Archive | Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Groups ask for pause to Ring of Fire work until plans in place for clean water, peatlands – by Carl Meyer (National Observer – March 2, 2021)

A coalition of Indigenous and environmental organizations is calling on the Canadian and Ontario governments to impose an “immediate moratorium” on all mineral exploration or impact assessment work related to the Ring of Fire region.

A dozen organizations, including the Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA) and the Omushkegowuk Women’s Water Council (OWWC), have penned an open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson and provincial leaders asking for the pause.

Ontario’s Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines believes the Ring of Fire region in the province’s north has valuable deposits of several minerals, including chromite, which can be used to make stainless steel. Ontario Premier Doug Ford has labelled it a “multibillion-dollar opportunity.” Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Memorandum of Understanding signed by Webequie First Nation and Juno Corp.(March 1, 2021)

First Nation advances economic participation interests in Ring of Fire project developments.

WEBEQUIE FIRST NATION, ON, March 1, 2021 /CNW/ – Webequie First Nation and Juno Corp. have announced a new cooperation agreement to foster economic participation opportunities and advance exploration and potential mining partnerships in Northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire.

This first Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on February 24th in Webequie First Nation between Chief Cornelius Wabasse and Juno Corp.’s President & COO, Jacob McKinnon.

Chief Wabasse of Webequie First Nation said, “This MoU is an economic milestone for our First Nation members. We are a community that believes in self-determination and pursuing collaborative alliances with the right government and business partners. This MoU brings us one step closer to securing new employment, training, business prospects and ongoing consultations as mining develops in our traditional territory.” Continue Reading →

Environmental opposition to the Ring of Fire is growing – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – February 25, 2021)

Toronto environmental law group joins voices calling for protection of Far North wetlands

A Toronto-based legal group is throwing its support behind the opposition to development in the Ring of Fire mineral belt.

The Canadian Environmental Law Association (CELA), whose clients are the Friends of the Attawapiskat River, is calling for an immediate moratorium on all mineral exploration and all mine-related development, including a halt to the environmental assessments underway for the proposed community, supply, and ore-haul access roads.

They’re throwing their support behind Mushkegowuk Council and Neskantaga First Nation that a protection plan must be put in place first – safeguarding wetland and watersheds in the Far North and respecting Indigenous rights – before any further action takes place. Continue Reading →

A road to the Ring of Fire is ‘everything.’ Railway? Not so much – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – February 22, 2021)

Noront Resources exploration boss digs into the details of the 2021 exploration year

The mineral endowment in the Ring of Fire appears to be vast, deep, rich and long-lasting.

As compelling as the geological picture is of the world-class base and precious metal deposits in the Far North exploration camp, 500 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, all anyone wants to talk about is, what’s happening with the access roads?

It’s a topic of discussion too with Noront Resources, the leading mine developer in the James Bay lowlands. “The road is everything,” said Ryan Weston, the company’s vice-president of exploration, at a recent web gathering of the Sudbury Prospectors and Developers Association.

“Without the road there’s no Ring of Fire development, which means there’s no exploration.” Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Thunder Bay, the next mining powerhouse: CEDC releases the 2020 Mining Readiness Strategy (February 9, 2021)

Click for the report:

February 9, 2021 – Today, the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission released a Mining Readiness Strategy. The study outlines significant regional economic growth in the next 10 years due to 6 currently operating mines and 15 major exploration projects as they advance into operation.

Thunder Bay’s proximity to the active mines, exploration projects, critical minerals, workforce training abilities, service and supply businesses, and available land all play an essential role in being the mining hub for Northwestern Ontario.

“The exploration and mining industry, led by gold, palladium and lithium projects, will be a growing economic driver for Thunder Bay and Northwestern Ontario,” states John Mason, Project Manager, Mining Services, Thunder Bay CEDC. “The Mining Readiness Strategy will be an important tool to maximize benefit.”

The Mining Readiness Strategy highlights significant benefits to Thunder Bay, such as: Continue Reading →

KWG forging ahead with Ring of Fire railroad – by Jim Moodie (Sudbury Star – February 7, 2021)

Capreol native and veteran railroader Tony Marquis came out of retirement to take on a project he believes could “give a real kickstart to rail in Northern Ontario.”

Marquis is now in charge of constructing a rail route to the Ring of Fire, as newly appointed head of Canada Chrome Corporation, a subsidiary of KWG Resources.

“When KWG spawned this new company they staked claims from the Ring of Fire to an area just outside of Nakina, by the Aroland First Nation,” said Marquis. “The claims are on an esker that basically comes straight down, so that’s how the railroad would be built, right upon the esker.” Continue Reading →

Federal consultation period being extended for Ring of Fire assessment process – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – February 2, 2021)

Ottawa is following Queen’s Park lead in allowing more time for locked-down remote Indigenous communities to express their comments and concerns on the potential impact of mining in the Far North.

The Impact Assessment Agency of Canada (IAAC) is extending the commenting period beyond the original Jan. 21 deadline to allow the public, Indigenous communities and other organizations to provide input on shaping the terms of reference surrounding the federal Regional Assessment of the Ring of Fire area in the James Bay region.

No new deadline for taking comments has yet been posted on the IAAC’s project home page. Due to pandemic-related meeting and travel restrictions, “the agency will be providing further opportunities to contribute to the planning of the Regional Assessment in the Ring of Fire area, including to the terms of reference,” the IAAC said in an email to Northern Ontario Business. Continue Reading →

First Nations select engineering firms to do Ring of Fire road environmental assessment – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – January 28, 2021)

Province agrees to extend consultation deadline on road projects to accommodate First Nations

Two heavyweight consulting firms have been selected to do the environmental assessment (EA) studies for the most second leg of the proposed Ring of Fire road, from Marten Falls to Webequie.

SNC-Lavalin and Dillon Consulting were selected through a competitive bid process announced in a joint news release by Marten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation, the two community road proponents, on Jan. 28.

Dubbed the Northern Road Link, the proposed 200-kilometre-long road would run from just west of Marten Falls north to connect to the 107-kilometre Webequie Supply Road. The latter road runs east from the Webequie Airport to the McFaulds Lake area where exploration activity is taking place. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Marten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation Select SNC Lavalin and Dillon Consulting to Conduct Environmental Assessment for the Northern Road Link (January 28, 2021)

THUNDER BAY, ON, Jan. 28, 2021 /CNW/ – Marten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation are taking the necessary next steps to study the potential for road infrastructure development in Ontario’s remote north. The two First Nations today announced that SNC-Lavalin and Dillon Consulting have been selected to complete an Environmental Assessment on a proposed all-season road that will link the two remote First Nations and connect to emerging mining sites in the Ring of Fire area.

Says Chief Cornelius Wabasse of Webequie First Nation; “Following a competitive RFP process, our First Nations have awarded the contract for the Northern Road Link’s Environmental Assessment to SNC-Lavalin and Dillon Consulting.

The proposed Northern Road Link is a highly sensitive project that requires the most rigorous studies related to environmental, water, climate change, and cumulative effects. Given their previous studies done in Ontario Far North, SNC-Lavalin and Dillon Consulting are familiar with community principles when it comes to economic development, and we look forward to working collaboratively to generate the EA information to make an informed decision.” Continue Reading →

Queen’s Park moving too fast for Matawa chiefs on Far North Act repeal – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – January 18, 2021)

Three First Nation chiefs contend COVID-19 and the safety of their communities are more pressing issues right now than Premier Doug Ford’s legislative agenda to develop the Far North.

Marten Falls’ Bruce Achneepineskum, Webequie’s Cornelius Wabasse and Eabametoong’s Harvey Yesno are rejecting the province’s Jan. 14 deadline for taking comments on coming revisions to the Far North Act.

In a joint statement last week, the chiefs said despite the outbreak of the pandemic last March, the Queen’s Park bureaucracy has pressed on with legislative, policy and regulatory changes that put the interests of government, industry and investors ahead of the area communities. Continue Reading →


Thunder Bay, ON: – Following the declaration of Premier of Ontario Doug Ford on Tuesday January 12, 2021 of a second state of emergency across the province of Ontario due to the COVID-19 crisis, the Matawa Chiefs Council are issuing a public statement that the Matawa Chiefs Council reject the Ontario government-imposed deadline of Thursday January 14, 2021 for comments related to Ontario’s proposed revisions of the Far North Act, 2010 and demand that the Premier of Ontario and the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry Hon. John Yakabuski halt the inappropriate and continued attempts of the Ontario government to proceed with engagement activities on legislation impacting the Inherent Aboriginal and Treaty Rights of First Nations at this time.

The Matawa Chiefs Council requests that the Government of Ontario cease all activities that impact the rights and interests of the Matawa member First Nations until after the COVID-19 pandemic is over. Continue Reading →

Mushkegowuk chiefs call for moratorium on development within Ring of Fire (Timmins Daily Press – January 12, 2021)

Chiefs say development activities should be halted until plans are in place to “ensure sensitive wetlands and watersheds are protected”

Mushkegowuk Council chiefs are calling for a moratorium on development in the Ring of Fire until there are studies and plans in place that will ensure mining operations will have no environmental or ecological impact on traditional lands.

They want a moratorium until a “proper protection plan through a comprehensive study based on best science and traditional ecological data” is implemented.

The focus of any study would include major rivers such as the Attawapiskat, Albany, Ekwan and Winisk and thousands of streams that flow into the Hudson Bay and James Bay. Continue Reading →

Mayor sees economic prospects for Timmins in 2021 – by Andrew Autio (Timmins Daily Press – January 1, 2021)

While every calendar year has its own trials and tribulations, the year 2020 was a particularly challenging one, and is unlikely to be remembered fondly by most people.

Timmins Mayor George Pirie has seen many ups and downs this year, but he feels there is some positive momentum heading into 2021. As he reflects back to this time one year ago, the COVID-19 pandemic, which would soon become all-encompassing, was in its early stages of development.

“I don’t think anybody really understood what this virus is all about,” said Pirie. He said city officials saw what was happening in Asia, Italy and other early hotspots and had their fingers crossed the spread wouldn’t reach North America, Canada and Northern Ontario. Continue Reading →

Growing pressure from northern Ontario First Nations forces feds to extend Ring of Fire consultations – by Logan Turner (CBC News Thunder Bay – December 17, 2020)

At least six First Nations in the region sent letters to federal Impact Assessment Agency demanding more time

With pressure growing on the relatively new Impact Assessment Agency of Canada to delay consultation on the regional impact assessment in the Ring of Fire mineral development region in northern Ontario, the federal government has relented and offered more time and support for First Nations to participate in the process.

That decision came after a letter was sent to the agency on Dec. 10 that was jointly signed by the chiefs of five First Nations in northern Ontario asking for the deadline of Jan. 21, 2021, to be pushed back because of capacity issues related to the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the letter, the chiefs wrote, “we do not want the [regional assessment] to start off on a track that is short and leads to dead ends; that does not make full use of the opportunity presented here and ends up being mere window dressing.” Continue Reading →

Thunder Bay: Northern Road Link to Ring of Fire getting ready for environmental assessment, but not everyone is on board – by Logan Turner (CBC News Thunder Bay – December 14, 2020)

Marten Falls and Webequie First Nations signed agreement with Ontario on Oct. 28 to move project forward

A third all-season road connecting the Ring of Fire to the provincial highway network is set to take its next step towards completing a necessary environmental assessment, but some in the region are not happy that the project is moving forward during the pandemic.

Shortly before COVID-19 upended daily life as Canadians know it, the Ontario government announced an agreement with the Marten Falls and Webequie First Nations to advance the planning and development of the Northern Road Link.

The proposed road would connect two other all-season roads under development, the Marten Falls Community Access road and the Webequie Supply Road. Continue Reading →