Archive | Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

First Nations consent and environmental impact dominate concerns at Ring of Fire demonstration on Ramsey Lake Road – by Allana McDougall (Sudbury Northern Life – September 7, 2018)

The three-hour long demonstration that took place at the intersection leading to Sudbury’s university campuses on Ramsey Lake Road stopped traffic for just three minutes.

Two round dances were scheduled to take place. One at 10 a.m. and another at 11 a.m.; only the 11 a.m. round dance occurred. Greater Sudbury Police Services was present at that time to direct right-turning traffic and to ensure the safety of those who participated. Left-turning traffic was not able to proceed.

Organizer Bruce McComber said that he’s been a part of a broad network of activists, scientists and environmentalists for almost ten years. According to him, that network has been trying to force the government and corporations to provide more thorough environmental assessments and pay better taxes, among other things. For him, opposition to the project includes acknowledgement of issues that precede development. Continue Reading →

What’s the plan for the Ring of Fire?: Exit of province’s lead negotiator has Matawa chiefs waiting on Ford government’s next move – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – September 5, 2018)

The elimination of the province’s main negotiator in the Ring of Fire consultation process has the head of a northwestern Ontario First Nation tribal council waiting on the Ford government and Northern Ontario cabinet minister Greg Rickford to make the next move.

A Toronto media report claimed Justice Frank Iacobucci was axed by the Ford government in a purge of former government officials appointed under the previous Wynne government.

Iacobucci represented the province in the Regional Framework Agreement process initiated by the Wynne government in April 2014. David Paul Achneepineskum, CEO of Matawa First Nations Management, representing the nine Matawa First Nations, had a wait-and-see response in a statement released Sept. 5. Continue Reading →

Noront continues research into Sault, Timmins – by Elaine Della-Mattia (Sault Star – August 27, 2018)

Negotiations are continuing between Noront Resources and Algoma to determine whether an agreement can be reached that would see the development of a ferrochrome facility on the steelmaker’s property.

The key now is for Noront to complete its due diligence to determine how a production facility would be situated on the Algoma property site. It also needs to determine what shared services it can cobble with Algoma and determine what the strategic advantages would be to do that.

NorOnt president and CEO Alan Coutts said both the Sault Ste. Marie and Timmins locations have really good sites and supportive municipalities. The decision will hinge on the commercial arrangement that can be negotiated with the property owners, Coutts said in a telephone interview. He said Noront has spoken to the secured creditors and that team has encouraged talks to continue with Algoma’s management team. Continue Reading →

“Ring of Fire Secretariat remains intact” – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – August 24, 2018)

Ontario Northland could have role in massive mining development, but government not saying much

A spokesman with the Ontario government anticipates no changes with the Ring of Fire Secretariat, the Crown agency charged with developing the infrastructure to reach the Far North mineral deposits.

Almost two months after a new cabinet was sworn in at Queen’s Park, there’s no indication what the Doug Ford government has in mind to “jump-start” industrial development in the James Bay lowlands, other than a bumper-sticker campaign promise to bulldoze new access roads into the remote region.

The responsibility of making it happen falls on the shoulders of Kenora MPP Greg Rickford, the Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, and Minister of Indigenous Affairs. Continue Reading →

The relationship builder: Noront vice-president Glenn Nolan is navigating the complicated relationships of the Ring of Fire – by Jax Jacobsen (CIM Magazine – August 20, 2018)

There are very few hats Glenn Nolan hasn’t worn. He has been president of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada; Chief of the Missanabie Cree; a mining exploration field agent; an entrepreneur and director of a junior mining company.

And now he’s vice-president at Noront Resources, the biggest player in the perennially stalled Ring of Fire camp, charged with navigating relations with both provincial and federal representatives as the company attempts to develop its Eagle’s Nest nickel-copper-PGE deposit. Having spent the majority of his career building relationships between industry, government and First Nations, the role is one Nolan seems perfectly made for.

“I’ve been working in this industry for over 40 years,” Nolan said. “I’ve been very fortunate to have these many opportunities, as Indigenous people don’t have a large depth of experience” in the sector. Continue Reading →

Collecting labour force information and conducting skills assessments are key to ensuring Indigenous communities take full advantage of northern mining jobs.- by Daniel Bland (Policy Options – July 30, 2018)

Daniel Bland is an adult educator who works with Cree Human Resources Development (CHRD) on the design and delivery of training to employment and work readiness programs in James Bay Cree communities.

As mining and resource extraction companies across the North continue to ride out a worldwide slump in commodity prices, there are several things that Matawa and other remote First Nations close to large mineral deposits in Ontario could be doing to maximize the benefits that will eventually come their way once mining operations begin in earnest.

Considerable attention has been paid to the labour market demands of the mining projects in the chromite, nickel and copper mineral belt known as the Ring of Fire.

Much less attention has been given to developing an employability profile of the residents of the nine Matawa First Nations in the area, about 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay. These residents are expected to supply much of the labour force needed to meet those demands. Continue Reading →

Competition stays hot for Ring of Fire processing plant – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – July 26, 2018)

Noront Resources boss offers insight into ferrochrome facility selection process

Alan Coutts is dragging out the suspense to find a Northern Ontario home for a Ring of Fire ferrochrome production plant for just a few more months.

The president-CEO of Noront Resources wants to keep the competitive process going to get the best deal possible to place the Toronto mine developer’s $1-billion smelter project in either Sault Ste. Marie or Timmins.

Instead of announcing a landing spot for its plant this summer, the company decided to drop Sudbury and Thunder Bay from its four-city bidding process, and is punting its final decision toward the end of this year. Continue Reading →

Sault claims political edge in bid for Noront plant – by Elaine Della-Matti (Sault Star/Timmins Daily Press – July 24, 2018)

SAULT STE. MARIE – All hands on deck. That’s the message Sault Ste. Marie politicians are sending to Noront Resources as the city is one of two communities shortlisted for a ferrochrome facility.

The other is Timmins. While the next step is up to Noront and Algoma to reach a contractual agreement or memorandum of understanding detailing how the two companies would work together, politicians are offering their support to the parties.

An agreement between the two companies will need to outline commercial terms and conditions as well as services Noront and Algoma could potentially share or participate in. Continue Reading →

Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins mayors on being shortlisted for Noront ferrochrome smelter (CBC News Canada – July 19, 2019)

Two northern cities now squaring off to lure billion dollar investment

Two small northern cities, one billion-dollar investment. That’s how mayors from Sault Ste. Marie and TImmins are looking at it, after mining giant Noront Resources announced the location of its proposed ferrochrome smelter would be one of the two cities.

Earlier in July, Sudbury and Thunder Bay were eliminated from the hunt. Timmins Mayor Steve Black is confident his city shows well. The proposed location is the Kidd Metallurgical Site, an active site currently used for concentrate.

He also understands what his city has to gain if Noront selects Timmins. “I think everyone has made it aware that it’s a game changer,” Black told CBC’s Up North. “It’s several hundred jobs for several decades ahead.” Continue Reading →

Prospectors weigh impact of cancelled Eabametoong drilling permit – by Staff ( – July 18, 2018)

Government statement says the decision’s implications are under review

THUNDER BAY — An official with the Ontario Prospectors Association hopes the quashing of a mining company’s permit to explore for gold near Eabametoong First Nation causes the newly-elected PC government to “revamp the system.”

The Divisional Court revoked Landore Resources’ permit on the grounds the Ministry of Northern Development & Mines and the company had inadequately consulted the Indigenous people who fish, hunt and trap in the area.

OPA Executive-Director Garry Clark said the previous Liberal government “did take some ownership on the consultation process…but I guess they didn’t go far enough. I guess somewhere within the ministry’s legal advice, there’s a problem. They need to get themselves up to speed with what the lawmakers want.” Continue Reading →

Ontario court quashes gold mining permit over lack of meaningful consultation with First Nation – by Jorge Barrera (CBC News Indigenous – July 17, 2018)

Court says company’s potential Barrick deal drove ministry’s decision to issue exploration permit

A ruling issued Monday by the Ontario Superior Court quashing a gold exploration permit should send a message to the new Doug Ford government that it can’t “bulldoze” its way into the mineral-rich Ring of Fire development, says the chief of Eabametoong First Nation.

The Ontario Superior Court said in the ruling that the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, under the previous Liberal administration, failed to properly consult with Eabametoong First Nation before it granted a gold mining permit to Landore Resources Canada, a subsidiary of U.K.-based Landore Resources Ltd.

The court found that the ministry “changed course without any explanation” to the First Nation and issued the permit to ensure Landore had it in hand for talks on a potential deal with gold mining behemoth Barrick Gold Corporation. Continue Reading →

A sustainable plan for Ontario’s Ring of Fire – by Cheryl Chetkiewicz, Justina Ray, Richard Lindgren (Policy Options – July 17, 2018)

Cheryl Chetkiewicz, PhD, is a conservation scientist at Wildlife Conservation Society Canada. Justina Ray, PhD, is president and senior scientist at Wildlife Conservation Society Canada. Richard Lindgren is a staff lawyer with the Canadian Environmental Law Association and represents citizens’ groups on environmental issues.

Newly elected Premier Doug Ford has declared that resource development within northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire mining area will be a priority for his government. However, from an environmental planning and First Nations perspective, this may be more easily said than done.

Mineral deposits in the Ring of Fire lie beneath globally significant carbon-rich peat lands in the Far North of Ontario. The enormous economic potential of the chromite and nickel deposits has sustained industry and government buzz since these deposits were discovered over a decade ago.

While there has been intensive exploration and some limited impact-assessment work, little progress in developing these deposits has occurred to date. Continue Reading →

Mayor optimistic after Timmins makes Noront shortlist – by Len Gillis (Timmins Daily Press – July 17, 2018)

TIMMINS – Timmins Mayor Steve Black said he is confident and optimistic that Timmins is still offering the best possible solution for Noront Resources Inc. in its bid to find a new ferrochrome processing facility. It was only Friday that Noront revealed that Timmins was one of two communities that made the new shortlist for consideration for a new facility.

Timmins had been one of four Northern Ontario cities in the running as a possible site for Noront’s future plans. Noront is the company with the largest area of active mining claims in the Ring of Fire area, which is touted to have $50-billion worth of chromite, nickel and other valuable minerals.

While the mining prospect is still a few years away from development, Noront has been actively seeking a Northern Ontario community where a ferrochrome facility could be located. Timmins, Thunder Bay, Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie were all being considered. Continue Reading →

Sault, Timmins still in hunt for smelter – by Brian Kelly (Sault Star/Sudbury Star – July 14, 2018)

Sault Ste. Marie is one of two Northern Ontario communities still being considered for Noront’s ferrochrome processing facility. The company announced late Friday afternoon Sudbury and Thunder Bay are no longer prospective locations.

Timmins also remains a candidate for a project that’s expected to create 300 to 500 direct and 1,000 indirect jobs. “I think we just need to keep working and recognize that this is a process,” Mayor Christian Provenzano told The Sault Star on Friday. “It’s quite a lengthy process. We will just keep focused on it and we will keep doing our best to encourage business to locate to Sault Ste. Marie.”

The final phase of Noront’s site selection process, now underway, centres on “substantial negotiations” with owners of the two favoured sites. In the Sault, that’s Algoma. Continue Reading →

Noront shortlists Sault and Timmins as potential sites for ferrochrome smelter – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – July 13, 2018)

Noront Resources has narrowed its search for a Northern Ontario host community for a future $1-billion ferrochrome smelter to Sault Ste. Marie and Timmins.

Thunder Bay and Sudbury have been removed from consideration for a ferrochrome production facility, the company announced late on the afternoon of July 13. The four Northern Ontario cities submitted their bids early last February.

Noront employed Hatch Engineering to help them with the evaluation process based on environmental and site suitability, capital costs, operating costs and an assessment of community acceptance of hosting the facility. Continue Reading →