Difficult decisions to open a new all-electric mine in Sudbury – by Len Gillis (Northern Ontario Business – September 13, 2023)


Glencore’s new Onaping Depth mine will need an underground refrigeration system and smaller diameter tunnels to keep the costs down

The process of going from diesel-powered underground mining to battery-electric mining is now a foregone conclusion for most Northern Ontario mine operators, but there are going to be plenty of growing pains.

That was one of the messages that came out of the Global Mining Guidelines Group forum held in Sudbury on Sept. 12 to examine the job of converting underground mines to full battery electric operations.

Read more

As OPEC’s Energy Influence Wanes, China’s Minerals Clout Rises – by Greg Ip (Wall Street Journal – September 13, 2023)


But geography and innovation mean cobalt, lithium and copper can never be weaponized as effectively as oil and gas

From OPEC’s oil embargo on the U.S. in the 1970s to Russia’s cutoff of gas to Western Europe last year, unsavory regimes have weaponized their control of oil and gas to pursue strategic goals. The transition to green energy has the potential to neuter the oil and gas weapon for good. Yet we might simply be swapping one form of commodity dependence and its geopolitical baggage for another.

Wind, sun and hydrogen are free. But the equipment that transforms them into energy, stores it in batteries and transmits it needs vast quantities of minerals whose supply is more concentrated than that of oil and gas.

Read more

Uranium price makes fresh decade high as forecasts grow (even) rosier – by Frik Els (Mining.com – September 12, 2023)


Uranium is officially in a bull market with a 20% rise in price so far in 2023, vastly outperforming other metals markets. Uranium scaled $60 per pound on Friday for the first time since 2011. The breakthrough for the nuclear fuel after a decade in the doldrums coincided with the last day of the World Nuclear Symposium in London.

The World Nuclear Association’s biennial report provides long and medium term projections and insights into the more obscure corners of the global supply chain.

Read more

Final hearing on future of Meliadine gold mine begins in Rankin Inlet – by Emma Tranter (CBC News North – September 12, 2023)


Agnico Eagle proposes to install wind turbines, extend mine life by 11 years

Meetings on a proposal that could change the future of Agnico Eagle’s Meliadine gold mine get underway in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, Tuesday. The Nunavut Impact Review board will host technical meetings and a site visit followed by a community roundtable that will run until Sept. 20.

the Meliadine gold mine lies about 25 kilometres north of Rankin Inlet and 80 kilometres southwest of Chesterfield Inlet. It was first approved in 2015. The proposal now under review would extend the life of the mine by 11 years, until 2043.

Read more

Critical Mineral Geopolitics: Latin America’s untapped potential – by Alex Blair (Mining Technology – September 13, 2023)


Latin America holds half the world’s lithium. How will increasing government control, foreign exploitation and a proposed Argentina-Chile-Bolivia alliance affect production?

Every day, 160km south-east of Antofagasta in Chile, some 2,500 miners don their overalls and head to the Escondida copper mine.

Meaning “hidden” in Spanish, the name Escondida comes from the mine’s main orebody, which does not outcrop on the surface but is concealed by hundreds of meters of overburden. Escondida is also the world’s largest copper mine, producing 2,904 tonnes of copper each day.

Read more

Northern gold miner celebrates $320M mining shaft that will boost production, cut costs – by Darren MacDonald (CTV Northern Ontario – September 13, 2023)


Kirkland Lake-based Agnico Eagle Mines celebrated the opening of its No. 4 Shaft at its Macassa Mine on Wednesday, which is expected to boost production and cut costs. To celebrate that milestone — and the mine’s 90th anniversary – the company announced it’s donating $3 million to the Canadian Cancer Society.

The donation will support “people living in rural and remote communities in northern Ontario by providing access to cancer prevention programs and support services to help them navigate through a cancer experience following a diagnosis,” Agnico said in a news release.

Read more

OPINION: Pennsylvania can help our country meet the growing demand for rare-earth minerals – by Mike Armanini (Penn Live Patriot News – September 2023)


Historically known as a hub of industrial innovation, Pennsylvania is now poised to enter a new era of economic prosperity through the mining and refinement of rare-earth minerals. As global demand for these critical elements skyrockets, the Commonwealth has a unique opportunity to leverage its rich geological endowment to not only boost its economy but also contribute significantly to technological advancements and our nation’s security.

Rare-earth minerals, a group of 17 elements, play a pivotal role in modern technology. They are crucial to manufacturing consumer electronics, renewable energy systems, and advanced defense technologies.

Read more

Former Yamana head Peter Marrone eyes emerging nations for next big venture in gold – by Naimul Karim (Financial Post – September 12, 2023)


Shift to non-traditional mining locations required to give investors the high returns they expect, he says

After selling Yamana Gold Inc. in March, a company Peter Marrone founded two decades ago, some expected the 63-year-old mining executive to take up fishing since he had never played golf, or, at the very least, take some time off before his next business venture.

But barely weeks after selling Yamana for US$4.8 billion to Canadian mining rivals Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. and Pan American Silver Corp. in March, Marrone jumped at the opportunity to head a mining company with gold-producing assets in Mali, Ivory Coast and Ethiopia.

Read more

Red Lake Camp keeps giving as Frank Giustra-backed explorer hits bonanza gold – by Henry Lazenby (Northern Miner – September 12, 2023)


Industry financier Frank Giustra’s first foray into gold exploration struck it big Tuesday, reporting bonanza gold grades of more than a kilogram per tonne at its Rowan property in the fabled Red Lake Camp of Ontario.

West Red Lake Gold Mines (TSXV: WRLG; US-OTC: WRLGF) reported Tuesday that hole RLG-23-163B cut 70.8 grams gold per tonne over 8.3 meters, including a segment of 0.5-meter grading 1,120.19 grams gold per tonne.

Read more

De Beers Ends Lab-Grown Engagement Diamonds Foray as Prices Drop – by Thomas Biesheuvel (Bloomberg News – September 13, 2023)


(Bloomberg) — De Beers decided to call time on offering lab-grown diamonds for engagement rings even as the man-made alternatives continue to cannibalize demand in one of the company’s most important markets.

After vowing for years that it wouldn’t sell stones created in laboratories, in 2018 De Beers reversed that position and only this year started testing sales of the diamonds in the crucial engagement-ring sector. The diamond industry leader said Wednesday that the trial showed that it wasn’t a sustainable market.

Read more

The Money Pit and Ultimate Death Spiral of Small Scale Mines – A Rant – by Brian Buss (Linked In – September 12, 2023)


Does every deposit have a economically viable solution? With the upcoming closure of operations at Silver Lake Resources’ Sugar Zone Mine in White River, I’ve been thinking on the great conundrum of the small, low grade mine. Is there an economic solution for every deposit regardless of it’s specific geometry, continuity, and grade distribution.

I’ve often heard the phrase “mines are made, not found”, but is this, in fact the reality? Or is this simply the mantra of promoters and hucksters who’ve successfully hyped up and flogged an obvious dead horse to a gullible, naïve, or otherwise foolhardy group of investors? Are there some deposits that should simply never be developed?

Read more

Biden plan would overhaul 151-year-old mining law, make companies pay royalties for copper and gold – by Matthew Daly (Associated Press – September 12, 2023)


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is recommending changes to a 151-year-old law that governs mining for copper, gold and other hardrock minerals on U.S.-owned lands, including making companies for the first time pay royalties on what they extract.

A plan led by the Interior Department also calls for the creation of a mine leasing system and coordination of permitting efforts among a range of federal agencies. This comes as The White House has been pushing to boost domestic mining for minerals needed for electric vehicles, solar panels and other clean energy.

Read more

Governments’ $28.2-billion for EV plants will take 20 years to break even, not five as Ottawa suggested, PBO says – by Bill Curry (Globe and Mail – September 13, 2023)


Federal and Ontario government subsidies that total $28.2-billion for two electric vehicle battery plants will take 20 years to break even, not five as the federal government has suggested, according to a new report by Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux.

Tuesday’s PBO report takes a closer look at two major announcements earlier this year aimed at securing Ontario manufacturing jobs in the EV sector. At an April news conference in St. Thomas, Ont., Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced $13.2-billion in federal production subsidies for a new EV battery plant to be built by Volkswagen.

Read more

Memory Lane: When the Inco Club was the heart of the community – by Jason Marcon (Sudbury.com – September 13, 2023)


For nearly five decades, the Inco Employees Club served as a hub for community, entertainment and more in the city’s downtown core

If a person turns off Elm Street onto Frood Road in downtown Sudbury, they will very quickly come across our city’s nod to the Art Deco form. A grey building that appears triangular at first (not unlike the downtown’s other flatiron buildings) but behind that street-level facade lies an expansive facility that served the community’s needs for nearly 50 years.

Let us now step through its front doors and back in time to immerse ourselves in a little bit of the history as well as some of the special events that were held within the hallowed walls of the Inco Employees Club.

Read more

Europe’s mining quest faces a hurdle: angry locals – by Catarina Demony, Pietro Lombardi and Simon Johnson (Reuters – September 13, 2023)


COVAS DO BARROSO, Portugal, Sept 13 (Reuters) – In Portugal’s northern Barroso region, Maria Loureiro weeps at the prospect of losing her family’s land to a mine that could become one of Europe’s biggest producers of lithium, used in electric vehicle batteries and other clean technologies.

“I don’t want them to take away what has been left to me by my parents and grandparents,” 55-year-old Loureiro said. “I don’t want the mine … I will fight it to the death.” She is among local activists in Portugal and elsewhere whose determination to halt mine developments – via protests, legal challenges or simply refusing to sell or rent the land needed – threatens to slow the European Union’s green transition.

Read more