Archive | Sudbury Basin

Project imagines mining without the need for blasting – by Staff (Sudbury Star – August 8, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Imagine building a new underground mine — or expanding an existing one — without using explosives.

That’s the goal of a new project unveiled in Sudbury on Wednesday. And while the announcement was made in here, the money — $1.5 million — will go to McGill University of Montreal to test cleaner methods of mining.

“Today’s announcement is a great example of how we can use intelligent, targeted investments to ensure Canada remains at the forefront of mining practices,” Sudbury Paul Lefebvre said in a release. “By investing in projects like rock fragmentation research, we will ensure that Canada remains a leader in environmental stewardship, while creating a more prosperous mining industry.” Continue Reading →

Sudbury’s mining expertise, regreening success story attract Latin American delegations – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – August 2, 2019)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Battery-powered mining equipment and Sudbury’s regreening efforts are attracting groups from Latin America to visit the Nickel City in August.

Sudbury’s growing mining expertise in the development and use of battery-powered electric vehicles (BEV) has attracted the interest of managers and engineers from Codelco, the world’s largest copper producer.

Representatives from Chile’s state-run mining company, arrive in Sudbury on Aug. 5 to begin a five-day tour of operations and suppliers in Sudbury and Kirkland Lake. The Aug 5-9 visit is organized by Sudbury and Area Mining Supply and Services Association (SAMSSA). Continue Reading →

World’s largest ore chute created in Sudbury – by Len Gillis (Northern Ontario Business – August 6, 2019)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

A manufacturing shop in Greater Sudbury has created the largest ore chute in the world, which will soon be shipped out and installed in one of the largest copper and gold mining operations in the world, the Rio Tinto Oyu Tolgoi mine in Mongolia.

The massive steel chute, as big as a house and with built-in safety features, was manufactured at Variant Mining Technologies in Lively. It is the prototype for several other chutes that will be installed at the mine in the coming months and years.

An ore chute is a device that allows chunks of rock (muck) to be transported by force of gravity from one level of the mine to another level. The chute is used to control the flow of muck, or waste rock, so that haulage equipment such as scooptrams, ore trucks or even underground rail cars can be loaded quickly and safely. Continue Reading →

MacLean Engineering prepares to show off Sudbury test mine – by Len Gillis (Northern Ontario Business – August 1, 2019)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Less than a year after purchasing a test mine property near Lively, MacLean Engineering is preparing to use the former Mining Technologies International (MTI) facility to showcase its various battery-electric and remotely operated mining vehicles there.

MacLean purchased the property in September 2018 on the former MTI industrial site on Magill Street in the Walden Industrial Park (Lively) area of Greater Sudbury. The test mine is less than 10 kilometres from MacLean’s sales and service centre in Sudbury’s South End.

MacLean’s Sudbury general manager, Stella Holloway, said the mine property needed to be brought into compliance with several provincial regulations with respect to mining operations and health and safety. MacLean has even set up an agreement for mine rescue services, she said. Continue Reading →

‘Tragedy of pollution’: Award-winning article details how gov’t, miners wrought harm on Sudbury’s landscape – by Staff (Sudbury Star – July 26, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

A scholarly article exploring the “tragedy of pollution in Sudbury” has earned its authors an award from the Ontario Historical Society.

The 2018 Riddell Award, acknowledging the best work on a subject of Ontario history in a given year, was recently presented to Mark Kuhlberg and Scott Miller for their article Protection to Sulphite Smoke Tortfeasors: The Tragedy of Pollution in Sudbury, Ontario, the World’s Nickel Capital, 1884-1927, which appeared in The Canadian Historical Review in June 2018.

A tortfeasor, by the way, is someone who commits a wrongful act, in this case applied to the mining companies that spread harmful emissions, but only because, as the article contends, it was permitted by provincial lawmakers at the time. Continue Reading →

That’s no moon: Before these NASA astronauts went to space, they went to Sudbury – by Claude Sharma (TVO – The Agenda – July 22, 2019)

https://www.tvo.org/

In the 1970s, the agency sent astronauts to northeastern Ontario to prepare for their trips to the moon — and helped drive the region’s scientific aspirations

SUDBURY — In 1971, astronauts John Young and Charles Duke loaded up with equipment —backpacks, radios, cameras — and walked along rocky ledges, communicating their movements as if to a home base.

Later that year, they’d do the same thing nearly 385,000 kilometres away as astronauts on the Apollo 16 moon mission. On this day, though, they were in the Sudbury Basin, practising for the real thing.

“Once they did their traverse, we would go over what they saw,” remembers Don Phipps, a local geologist who helped facilitate the training. “One of the objects of this visit is that when they got on the moon, they could report back with some kind of knowledge of what they saw on the ground.” Continue Reading →

Boom possible: Demand for electric vehicles bodes well for nickel … and for Greater Sudbury – by Darren MacDonald (Sudbury Northern Life – July 23, 2019)

https://www.sudbury.com/

Car companies ramping up EV battery production across the globe

While nickel analysts expect the price of nickel to dip again despite the impressive gains it has made in recent weeks, demand for the metal is bright thanks to the increasing demand for electric vehicles.

Nickel was trading at US $6.40 on Monday afternoon on the London Metals Exchange (LME), down from last week’s high of US $6.85, but still up more than 20 per cent in the last two weeks.

Commonwealth Bank commodities analyst Vivek Dhar told the Financial Review that the reasons some have given for the recent surge – falling LME stockpiles and an impending export ban in Indonesia – are not new revelations, and are factors traders have known for a long time. Continue Reading →

One day longer 10 years later – by Darren MacDonald (Sudbury Northern Life – July 22, 2019)

https://www.sudbury.com/

In July, 2009, more than 3,000 Steelworkers walked off the job in Sudbury after failing to strike a deal with Inco’s new owner, the Brazilian mining giant Vale. A decade later, we look back at how it all started and what it all meant

In the months leading to the strike at Vale in 2009, a major confrontation seemed both impossible and inevitable. There was talk almost immediately in the mining industry that, having purchased Inco in 2006, the only way the deal made sense for the Brazilian multinational was to undo the benefits package the Steelworkers had fought for in collective bargaining that ensured retirees a guaranteed income.

Defined benefits, as it was known, protected workers from inflation, from the ups and downs of markets. The nickel bonus, too, which saw workers paid more when nickel prices were high, was also a major obstacle in Vale’s view of things, as were restrictions on using contractors. For the company, these sorts of benefits represented unacceptable long-term costs and risks that threatened the viability of their Canadian purchase.

Anyone who has ever been in a union can tell you that heading into negotiations for a new contract, improvements are the goal, and concessions are the red line that can’t be crossed. For a union such as the United Steelworkers of America, headed by Sudbury’s own Leo Gerard, such concessions were unthinkable. Continue Reading →

Sudbury was a stand-in for the moon and other little-known (Canadian) things about the Apollo program – by Nicole Mortillaro (CBC News – July 12, 2019)

https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/

While Canadian astronauts may not have visited the moon yet, our achievements are part of Apollo history

In a few days, the world will mark the 50th anniversary of humans first setting foot on the moon. Apollo 11 was an ambitious mission that would see three men — Neil Armstrong, Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin and Michael Collins — head to the moon, with the ultimate goal of walking on its surface.

The almost-Herculean task on July 20, 1969 wasn’t only made possible by the effort put forth by the three men, with Armstrong and Aldrin being the first men to set foot on another world. It was also thanks to more than 400,000 people who worked behind the scenes.

And you may be surprised to know that Canada played an important role in the ambitious project that took humans far from home. Here are a few facts about Canada’s role in this historic mission. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Mining Innovation: CEMI, Sudbury, Ontario and CEDC, Thunder Bay, Ontario sign memorandum of understanding to co-develop capacity of the mining innovation ecosystem (July 8, 2019)

In an effort to help strengthen collaboration across Ontario and leverage resources within the mining innovation ecosystem, the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation (CEMI) and the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission (CEDC) are pleased to announce the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU).

The Doug Murray, CEO of CEDC said that “Mining and further mining innovations are important aspects for the continued growth of the Northwestern Ontario Economy and thus appreciate CEMI’s support to make this happen.” and his words aligned with CEMI’s President Douglas Morrison who said “CEMI has always undertaken to help promote mining activity in the north-west of Ontario, and this is another way to recognize our collaborative relationship.”

The purpose of this MOU is to promote a collaborative strategic approach to all aspects of mining, through mining research, technology development and the commercialization of mining innovation. Continue Reading →

Steel contributes $225K to research – by Mia Jensen (Sudbury Star – June 29, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

The United Steelworkers announced Friday that they are committing $225,000 over the next three years to Laurentian University’s Centre for Research in Occupation Safety and Health.

As the only centre for occupational health and safety research in Northern Ontario, CROSH’s goal is to partner with workers, workplaces, communities and governments to tackle relevant workplace challenges.

The centre uses a field-to-lab-to-field approach to their research. Researchers engage with industries and communities in the field to understand the problems they are facing. Then they bring their findings to the lab at Laurentian University to troubleshoot evidence-based solutions, before bringing those solutions back to the workplace to be tested in the field. Continue Reading →

A woman’s view of Inco – by Mia Jensen (Sudbury Star – June 29, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

In 1974, Inco started hiring women for the first time since the end of the Second World War. Cathy Mulroy, then 19, was the second woman in line for a job. Now, she’s written a book about her experiences.

Mulroy worked on the anode casting wheel in the copper refinery. Her job was to empty the molten metal arriving in hot cars from the smelter, into the furnace. It was hot, grimy work, but for Mulroy, the labour wasn’t the difficult part of her experience.

“Over the years, I was kind of a person who believed in people’s rights,” she says. “I was never quiet. So right off the bat, I started getting into trouble.” Continue Reading →

Economy ‘booming,’ Bigger says – by Mary Katherine Keown (Sudbury Star – June 28, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

“We have the greatest concentration of hard-rock underground mining expertise in the world. All of this, as transportation and industry shifts from fossil fuels to battery-electric technologies that require nickel, copper, cobalt and lithium – all extracted from within our city and Northern Ontario.” Sudbury Mayor Brian Bigger.

Sudbury has a bright future, according to the  city’s mayor. During his fifth state of the city address Thursday, Brian Bigger praised the city he calls home and said others are starting to take note of local attributes.

“As the saying goes, ‘It’s all about the economy.’ But I say it’s all about the people. Cities and industries of the future are being built around expertise,” Bigger told a packed Caruso Club. “We have the greatest concentration of hard-rock underground mining expertise in the world.

All of this, as transportation and industry shifts from fossil fuels to battery-electric technologies that require nickel, copper, cobalt and lithium – all extracted from within our city and Northern Ontario.” Continue Reading →

[Falconbridge] ‘I thought the smelter had blown up’ – by Harold Carmichael (Sudbury Star – June 21, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Electrician Gary Hrytsak was taking a brief nap during a coffee break at the Falconbridge smelter complex about 10:05 a.m. June 20, 1984, when he got thrown off the bench he was on.

“It was an eerie feeling,” recalled the now-retired Hrytsak during his speech at the 35th Workers’ Memorial Day ceremonies at the Caruso Club on Thursday. “You could feel things shaking under your feet … I thought the smelter had blown up.”

Hrytsak, who went on to do compensation, health and welfare work for his union (Mine Mill and Smelter Workers Local 598), said he put on his respirator, went to the electrical shop and telephoned his foreman, only to be told to stay where he was. Continue Reading →

New play explores Sudbury’s labour strife – by Mia Jensen (Sudbury Star – June 20, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Conversations around a kitchen table are a common experience, but playwright Rick Duthie believes that in Sudbury, something has been missing from the discussion.

Duthie’s new play, One Day Stronger, explores Sudbury’s labour history from the perspective of Laurie, anchored to her kitchen table, who relives her childhood memories from the 1958 Inco strike to her present, at the end of the 1978 Inco strike.

With more than 20,000 people on strike in a city of just 75,000, the post-war Inco strikes were a time of tension, disunity, and emotional exhaustion. Duthie’s play explores these events from the intimate perspective of a family, and a girl at two different points in her life. Continue Reading →