Archive | Vale

Alistair Ross stepping down as head of Vale Canadian mining operations, including those in Thompson – by Kyle Darbyson (Thompson Citizen – December 13, 2018)

https://www.thompsoncitizen.net/

Vale’s management structure in Canada continues to change with the company recently announcing that Alistair Ross will step down as the director of North Atlantic mining operations by the end of the month when his contract expires. According to a Dec. 11 Vale memo, Mike McCann, who has worked for the Brazilian mining giant in Sudbury for the last six years, will replace Ross Jan 1.

“Mike has done a superb job leading processing operations across the North Atlantic and Asia, delivering value projects and achieving production and safety improvements in a number of areas across our business,” said Ricus Grimbeek, chief operating officer for Vale Base Metals, in that memo. “I have every confidence that Mike will continue his track record of success leading our mining and milling operations.”

This move is the latest change to Vale’s Thompson management, which began back in July when Manitoba Operations vice-president Mark Scott’s position was eliminated. Ross was given the responsibility of overseeing Vale’s Canadian operations in Manitoba, Ontario and Newfoundland and Labrador at that time. Continue Reading →

Vale doubles down on nickel ahead of EV revolution – by Andy Home (Reuters U.S. – December 7, 2018)

https://www.reuters.com/

LONDON (Reuters) – Vale, the Brazilian mining giant built on supplying the world’s steel mills with iron ore, is now betting on the electric vehicle (EV) revolution to turn its nickel division around.

“We believe in this revolution to come,” Chief Executive Fabio Schvartsman told analysts at the company’s investor day presentation in New York this week. The use of nickel in lithium ion batteries will translate into at least 500,000 tonnes of extra demand by 2025, according to Vale, which is planning to play a leading role in meeting the additional need for high-grade metal.

However, to do so, it will have to turn around its troubled New Caledonian operations, a task described by Schvartsman as “maybe our biggest challenge”. It will also have to gamble that Chinese players led by the Tsingshan steel group don’t make the technological breakthrough that would allow them to convert nickel ore straight into battery-grade nickel. Continue Reading →

Brazil’s Vale to pump $500 million into nickel mine, ends partner quest – by Rodrigo Campos (Reuters U.S. – December 4, 2018)

https://www.reuters.com/

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Brazilian miner Vale SA (VALE3.SA), the world’s top nickel producer, plans to invest $500 million in its struggling New Caledonia nickel mine on its own after previously vowing to find a partner for the venture.

Vale’s decision to invest in the project alone, from 2019 to 2022, reflects the company’s new understanding of the importance of an expected surge in electric vehicle (EV) sales, Chief Executive Fabio Schvartsman said on Tuesday.

“The decision to continue on our own was made because (New Caledonia) could be a very important part of strategy to supply nickel especially given the EV revolution,” he told journalists after Vale’s investor day presentation in New York. “We thought initially that we could have a partner but it was in a moment when we had no clarity on the incoming EV revolution.” Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: VALE AND GLENCORE TO INITIATE JOINT FEASIBILITY STUDY TO POTENTIALLY DEVELOP RESOURCES ACCESSIBLE FROM NICKEL RIM SOUTH MINE

SUDBURY, December 4, 2018 – Today, Vale and Glencore announced that they are entering into an agreement to facilitate a joint Feasibility Study to explore the possibility of developing and mining resources at depth accessible from the existing workings of Glencore’s Nickel Rim South Mine.

The Study will examine the economic and technical feasibility of using the existing shaft and infrastructure at Glencore’s Nickel Rim South Mine, as well as additional underground infrastructure, to potentially jointly develop and mine deposits in very close proximity to each other. This includes Vale’s Victor property and a shared deposit which exists adjacent to the boundary between each Company’s properties.

“A joint approach could allow for resources to be unlocked that would likely not otherwise be productive,” said Ricus Grimbeek, Chief Operating Officer, Vale’s North Atlantic Operations and Asian Refineries. “Assuming a successful outcome to our Study, this synergy could also lead to significant value generation – including job creation – at a time when the medium to long-term market outlook for both nickel and copper looks very promising,” he added. Continue Reading →

Below $5: Slumping nickel prices should rebound in three or four months, analyst says – by Darren MacDonald (Sudbury Northern Life – November 23, 2018)

https://www.sudbury.com/

‘We all know batteries for electric vehicles are going to be very important new demand source of nickel’

After surging this past spring by 75 per cent, nickel prices have sagged badly in recent weeks, and the price per pound dropped below $5 on Thursday.

The slump follows predictions of higher prices in 2018, a disappointment for an industry that has waited years to recover. It’s especially important in Greater Sudbury, where mining employs about 17,500 people directly or indirectly.

So what’s going on? Terry Ortslan, a nickel analyst at TSO and Associates in Montreal, said Thursday the industry is facing a double whammy that’s depressing prices. While the market for stainless steel wasn’t expected to drive the price, demand for the higher-grade nickel needed for electric car batteries has hit a few speed bumps. Continue Reading →

BHP prepares for UK legal battle over 2015 Brazil dam failure – by Kirstin Ridley and Barbara Lewis (Reuters U.S. – November 22, 2018)

https://www.reuters.com/

LONDON (Reuters) – Mining giant BHP says it will fight an unprecedented English lawsuit filed by hundreds of thousands of Brazilians for multi-billion pound damages over Brazil’s worst environmental disaster.

SPG Law, a British offshoot of a U.S. litigator, represents 240,000 individuals in Brazil, 24 municipal governments, a Roman Catholic Archdiocese and members of the Krenak indigenous community and has filed three legal claims for unlimited damages over the failure of the Fundao dam in 2015. It looks set to be the largest group action heard in England.

London and Australian-listed BHP, the world’s largest mining company by market value, said it had received correspondence from the law firm but also noted it had so far committed $780 million to the Renova Foundation, an entity created by the miner and its partners to manage reparations and repairs. Continue Reading →

Brazil, India to defy global slowdown of iron-ore production up to 2027 – by Marleny Arnoldi (MiningWeekly.com – November 21, 2018)

http://www.miningweekly.com/

The global iron-ore market will stay well supplied up to 2027, supported by expanding output in Brazil and India, says Fitch Solutions’ Macro Research unit.

Global iron-ore production will grow modestly from 3.36-billion tonnes to 3.41-billion tonnes by 2027, representing a yearly growth rate of 0.5%, which is a significant slowdown compared with the 5% a year growth that was recorded between 2008 and 2017.

Fitch reported that, on the one hand, supply growth will be primarily driven by India and Brazil, where major miner Vale is set to expand output with its new mine. On the other hand, miners in China that operate at the higher end of the iron-ore cost curve, will be forced to cut output, owing to lower ore grades. Brazil’s ore grade averages 65% while China’s ore grades hover around 21.5%. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: VALE DONATES $100,000 TO PLACE DES ARTS (November 12, 2018)

(Sudbury, November 12, 2018) In its capital fundraising campaign, Share Our Sense of Place, Place des Arts has received a generous donation of $100,000 from Vale. The company made the announcement at the Théâtre du Nouvel-Ontario’s annual benefit concert on Friday, November 9, 2018.

“Vale is proud to support Place des Arts and the future role it will play as a cultural hub in the City of Greater Sudbury and Northern Ontario,” said Ricus Grimbeek, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Operations and Asian Refineries. “We look forward to the grand opening and celebrating this centre for the arts with everyone in our community for generations to come.”

Place des Arts will be Northern Ontario’s first multidisciplinary arts and culture centre. It will be home to eight cultural organizations and is expected to host 850 events in its first year and generate 50,000 admissions. Phase 1 of construction began on October 29th and Phase 2 will follow in 2019. The estimated economic effects of construction are $18.7 million, with the creation of 180 jobs. Continue Reading →

Generations Of Miners Face The Future Of Automation Deep Underground – by Mary Katherine Keown (HuffPost Canada/Thet Canada.com – November 13, 2018)

https://www.thetcanada.com/

A proud third-generation miner, Mickey O’Brien enjoys the every day grind of taking that deep dive to the centre of the earth. A miner at Vale’s Copper Cliff Mine in Sudbury, Ontario, O’Brien works 10-hour shifts. After suiting up and assembling, he and his coworkers break into a number of crews to start the new and soiled process of gnawing away on the earth greater than 1.5 km underground.

“I am on haulage,” O’Brien says. “Proper now I am driving a grader, however I am being skilled on a picker, so if we’ve massive chunks after a blast, the news will put them apart and I drill holes in them and I blow them up, and the news will come and decide them up. Cool, eh?”

A proud labour rights activist, he considers a lot of his colleagues — most of whom are members of Steelworkers Native 6500 — to be brothers and sisters. “I have been engaged on Inco property since I used to be 18 and I am 38 now,” he says, referencing the title of his firm earlier than it was purchased out by Vale in 2006. Continue Reading →

BHP Billiton facing £5bn lawsuit from Brazilian victims of dam disaster – by Jonathan Watts (The Guardian – November 6, 2018)

https://www.theguardian.com/

Action launched in Liverpool against Anglo-Australian mining company after 2015 tragedy that killed 19 people

The worst environmental disaster in Brazil’s history has triggered one of the biggest legal claims ever filed in a British court.

The Anglo-Australian mining company BHP Billiton is being sued for about £5bn by Brazilian victims of the Samarco dam collapse in Mariana three years ago.

The class action case was filed in the Liverpool high court on Monday by the UK-based SPG Law on behalf of 240,000 individuals, 24 municipal governments, 11,000 businesses, a Catholic archdiocese and the Krenak indigenous community. Continue Reading →

Throwback Thursday: A brief history of mining in Sudbury Northern Life – by Callam Rodya(Sudbury.com – March 2, 2017)

https://www.sudbury.com/

With two of Sudbury’s most important employers, Vale and Glencore, reporting healthy profits last week, we asked the Greater Sudbury Archives to dust off some old footage and photos from the earlier days of this fledgling industry, to give you a brief history of mining in Sudbury. Continue Reading →

A full life: Sudburian who survived German prison camp, helped build Superstack passes away at age 90 – by Heidi Ulrichsen (Sudbury Northern Life – November 1, 2018)

 

https://www.sudbury.com/

Aarne Kovala’s daughter wrote a book about his Second World War experiences

A man who survived being taken prisoner by the Germans as a teenage Finnish merchant marine during the Second World War and later went on to help build the Superstack here in Sudbury passed away Oct. 30 at the age of 90.

“From his youth as a sailor in Finland, his travels across Canada raising smokestacks, and his work constructing homes and buildings in Sudbury, Aarne brought energy, determination, and sisu to every project,” said Aarne Kovala’s obituary. “Aarne loved spending time at his camp on Lake Panache surrounded by friends and family. He will be remembered for his cheerful personality and easy laugh.”

Sudbury.com interviewed Kovala about his life a couple of times over the years, most recently in 2017, when he spoke about his role in building the Superstack in the wake of news that it will be dismantled. Continue Reading →

Better nickel, base metal prices in 2020, Vale says – by Staff (Sudbury Star – October 26, 2018)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Lower prices for metals, including nickel, and the planned maintenance shutdown at its Sudbury operations, ate into Vale’s third-quarter revenues of its base metals division.

In a presentation Thursday, Vale said its base metals division generated US $778 million in the second quarter, but only $528 million in the most recent quarter.

“About 65 per cent of the decrease (in the third quarter) is related to the exogenous factor of lower prices of nickel, copper and cobalt, and 35 per cent mainly associated with Sudbury’s annual planned maintenance shutdown and its effects on lower by-product volumes and higher costs.” Continue Reading →

Vale still keen on nickel, at least in the long term – by Staff (Sudbury Star – October 25, 2018)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Vale said Wednesday it remains optimistic about the long-term prospects for nickel. The short-term, however, is another matter.

The company’s third quarter “results represented a tipping point for the Base Metals business,” Eduardo Bartolomeo, executive officer for Vale’s Base Metals division, said in a release. “We are undergoing an important restructuring process led by our new management team with the focus on optimizing our operations, stabilizing our cost structure and reviewing mine plans.

“We are creating the basis for the nickel business to generate strong cash flows in any price scenario, while keeping the optionality to capture the upside of emerging demand for nickel in electric vehicles.” Part of that restructuring has led to mine closures and job cuts in Sudbury and Thompson, Man. Continue Reading →

The Future of the Car May Be Older Than the Model T – by David Stringer, Chisaki Watanabe, Jie Ma, Jack Kaskey, Andrew Noel and R.T. Watson (Bloomberg/Mining.com – October 21, 2018)

http://www.mining.com/

Vale has said it expects the EV revolution to boost battery market
nickel demand to as much as 700,000 tons in 2025, from just 36,000
tons this year.

(Bloomberg) — It took more than seven years for automakers to sell 4 million passenger electric vehicles. It’ll take about six months to sell the next million.

That surging demand is transforming the lithium-ion battery business, with more power packs expected to be installed in EVs this year than in consumer electronics, according to Bloomberg NEF. China, where subsidy-toting drivers own a third of the world’s passenger EVs, is doing the most to fuel the boom.

The market value of batteries used in electric cars, electric buses and related energy storage should multiply by about 10 times to a potential $500 billion by 2050, according to Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. research. Many of the biggest battery producers aren’t benefiting now because they’re spending billions of dollars to add manufacturing capacity and form global partnerships with automakers. Down the line, though, the trend changes. Continue Reading →