Archive | Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Can’t compare smelters, Sudbury crowd told – by Mary Katherine Keown (Sudbury Star – March 23, 2018)

There are pros and cons to hosting the chromite smelter in Coniston and Tom Price wants to make sure residents understand the differences between the Nickel City and Tornio, Finland, which is home to the Outokumpu ferrochrome production facility.

Price, a retired engineering technologist with decades of experience at Vale who helped set up the world’s first chrome recycling plant in Pennsylvania, hosted a presentation at the Lexington Hotel on Wednesday aimed at educating the public on some of his chromite concerns.

Several dozen people turned out to hear him present on the proposed smelter and Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini said the meeting was organized after several people reached out to him to express their apprehensions. The major problem, Price said, is that Tornio and Coniston cannot be compared. There are 2,500 people living within 2.5 km of the proposed site in Coniston, while in Tornio, there are no people inside that radius. Continue Reading →

Will the Ring of Fire’s ferrochrome smelter end up in the Michigan Soo? – by David Helwig (Soo Today – March 21, 2018)

Ontario Sault politicians are scratching their heads over a meeting planned next month in Toronto to announce a potential ferrochrome processing plant in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

At the Civic Centre tonight, a half-dozen city councillors told SooToday they had absolutely no knowledge of the Apr. 5 gathering at the swank Design Exchange museum, located in Toronto’s original stock exchange building at 234 Bay St.

“The Ring of Fire Limited Partnership cordially invites you to join Doug Ford, leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party; with the Honourable Maxime Bernier opposition critic for innovation, science and economic development; and Jason Gauthier of the Missinabie Cree First Nation to review the virtues of making ferrochrome in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan for a new North American stainless steel joint-venture with Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario,” said the invitation. Continue Reading →

U.S. role in Ring of Fire proposed by KWG Resources – by Elaine Della-Mattia (Sault Star/Sudbury Star – March 22, 2018)

A company with a stake in the Ring of Fire says the way to get the far north development to “come alive” is by doing business with the United States.

KWG Resources president Frank Smeenk told Postmedia that it’s time to look at the political realities of today and the future and the regulatory environments and what it all means to the massive mining development for the Ring of Fire.

KWG Resources is a mining exploration company with some land claim rights in the Ring of Fire. It wants to ensure that the mineral deposits extracted from the Ring of Fire — expected to last 100 years — are not subject to political whims in the future. Smeenk said his plan is to advance his ideas and concepts to supporters at an event to be held in Toronto on April 5. Continue Reading →

Doug Ford tells supporters he can ‘take back’ Ontario from Liberals – by Maija Kappler (Globe and Mail – March 19, 2018)

He also vowed to take advantage of lucrative natural resources
in northern Ontario. Proposed mining projects in the province’s
“Ring of Fire” will take place even “if I have to hop on a bulldozer myself,” he said.

Doug Ford told a group of nearly 2,000 supporters that he plans to “take back this province” at his first major event since he was made leader of the Progressive Conservative party earlier this month.

Addressing a large and enthusiastic crowd at a rally in Toronto on Monday night, Ford said he believes he can build a majority government because Ontario voters are united in their dislike of Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne.

Ford positioned his party as one that will attract voters who have previously been loyal Liberal or NDP supporters. “It’s not about being red or being blue, it’s about turning this province around,” he said. Continue Reading →

Progressive Conservatives outline plan for northern Ontario (CBC News Sudbury – March 16, 2018)

Ford says Ring of Fire project comparable to Alberta oilsands

The leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party is promising to move the Ring of Fire mining project forward immediately if elected. Doug Ford and Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli outlined the party’s plan for northern Ontario on Friday.

Ford was voted as the head of the party last weekend, after former leader Patrick Brown stepped down amid sexual misconduct allegations.

Ford is promising to develop infrastructure to access the remote mining area in the James Bay lowlands. “If I have to hop on that bulldozer myself with Vic on the other one, we’re going to start building the roads to get to the mining,” he said. Continue Reading →

Could the road, railway to the Ring of Fire be built by foreign workers? – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – March 14, 2018)

Union warns Trans-Pacific trade deal potentially undermines Canadian contractors, tradespeople on big resource projects

A union representing heavy equipment operators claims the Trans-Pacific Partnership opens the door to an influx of temporary foreign workers that will cost jobs in Canada.

The International Union of Operating Engineers said a loophole in the trade deal signed by the Canadian government this month could take wages offshore and stands to undermine the Canadian economy.

“By signing this deal, the Liberals are failing to protect construction workers in this country,” said Mike Gallagher, business manager of Local 793 in Oakville, representing nearly 15,000 crane and heavy equipment operators across Ontario. Continue Reading →

Beware hexavalent chromium and the many ifs of the Coniston smelter – by Mark Gentili (Sudbury Northern Life – March 8, 2018)

Mark Gentili is the editor of Northern Life and

If the Ring of Fire development happens this lifetime … if the chromite market doesn’t tank … if Noront Resources isn’t bought out by a bigger miner … if Coniston is selected as the site for a chromite smelter … if, if, if.

There are a lot of ifs when it comes to the city’s bid to host a ferrochrome processing facility (a.k.a. a smelter) on the site of the old Inco smelter in Coniston. These ifs aside, what appears to be a relatively small group of opponents have already taken up the fight against the project.

I’m not criticizing people for holding the city to account and expressing an opinion — far from it. I’m all for having an engaged citizenry, willing to stand up for what it believes in. That’s democracy. No, that’s not what I’m writing about. Today (again) I want to talk about Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini. Continue Reading →

City confident in community’s support for Noront bid – by Len Gillis (Timmins Daily Press – March 8, 2018)

TIMMINS – While some opposition has emerged in other communities to the proposal by Noront Resources Inc. to create a new chromite ore processing facility in Northern Ontario, Timmins Mayor Steve Black is confident about the solid support from this city.

Noront, a junior mining exploration company, is the leading player in the Ring of Fire mining development and is looking at possible future sites for a chromite refinery in Northern Ontario.

Timmins is one of four Northern Ontario cities that have responded to a call for proposals from Noront. Other cities include Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie and Thunder Bay. All the bids were submitted in February and are currently being reviewed. Continue Reading →

Chromite critics warn element ‘very toxic’ – by Mary Katherine Keown (Sudbury Star – March 5, 2018)

Despite a ringing endorsement from city council for a Noront ferrochrome processing plant, some stakeholders are expressing concern over the safety of the smelter and its impacts on human health.

Mayor Brian Bigger travelled to Europe earlier this year to check out the Outokumpu ferrochrome production facility in Tornio, Finland. Following his visit, the mayor said he has no concerns about the safety or health impacts of an arc furnace.

“I have no concerns,” Bigger said in February. “That’s the level of confidence I wanted to come back with, with the entire team. We asked questions of all of the people we met, looking for any concerns whatsoever on their part. We found none. On my part, I have full confidence in welcoming a ferrochrome facility into our community. I think it’ll go well with our plans to diversify our economy and attract investment to create jobs. It fits in with the long-term strategy of growing our community.” Continue Reading →

City has a lot to offer to Noront workers – by Robert Kirwan (Sudbury Star – February 26, 2018)

Robert Kirwan is the city councillor for Ward 5.

The City of Greater Sudbury has submitted a compelling bid to host the proposed Noront Resources ferrochrome production facility. Noront will consider other proposals from Timmins, Thunder Bay and Sault Ste. Marie in addition to the Sudbury bid.

Since Greater Sudbury is recognized as one of the global leaders in the mining and mining supply and services industry, we should be considered as a frontrunner in this competition for the billion-dollar plant that comes with about 350 permanent jobs and about 150 indirect jobs within the community. The city is proposing that the optimal location for the plant is the former Inco’s Coniston smelter site, which is already zoned and suitable for the facility.

Noront has indicated that it will only select a city where it knows it is welcome. A survey conducted recently showed that 77 per cent of the people polled support the construction of the facility. Continue Reading →

No social license for Coniston smelter – by Steve May (Sudbury Star – February 25, 2018)

City officials dropped a bombshell on the community of Coniston earlier this month when, through a press release, Mayor Brian Bigger announced that Greater Sudbury had selected the small community as the preferred location for Noront Resources’ ferrochrome smelter.

Almost immediately, officials were scrambling to provide information to stunned Conistonians. Coun. Deb McIntosh, whose ward includes Coniston, hastily arranged a public meeting for the following week. Mayor Bigger, fresh from his tour of the Outokumpu ferrochrome facility in Finland, did the rounds with local media to assure the public that there is nothing to worry about when it comes to ferrochrome.

It all looked and sounded like damage control. Almost overnight, Conistonians, fearful of the impacts that a new smelter will have on their community, were provoked into action. A website was registered – – and content about the potentially harmful effects of chromite processing was being shared around the community via social media. Continue Reading →

[Ontario Mining] Digging into mining investment growth – by Kenneth Green and Ashley Stedman (Troy Media – February 22, 2018)

Kenneth Green and Ashley Stedman are the co-authors of the Fraser Institute’s 2017 Survey of Mining Companies.

Ontario has received some good news from mining investors. Those investors now see the province as one of the top 10 most attractive regions for mining investment worldwide, according to the Fraser Institute’s annual survey of mining companies.

Every year, the institute surveys miners around the world to determine which jurisdictions are attractive – or unattractive – for investment, based on policies and geology. The survey spotlights policies (taxes, duplicative regulations, availability of labour and skills, etc.) that govern the mining industry and impact the investment attractiveness of jurisdictions.

This year, Ontario sits seventh in the world rankings, up from 18th last year. What’s behind Ontario’s rise? Less uncertainty around disputed land claims and protected areas. Continue Reading →

No open pit mines for the Ring of Fire: Noront wants to keep a low mine profile in the James Bay region – by Ian Ross – Northern Ontario Busniess – February 16, 2018)

Noront Resources doesn’t intend to dig open-pit mines in the James Bay lowlands even though the abundance and the proximity of the rich chromite ore bodies to surface might dictate otherwise.

“It’s a natural ore body for open-pit mining,” said Noront president-CEO Allan Coutts during the Great Sudbury Chamber of Commerce’s Procurement, Employment and Partnerships Conference on Feb. 6.

“However we’ve said quite categorically, we’re not going to approach it as an open pit.” As the largest landholder in the Ring of Fire, Coutts said the thickness of their string of chromite deposits range between 10 and 30 metres, and come right to surface. Continue Reading →

Noront sees some light from the Ring of Fire – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – February 8, 2018)

Mine developer pleased First Nation partnership, government getting traction on access road

What a difference a year makes. Early last year, Noront Resources president-CEO Alan Coutts delivered a doom-and-gloom speech to a Sudbury crowd that cast doubt about whether the Toronto mine developer even saw a future in the Ring of Fire.

There was frustration over government inaction in planning an access road to reach the isolated James Bay mineral deposits, the glacial pace of dialogue with First Nation communities with the Regional Framework talks seemed to be going nowhere, and Coutts was dropping hints that the project could be shelved if the company’s financial backers weren’t seeing progress.

This time, an upbeat Coutts was striking a more optimistic tone as the featured headliner at the Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce’s Procurement, Employment and Partnerships Conference on Feb. 6. Continue Reading →

Ebametoong First Nation Set for Court with Ontario Government – by Amanda Perreault ( – February 6, 2018)

EABAMETOONG FIRST NATION – “The Keezhik and Miminiska Lakes areas are very special and important cultural areas for a large number of our members… As EFN, we recognize these family groups as being the stewards of these lands because they live there or spend seasons out on the land exercising their rights. They have always been part of that land.

As we have heard throughout community meetings on this issue, there are burial grounds, birthplaces, cabins used by our families, sensitive spawning areas, and rich hunting grounds throughout the area staked by Landore,” states Eabametoong First Nation Chief Elizabeth Atlookan.

The uncertain future of a pristine area of Northern Ontario will be argued before three judges in Toronto on February 7-8th. Despite concerns raised by community members about impacts to the environment and Aboriginal and Treaty rights, in March 2016 Ontario’s Ministry of Northern Development and Mines issued mineral exploration permits to Landore Resources Inc. to drill for gold throughout a culturally and environmentally sensitive area. Continue Reading →