Archive | Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Rails to Riches in the Ring of Fire – by Edgar J. Lavoie

This article was orginally published in Northern Ontario Business on April 19, 2010. Established in 1980, Northern Ontario Business provides Canadians and international investers with relevant, current and insightful editorial content and business news information about Ontario’s vibrant and resource-rich North.

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

A man from North Carolina is standing on the north bank of the frozen Ogoki River in Northern Ontario. His job is to find bedrock that could support a bridge foundation for a Class 3 heavy-haul railway. The railway, currently under feasibility review, would transport 4 million tonnes of chromite every year from the Ring of Fire to the CN mainline near Nakina.

On Feb. 19, Colin Langford, geologist, is overdressed for the weather -2C. The sun is shining, the sky is clear. As the crew extracts two-inch rock core from the drill hole, Langford identifies the rock. “Granite,” he says. Good solid stuff.

Matthew Krzewinski, field program manager for Golder Associates, has dropped from the sky to check on the work. A helicopter is the transport of choice in this country. The company is performing geotechnical drilling on the proposed route.

Only a third of the 340-kilometre route runs through the rock, sand, and gravel of the Canadian Shield. The James Bay Lowlands, in which the Big Daddy chromite discovery is located, is wet – a wilderness of lakes and bogs. KWG Resources Inc. (TSX-V: KWG), in joint venture with Spider Resources Inc. (TSX-V: SPQ), created a subsidiary to do feasibility studies for a railway. In turn, Canada Chrome Corp. engaged Krech Ojard & Associates, PA, of Duluth, who hired Golder Associates, also of Duluth, with support from offices throughout Canada and the USA.

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Ring of Fire: A Chance to Remake, or Ruin, the North – by Tanya Talaga [Toronto Star-March 27, 2010]

Tanya Talaga is the Queen’s Park (Ontario Provincial Government) reporter for the Toronto Star, which has the largest circulation in Canada. The paper has an enormous impact on Canada’s federal and provincial politics as well as shaping public opinion. This article was originally published on Saturday, March 27, 2010 on the front page of the Insight section.

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

A massive ore deposit has prospectors drooling, native groups worried about a raw deal and greens warning of an ecological disaster. With $30 billion at stake, the government is struggling to strike the right balance

MARTEN FALLS FIRST NATION, ONT.–Children sprint into the school gym to feast on the grapes, apples and oranges laid out on long tables – the first fresh fruit they’ve seen in months.

The fruit, all 90 kilos of it, is a gift to the 300 people living in this impoverished, fly-in-only reserve from Northern Development Minister Michael Gravelle.

He’s flown to Marten Falls, where the water is not clean enough to drink, on a diplomatic mission to soothe tensions among the Indians, government and mining companies over the proposed development of the Ring of Fire.

The Ring is a massive, 5,120-square-kilometre area of pristine wilderness that happens to be on Marten Falls’ traditional land and is said to hold one of the richest ore deposits in the world.

The buzz around the potential jackpot has prospectors jockeying for position as everyone lines up to stake their claim in this modern-day gold rush. Continue Reading →

Northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire, Ring of Fire – by David Robinson

Dr. David Robinson is an economist at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Canada. His column was originally published in May 2010 issue of Sudbury Mining Solutions Journal a magazine that showcases the mining expertise of North Bay, Timmins and Sudbury.  [email protected]

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

One way to get attention in the mining world is to mention the Ring of Fire. Apparently, it doesn’t matter whether your column is really about the Ring of Fire. Just mention this new wonder of the world and you get noticed.

I am far too proud to use such a sleazy technique, but the Ring of Fire (three mentions so far) is an enormous opportunity for the mining supply and services sector.  In fact, the Ring of Fire offers a chance to move Northern Ontario’s mining supply and services sector to a new level.

Cliffs Natural Resources intends to process as much as 800,000 tons of chromite annually, which would place the company in fifth place among producing countries – between Russia and Brazil. Production at that rate could continue for a hundred years. At 2007 prices, the annual value would exceed $250 million. Current prices are lower but expected to rise as demand for stainless steel surges.

For the province, developing the Ring of Fire will produce a huge building boom. It will provide jobs for miners and for the 1,200 people in three small First Nation communities: Webequie, Neskantaga and Marten Falls.  Since these are fly-in communities, the new mines will have to pay for all-weather roads and a rail line. Continue Reading →

Ontario Premier McGuinty Welcomes U.S. to OUR Ring of Fire – by Gregory Reynolds (Part 2 of 2)

This column was originally published in the Spring, 2010 issue of Highgrader Magazine which is committed to serve the interests of northerners by bringing the issues, concerns and culture of the north to the world through the writings and art of award-winning journalists as well as talented freelance artists, writers and photographers.

Gregory Reynolds is a Timmins, Canada-based columnist who writes extensively about mining and northern Ontario issues.

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Using a subsidiary of KWG Resources, Canadian Chrome Corporation, (Cliffs had quietly became KWG’s principal shareholder before the project leaked out in a one paragraph item in a monthly magazine in September 2009) Cliffs was able to avoid publicity.

What people should be asking McGuinty is two things: when did he become aware of the project and more importantly, what did he promise Cliffs to get it to commit to a project where native groups were likely to block it for many years, perhaps decades?

Cliff has said it expects to put the $800-million mine into production by 2015. It plans to spend $10 million this year on the project.

The original plan was to have Cliff’s railway link up with the Canadian National Railway main line and transport ore to Thunder Bay where a smelter and electric arc furnace complex would be built.

The 400,000 to 800,000 tonnes of ferrochrome produced per year would be shipped to U.S. steel companies.

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Ontario Premier McGuinty Welcomes U.S. to OUR Ring of Fire – by Gregory Reynolds (Part 1 of 2)

This column was originally published in the Spring, 2010 issue of Highgrader Magazine which is committed to serve the interests of northerners by bringing the issues, concerns and culture of the north to the world through the writings and art of award-winning journalists as well as talented freelance artists, writers and photographers.

Gregory Reynolds is a Timmins, Canada-based columnist who writes extensively about mining and northern Ontario issues.

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty is a man whose word is worthless. There is no question about his string of broken promises; as a politician, he considers his word merely another election tool.

Thus the question to be considered is this: Was he being dishonest in 2008 when he promised to freeze all development, that mainly being mining and forestry projects, in a 225,000 square km swathe of the Boreal Forest; Or was he being dishonest on March 8 this year when he put a promise to allow development of the Ring of Fire into his government’s Throne Speech?

The Ring of Fire is located about 500 km northeast of Thunder Bay and about 100 km directly west of the De Beers Victor diamond mine in the James Bay Lowlands. It is in the middle of the Northern Boreal Forest.

The Ring is believed to be a huge basin, perhaps created by an asteroid, even bigger at 5,120 square km than the fabled Sudbury Nickel Basin.

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PDAC 2010 – Ring of Fire and the Rebirth of Ontario Mining – by Stan Sudol

(L to R) FNX Mining Company Inc. Chairman and CEO Terry McGibbon and Laurentian University President Dominic Giroux

Stan Sudol is a Toronto-based communications consultant, who writes extensively about mining issues.([email protected])

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

The mood at the annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in Toronto was definitely more upbeat and promising. As the world’s major economies start to recover from last year’s market crash and the collapse of commodity prices, most observers agree that China’s insatiable appetite for metals will continue.

The recent announcement of China’s Jinchuan Group Ltd.’s $150 million offer to buy Canadian nickel junior Crowflight Minerals and the announced merger between Quadra Mining Ltd. and FNX Mining Company Ltd. confirms that the metallic meltdown is over.

Interestingly enough, if Jinchuan’s takeover succeeds, it will give the Chinese government a small foothold in the Sudbury Basin. Crowflight owns or has under option about 800 square kilometers of advanced-stage base metal exploration properties in this region, the Thompson Nickel Belt as well as the Bucko Lake Nickel Mine, both in Manitoba.

Without a doubt, Ontario’s mining sector was one of the top discussions at this year’s PDAC. The Ring of Fire mining camp, located in the muskeg swamps of the James Bay lowlands, 500 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, has almost single handedly heralded the rebirth of Ontario mining industry.Richard E. Nemis and his daughter Jennifer Nemis Continue Reading →

Mining Gains Economic Boost From 2010 Ontario Provincial Budget

This article was provided by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

The provincial budget delivered by Finance Minister Dwight Duncan yesterday in the Legislature has made the future of mining in Ontario significantly brighter. The budget not only boosts the prospects of existing mineral producing operations but it reduces economic resistance to new developments.

“The budget begins to chart a course to a stronger economic future for the people of Ontario,” said Mr. Duncan. Several measures in the budget, which support statements in the Throne Speech of March 8, indicate that course will go through Northern Ontario and involve mineral production as a cornerstone.

The $450 million Northern Industrial Electricity Rate Program (NIERP), the $45 million new project based skills training program for Aboriginals and Northern Ontario residents, the appointment of a Ring of Fire Co-ordinator and the $1.2 billion in infrastructure development to strengthen Northern communities all represent positive commitments for the mineral sector. Continue Reading →

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (6 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario ’s Ring of Fire Discovery

Sheldon Inwentash is a major investor in the Ring of Fire area. He adds a cautionary note: “Until you have a number of these deposits that can carry the burden of infrastructure, it’s way too early to talk about mining.” No one argues the truth of this observation, but about twenty companies are staking big money that the size of the deposits will prove much larger in time with more drilling. Two companies that were in the play from the very beginning and pooled their efforts for a while are Spider Resources and KWG Resources; Freewest Resources has also been involved in a joint venture.

Spider president Neil Novak has been working in the James Bay Lowlands for a long time and stated once that, “Somebody told me my name is attached to about fifteen different kimberlites and a whole bunch of massive sulphide deposits.” Continue Reading →

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (5 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario ‘s Ring of Fire Discovery

Robert studies a week’s menus. Suppers have a minimum of two proteins, two starches, two vegetables, and one dessert, as well as the baked dessert tray. Other lunch and dinner options have three salads and vegetable, cheese, and pickle trays. Some menu items this week include rosemary chicken schnitzel, halibut fillet, roast beef, and barbequed T-bone steaks. A highlight dessert is apple, raspberry, and pear cobbler. Well-fed workers do a good job, and there are no complaints about meals here.

Before dinner, Diane Pohl puts on a fire drill conducted by the Matrix Aviation crew. Fire is a danger in such isolated locations. A small fire is set in a clearing in a forty-five-gallon oil drum. There is a 1,000-foot fire hose ready laid and the pump is on a small pond. Within a couple of minutes it is jetting water, and other workers come running in with portable hand pumps. One is David Carrier, who comes from Marten Falls First Nation. He is a burly man able to do a lot of physical jobs around the camp and is pleased to be able to save money in the camp environment.

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Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (4 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Discovery

Bruce gives us a tour and points to other residents. There are twenty drillers, some from Cyr Drilling from Western Canada, but the majority from Orbit Garant, a company from that seemingly inexhaustible supplier of the trade, Val–d’Or, Quebec. There are also three men who operate Devico directional drilling equipment, and their skills can send diamond drill rods slanting off in any desired direction. Caterer 1984 provides food services, and Matrix Aviation Solutions Inc. works to deliver services maintaining camp operation. One 1984 employee is Diane Pohl, who with her occupational first-aid certificate also is Health and Safety Officer, and in her spare time oversees housekeeping services. Her cautionary safety signs are found everywhere, as well as the Noront policy warning that states the camp is alcohol-free and illicit drug-free and advises all on the site that those who ignore this dictum face instant termination.

The camp consists of a combination of thirty-eight tents and green painted plywood cabins. One row of tents is called Sleep Alley, and signs warn passersby that drillers who work in twelve-hour shifts are sleeping. The tents are sixteen by ten feet and, like all the buildings, are well insulated. Continue Reading →

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (3 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Discovery

The hour-long flight offers an overview of small trees, narrow, winding rivers, and small lakes. The aircraft skims along at 283 knots and bumps down on schedule on the dirt runway at Fort Hope, whose traditional name is “Eabmetoong.” This settlement is on a fairly large lake, and the name means “the reversing of the water place.” The pilots stow baggage that accompanies the newcomers. One young mother has her baby in a soft, moosehide-covered tikanagan, the cradle of the Cree. The flight to Landsdowne House or Neskantaga is only about ten minutes. The population is similar to that of Fort Hope, less than 300 persons for this settlement on Attawapiskat Lake. The plane takes off and has another short hop of fifteen minutes before arriving at Webequie, the third dirt runway of the trip.

Although the resident population is only 253 persons, Webequie is an important community, as it is a jumping-off point for northern exploration camps. The band council has taken a 20 percent share in a drilling company, and local entrepreneurs have formed a logistics company to provide services to camp operators. This village is 540 kilometres by air from Thunder Bay. Continue Reading →

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (2 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Discovery

When junior companies take on ambitious exploration projects like the work to develop The Ring of Fire, the rate of burn — the expenditure of hard-won financial investment — is used up at a fast clip. Noront Resources alone spent $19 million in 2009. One industry analyst suggests that the six companies drilling in the area will spend around $250 million over five years on exploration. Since site access is by fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, the budget for transportation is huge.

So it is that the juniors band together in various joint ventures and option agreements, and, since many actually share offices in the same building, there is frequent consultation and shared planning. Nickel ore is considered attractive and would likely bring the fastest payback, but chromite as chrome also has great possibilities for development. If this is the case, concentrate produced on-site could be shipped on the hoped-for road to the south and possibly be processed at a facility set up to produce ferro-chrome, which could be built in Thunder Bay.

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Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (1 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Discovery

As the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Convention came to a close in March 2008, a group of industry influentials crowded the Imperial Room of the Royal York Hotel in Toronto for a luncheon to benefit Mining Matters, the mining education charity.

While they waited for the event to begin, a scratchy version of the stirring Johnny Cash song was played over the public address system. The fundraiser was in aid of charity, but the draw beyond the lunch was a claim-staking venture in the remote James Bay Lowlands, which was initiated in the late 1990s, and the events that followed. The series of properties that sparked the interest was dubbed — some say by Rob Cudney — “The Ring of Fire” because when it was further explored, the target area had the distinct shape of a broken circle or crescent with an original source as magma or molten rock from huge volcanic action.

The Cash song was really about love, but this mining play with the potential to create huge wealth for Canada and the expected much needed jobs and spinoff economic activity conjures up a mixture of emotions. The origin of the interest in the area came when two junior companies, Spider Resources and KWG Resources searched as a team for diamonds in 1997–98. They had optioned promising targets to De Beers, and one of these kimberlite targets was drilled and unexpectedly turned up evidence of copper and zinc. Continue Reading →

The 2010 PDAC Prospectors of the Year Award Winners for the Ring of Fire Discovery in Northern Ontario – John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Richard Nemis, Neil D. Novak and Mac Watson

(L to R) Award Presenter, Edward Thompson; Prospectors of the Year Winners, Mac Watson, Richard E. Nemis, John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Neil D. Novak

 

 

http://www.pendaproductions.com/ This video was produced by PENDA Productions, a full service production company specializing in Corporate Communications with a focus on Corporate Responsibility.

The PDAC Bill Dennis Prospector of the Year Award honors the memory of past PDAC president Bill Dennis who was one of the association’s staunchest supporters during its formative years and a prominent and respected prospector. This award is presented to individuals or groups who have made a significant mineral discovery, offered noteworthy contributions to the PDAC, or have been involved in some important service or technological invention or innovation that helped improve the Canadian prospecting and exploration industry.

John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Richard Nemis, Neil D. Novak and Mac Watson are recognized for the significant base metals and chromite discoveries in northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire.

In 2002, Neil Novak, as vice-president of Spider Resources Inc., was seeking kimberlites in the James Bay lowlands in a joint venture with KWG Resources Inc.

Novak had found 1.1-billion-year-old, diamond-bearing kimberlites under 130 metres of sand and limestone. De Beers Canada Exploration, curious about Novak’s work, formed a JV with Spider-KWG to look at their geophysical and geochemical database.

Novak’s expertise led De Beers to launch a reverse-circulation drill program near McFauld’s Lake, northern Ontario.

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Mining Act and Far North Act need more work: OMA submission

This article was provided by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

The Ontario Mining Association´s submission on the Mining Amendment Act and the Far North Act suggests both pieces of proposed legislation need some additional work, if they are to achieve the government´s intended goals.  The OMA submitted a full version of its review of Bill 173, Mining Amendment Act, and Bill 191, Far North Act, to the Legislature´s Standing Committee on General Government today. 

Last month, OMA President Chris Hodgson presented highlights of the OMA´s views to this committee at hearings in Thunder Bay.  Mr. Hodgson was accompanied at the public consultation by John Blogg, OMA Secretary and Manager of Industrial Relations, Adele Faubert, Manager of Aboriginal Affairs at Goldcorp´s Musselwhite Mine, and Jerome Girard, Mill Superintendent at the Musselwhite Mine. 

“Recent turbulence in the economy has had a negative impact on our industry, but there are steps that the government can take to ensure Ontario remains in an optimal position to take advantage of the next boom in commodity prices,” said the OMA submission.  “Bill 173 and Bill 191 are a start in that direction, but only if this committee ensures that the amendments recommended are in fact implemented in a manner that will foster the growth of mining in the province.”

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