Renewable energy depends on rare metal, but can it be mined sustainably? – by Benjamin Powless (Welland Tribune – April 25, 2022)

Long Point First Nation is calling for more comprehensive environmental reviews after an Australian mining company said it wants to expand operations in the area. The Anishinabek community situated in Winneway is concerned about the impacts of lithium mining, a key component in the global efforts to move towards sustainable energy.

As environmental initiatives push consumers towards electric vehicles, debates rage over how “green” is the production of key elements like lithium, as mining can devastate landscapes.

Read more

First Nation in Abitibi-Témiscamingue seeks independent review of potential mining project (CBC News Montreal – April 5, 2022)

An Anishinabeg First Nation in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region wants to lead its own environmental assessment of a lithium mining project that the company Sayona is looking to develop on ancestral land.

The Long Point First Nation, whose 800 members mostly live in Winneway, Que., is concerned about the potential impacts that the project could have on its land and its traditional way of life.

Read more

Ontario risks losing its auto crown as cheap, green power gives Quebec the EV edge – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – March 12, 2022)

As both provinces race to woo automakers and battery makers, a new quandary could arise

Ontario Premier Doug Ford this past fall spoke at a provincial construction industry conference and told his audience that his province would be at the vanguard of the next revolution in automotive production. “We’re going to be the No. 1 manufacturer of electric cars anywhere,” he said.

Similar things are said next door in Quebec. Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon regularly brags about the powerful combination of his province’s rich mineral endowment and the cheap, low-emission electricity produced by Hydro-Québec.

Read more

GM, POSCO Chemical partner for $500-Million EV battery supply chain plant in Quebec – by Adam Radwanski (Globe and Mail – March 7, 2022)

Canadian governments’ efforts to woo investment in electric-vehicle manufacturing are starting to bear fruit – especially with one aspect of the supply chain, in one corner of Quebec.

On Monday, General Motors Co. announced that, in partnership with the South Korean company POSCO Chemical Co. Ltd., it will begin construction on a new $500-million factory in Bécancour, Que. The plant, which GM says will be operational by 2025 and create about 200 jobs, will produce cathode active material (CAM) – a major component of EV batteries that GM will assemble in the United States.

Read more

Osisko to develop Windfall without Northern Star – by Staff (Canadian Mining Journal – February 17, 2022)

Osisko Mining (TSX: OSK) has decided to develop the Windfall gold project 200 km north of Val d’Or, Quebec by itself. Joint venture talks with Northern Star (ASX: NST) were announced last November, but they have now been broken off.

Osisko says that its independent development of the project would be the most beneficial option for its shareholders.

While Northern Star will not be a partner in Windfall, Osisko maintains it will continue a cordial and beneficial relationship with the Australian company, which is an important debt holder having advanced a $154-million convertible senior unsecured debenture due Dec. 1, 2025, with an interest rate of 4.75% per annum.

Read more

‘It really hurts’: Cree trapper struggles with losing more of his trap line to lithium mine – by Tom Fennario and Shushan Bacon (APTN News – January 30, 2022)

Ernie Moses is what Cree in Quebec call a tallyman – someone who is in charge of their family’s trapline. It’s something Moses has done for over 20 years. Located near the Cree First Nation of Eastmain in the James Bay region of Quebec, there’s not much else the 64-year-old would rather be doing with his time.

“How do I explain it… it’s just so open!” said Moses, illustrating with his arms. “Seeing nature, that’s what I love. And trapping, moose hunting, setting snares, and all of that.” Moses’s favorite animal to trap? The beaver.

Read more

Betting against coal, Rio Tinto taps Quebec’s hydro power to produce green aluminum – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – December 1, 2021)

We’ve got hydropower, and we’ve got the lowest carbon aluminum smelting technology in the world’

Rio Tinto Plc.’s latest investment in a Quebec aluminum smelter is another example of how Canada’s natural resources will remain an investment magnet in the new, more sustainable economy.

Earlier this month, the metal giant announced a $110-million investment its aluminum smelters in Quebec — believed to be the first investment of any scale in any new North American aluminum production following about a decade of stasis, during which China’s sector rose to dominance.

Read more

Osisko Mining raises $154M for Windfall, plans JV with Australia’s Northern Star – by Staff (Canadian Mining Journal – November 30, 2021)

Osisko Mining (TSX: OSK) has signed an agreement with Australia’s Northern Star Resources (ASX: NST) to raise $154 million for continued work on its Windfall gold project 200 km north of Val d’Or, Que. The two companies have also agreed to negotiate the terms of an earn-in and joint venture allowing Northern Star to earn up to a 50% interest in the Windfall project.

The financing agreement will see Osisko issuing a convertible senior unsecured debenture due Dec. 1, 2025, to Northern Star. The debenture bears an interest rate of 4.75% per year payable semi-annually.

Read more

Quebec touts minerals, hydro in push to lure EV battery production – by Michelle Zadikian (Bloomberg News – November 9, 2021)

Quebec has “a lot to offer” electric car companies when it comes to establishing a supply chain for battery cells, including sourcing key raw mineral components to cheap power, the province’s economy minister said.

“Quebec has a lot to offer for the supply chain for [electric vehicles]. We’ll start with the minerals – we have lithium, nickel, graphite,” Quebec’s Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon said in an interview Tuesday.

Read more

Orford Mining partners with Wyloo Metals to explore West Raglan in Quebec – by Daniel Sekulich (Northern Miner – November 2021)

Global mining news

Well before Wyloo Metals began its fight with BHP (NYSE: BHP; LSE: BHP; ASX: BHP) for Noront Resources (TSXV: NOT), the Australian company signed a definitive agreement with Toronto-based junior Orford Mining (TSXV: ORM) for its West Raglan nickel project in Quebec’s Nunavik region.

The deal, signed in January, sees Wyloo earning up to 80% of the West Raglan project by spending $25 million on exploration over the next seven years. Wyloo was expected to spend $1 million of the $25 million this year, but has already spent $1.7 million.

Read more

Agnico CEO Sean Boyd says he has ‘no idea’ if competing bid for Kirkland will emerge – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – October 29, 2021)

Sean Boyd, the chief executive officer of Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd., says he’s confident Agnico’s multibillion-dollar bid to acquire Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd. will succeed, even if he has little idea whether a competing offer will emerge.

Toronto-based Agnico last month reached a friendly agreement to acquire Kirkland in an all-stock, no-premium takeover valued at more than $13-billion. If it closes, the transaction will see Agnico emerge as the third-biggest gold company in the world, with a portfolio of mines based mainly in Canada and Australia. The deal is the biggest M&A transaction ever attempted by Agnico, and one of the biggest ever in the Canadian gold sector.

Read more

Britishvolt reveals plans for 60GWh Canadian battery cell factory, cathode and anode production and R&D centre – by Emma Jarratt (Electric Autonomy – October 7, 2021)

In the heart of Montreal’s downtown core at 1 Place Ville Marie — one of the tallest buildings in the city — is the address of Britishvolt Canada Inc.’s headquarters.

Technically, Britishvolt’s Canadian seat doubles as Denton’s senior business advisor Philippe Couillard’s office. But that makes sense as Couillard, along with a small but growing team, is largely responsible for bringing the British technology and manufacturing company to Canada — and which this week revealed to Electric Autonomy Canada in an exclusive interview its plan to build a 60GWh battery cell gigafactory, an R&D centre, and anode and cathode processing set up in Quebec.

Read more

Making Quebec a key accelerator of the global energy transition – by Patrick Bertrand-Daoust (Canadian Mining Journal – October 8, 2021)

Canada has a big goal to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. That transition is going to require the collective effort of all sectors to enable their energy transitions and strategically work towards building cleaner, more prosperous products and operations.

But turning those plans into reality will heavily rely on the mining and metals sector to provide the raw materials needed to reach ambitious goals. And with the target date around the corner, demand is coming quick.

Read more

Gold miners Agnico Eagle, Kirkland Lake propose $13.5 billion mega-merger – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – September 29, 2021)

Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. and Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd., largest and second-largest gold producers in Canada, on Tuesday announced an all-stock merger, valued at around $13.5 billion that creates a new gold mining giant with its center of gravity in Canada.

The merged entity would keep the Agnico Eagle name and produce about 2.5 of its 3.4 million ounces of gold per year from mines in Canada. The deal comes about one year after gold, a traditional safe haven in times of economic uncertainty, reached an all-time peak at US$2,067 per ounce in August 2020.

Read more

Agnico Eagle deal to buy Kirkland Lake Gold criticized – by Niall McGee and Andrew Willis (Globe and Mail – September 29, 2021)

Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. plans to acquire Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd. in an all-stock transaction that the companies say will create a “true Canadian mining champion,” but the deal garnered a lukewarm reception on Bay Street, with some investors questioning the strategic rationale.

Toronto-based Agnico said on Tuesday it intends to pay 0.7935 of its shares for each Kirkland share, or about 1 per cent higher than Kirkland’s average close over the 10-day period as of last Friday, essentially making it a nil-premium deal valued at more than $13-billion.

Read more