake Resources invests in new buildings, processing equipment at Sugar Zone Mine

The new Australian owners of the Sugar Zone Mine continue to sink investment into the underground operation near White River.

Silver Lake Resources reported it’s made “significant progress” at the mine with expenditures of almost $9 million the company’s past September quarter. Most the spending has been on processing equipment and new buildings.

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‘It makes no sense for Canada’: Industry rebuffs idea of joining an OPEC-like alliance for nickel – by Gabriel Friedman and Naimul Karim (Financial Post – November 21, 2022)


Canada’s nickel producers are hoping to differentiate their products as cleaner and purer

Mining industry veteran Mark Selby has for years been telling anyone who would listen that the production of nickel — a metal key to batteries and the energy transition — was getting so concentrated in just a few countries that a cartel-like organization to control supply was inevitable.

A slide in the PowerPoint deck he’s shown at investment conferences since 2019 predicted an “ONEC” — the Organization for Nickel Exporting Countries — consisting of Indonesia, the Philippines and Russia, the top three nickel producers.

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Welcome to Canada, where we hesitate instead of hustle – by Heather Scoffield (Toronto Star – November 18, 2022)


When it comes to future prosperity, Canada talks fast but moves slowly, Heather Scoffield writes.

Here’s a new slogan to sum up Canada’s approach to boosting prosperity: Welcome to Canada, where we hesitate instead of hustle. Our industrial strategy, vaunted but not clearly defined. Our China policy, much hinted at but not yet published. Our critical minerals, heavily marketed but not yet mined. Our zero-carbon efforts, subsidized but not likely to remain competitive.

Those are the building blocks of not just our economic direction, but also the politics that motivate both the Conservatives and Liberals. Our leaders definitely talk a good game though.

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News Release: Vale and GM Sign Long-Term Nickel Supply Agreement in Canada Critical to North American EV Supply Chain (November 17, 2022)

TORONTO and DETROIT, Nov. 17, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Vale Canada Limited, a subsidiary of Vale S.A., and General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM), announced today they have signed a term sheet for the long-term supply of battery grade nickel sulfate from Vale’s proposed plant at Bécancour, Québec, Canada. This agreement secures for GM a supply of nickel sulfate from a U.S. free-trade partner to support its fast-growing EV production needs in North America.

Under terms of the agreement, Vale will supply battery grade nickel sulfate, equivalent to 25,000 metric tons per year of contained nickel, for use in GM’s Ultium battery cathodes, which will power a broad portfolio of electric vehicles including the Chevrolet Silverado EV, Blazer EV and Equinox EV, the Cadillac LYRIQ, the GMC Sierra EV, and the GMC HUMMER EV Pickup and SUV. The amount of contained nickel is sufficient to supply approximately 350,000 EVs annually. Deliveries are targeted to commence in the second half of 2026.

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Matawa chiefs push back against U.S. military agenda in the Ring of Fire – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – November 17, 2022)


First Nation leaders demand a big say over any industrial development on their James Bay homelands

Toronto media reports about talks between the U.S. military, mining interests and government about funding development in the Ring of Fire has angered Indigenous communities in Ontario’s Far North.

The leadership of the Matawa First Nations are asserting their sovereignty, rights and jurisdiction over their traditional territories in the mineral-rich James Bay region. Chiefs from across Ontario met this week at their fall assembly in Toronto and are lending their support.

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Some junior mining companies say they are left out from Ontario’s critical minerals strategy – by Jonathan Migneault (CBC News Sudbury – November 16, 2022)


Ontario Junior Exploration Program offers companies up to $200,000

Some junior mining companies say they haven’t benefited from Ontario’s critical minerals strategy, which aims to build a homegrown supply chain for electric vehicles and their batteries.

The strategy would connect northern Ontario’s mineral resources – which include important metals like nickel, cobalt and lithium – to battery and vehicle manufacturing in the south.

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Rock Tech drops lithium refinery plans in new Georgia Lake prefeasibility – by Colin McClelland (Northern Miner – November 16, 2022)

Global mining news

Rock Tech Lithium (TSXV: RCK) released a prefeasibility study for its Georgia Lake lithium project in northern Ontario showing lower resource grades and a reduced net present value, while dropping a plan to build a refinery.

The updated indicated resource comes to 10.6 million tonnes grading 0.88% lithium oxide, inferred resources of 4.2 million tonnes grading at 1% lithium oxide, the company announced on Wednesday. The study also included a first probable mineral reserve for Georgia Lake estimated at 7.3 million tonnes grading 0.82% lithium oxide.

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U.S. military in talks with Canadian miners for key minerals as rivalry with China grows – by Naimul Karim (Financial Post – November 16, 2022)


One of the projects on the Americans’ radar is northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire

The United States military is talking to Canadian miners about potentially funding some critical minerals projects in Canada, the latest evidence of President Joe Biden’s administration’s commitment to cutting its reliance on China for the metals needed to build defence equipment and expand the electric vehicle (EV) market.

One of those projects is in the Ring of Fire region in northern Ontario, which Premier Doug Ford’s government believes has “multi-generational potential” to produce minerals such as nickel and copper that are currently in high demand as countries look to accelerate the shift away from fossil fuels.

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First Nation strikes benefits deal with Marathon mine builder – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – November 15, 2022)


Generation Mining anticipates construction start of open-pit project in early 2023

The developers of Marathon-area open-pit project have struck a community benefits agreement (CBA) with a neighbouring First Nation on the north shore of Lake Superior.

Toronto’s Generation Mining announced Nov. 14 that the membership of Biigtigong Nishnaabeg (formerly Pic River) has approved a community benefits agreement involving the construction and environmental safeguards of the proposed Marathon Palladium-Copper Project owned by Generation PGM.

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U.S. government considering funding for Ontario’s Ring of Fire – by Naill McGee (Globe and Mail – November 15, 2022)


Ring of Fire Metals is in talks with the United States government about possibly getting funding for its critical minerals project in northern Ontario.

“We’ve had initial discussions with the U.S. Department of Defence (DOD) regarding the important role that Northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire region will play in producing the critical minerals needed by Canada and the U.S.” the company said in a statement to The Globe and Mail.

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