Still time for Vale [pollution control] – by Carol Mulligan (Sudbury Star – December 29, 2011)

The Sudbury Star is the City of Greater Sudbury’s daily newspaper.

After completing what it calls an in-depth technical review, the Ministry of the Environment has approved Vale Ltd.’s application for more time — 10 years — to comply with new standards for nickel emissions that go into effect in 2016.

The approvals pertain to the Copper Cliff Smelter Complex, which is about to undergo a $2- billion retrofit to reduce sulphur dioxide, nickel and other emissions.

The ministry announced its decision Wednesday on its Environmental Registry. It said it determined it was feasible for Vale to reduce nickel emissions from 15 micrograms per cubic metre currently, averaged over 24 hours, to three micrograms per cubic metre averaged over 24 hours in 2015.

From July 1, 2015, to June 30, 2016, it will maintain that standard of three micrograms per cubic metre on a 24-hour average.

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NEWS RELEASE: Sudden Passing of John Zigarlick, Chairman of Nuna Logistics Limited


EDMONTON, Dec. 20, 2011 /CNW/ – Mervyn Hempenstall, CEO of Nuna Logistics Limited, announced the sudden passing of John Zigarlick, Nuna Logistics’ Chairman, on December 17, 2011. “As founder and Chairman, John Zigarlick was the pillar of the Company.  John’s passion about the North and its development was an inspiration to us all.

He will be missed by many of us who saw him as a mentor and friend,” said Mervyn early today. Amongst his numerous achievements, John will be best remembered for the pioneering spirit he demonstrated in 1980 in the concept, planning and execution of placing Echo Bay’s Lupin gold mine into production. Echo Bay developed from a small silver producer with a net worth of $7 million in 1979, to a corporation with a 1995 market capitalization of approximately $2 billion. Mr. Zigarlick spent 21 years in the employment of Echo Bay Mines Ltd., including 16 years as President and CEO.

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Building Canada’s Epic Ice Road (Popular Mechanics – December 18, 2009)

“If you want to learn about Canadian ice roads, sooner 
or later you have to talk to John Zigarlick.”

The truckers who haul 70-ton rigs hundreds of miles across Canada’s frozen lakes aren’t afraid of much — except warm weather.
The temperature: 10 below zero. The location: the middle of frozen Waite Lake in the Northwest Territories, 1000 miles north of the U.S. border. I’m with six Canadian ice-road experts on the shoulder of a highway that curves from the powder-frosted shoreline forest, across the lake and into the distance. In the pale light of winter, even the sun seems frozen.

Fifty yards away, a tanker truck hauling 40 tons of fuel oil inches forward, its huge diesel rumbling. I’m startled to hear the ice beneath our feet make a sound like shattering window glass, but no one else seems to notice. Apparently, ice that’s 3 ft. thick behaves this way when you drive a massive truck over it.

But something else I notice is definitely not normal. A few yards from the road, Waite Lake’s smooth surface rears up in jagged shards; beyond is a pool of black water.

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‘Landmark decision’ — Veinot allowed back on property – by Carol Mulligan (Sudbury Star – December 24, 2011)

The Sudbury Star is the City of Greater Sudbury’s daily newspaper.

United Steelworkers was claiming a major victory and enjoying an early Christmas after Vale Ltd. was convicted of unfair labour practice in what the union calls a landmark decision by the Ontario Labour Relations Board.

Board chair Bernard Fishbein ruled Thursday that Vale unlawfully denied USW Local 6500 vice-president Patrick Veinot access to Vale workplaces after the company fired him during the union’s year-long strike against the company.

Vale said it had the authority to fire Veinot, and eight other Steelworkers, for bad conduct on picket lines and in the community, but USW challenged that at the labour board.

One Steelworker retired immediately after the strike ended July 8, 2010. An OLRB tribunal is currently reviewing evidence presented by the union and the company in a separate matter.

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John Zigarlick Jr. – The Northern Miner 1984 “Mining Man of the Year” – by Patrick Whiteway

Since 1915, the Northern Miner weekly newspaper has chronicled Canada’s globally significant mining sector.

Working at the leading edge of gold mine development in North America is Echo Bay Mines of Edmonton under the quiet, confident leadership of President John Zigarlick Jr. – our choice for Mining Man-of-the-Year.

 While some goldmines struggle under the pressures of falling gold prices, Echo Bay is one of the companies always looking ahead, using new ideas to explore for and mine low-grade oxidized deposits of the southwestern U.S. and the high-grade sulphide deposits in the Canadian far north.

Born in Winnipeg and raised in the northern mining town of Uranium City, Saskatchewan, Mr. Zigarlick is no stranger to the north where the majority of Echo Bay’s interests lie. His knowledge of the north and the ability of people to work there was, no doubt, the source of his confidence in opening up the far north to mining activities previously thought to be either impossible or virtually uneconomic to even attempt.

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Just how resourceful are we? [Material shortages or not?] – by Eoin Redahan (Materials World – December 4, 2011)

Materials World magazine and website is specifically devoted to the engineering materials cycle, from mining and extraction, through processing and application, to recycling and recovery.

The house asked if we should be concerned about the future global supply of strategic materials. After listening to the tactful use of statistics, semantics and the C word, delegates at the Royal Academy of Engineering debate in London, UK, had to decide. Eoin Redahan regurgitates both sides of the argument.

‘There is no need for concern’

Horses lowered the tone in 19th Century London. With equine waste littering the roads, it was predicted that the city would be buried beneath manure by the year 2000.

The motion’s proponents argued that there is similar scaremongering today when it comes to strategic minerals. In the early 1970s, we were supposedly running out of tin, zinc and lead, yet they are still being mined 40 years later.

The evening’s first speaker, Andrew Bloodworth, Head of Science for Minerals and Waste at the British Geological Survey, said there hasn’t been an increase in new discoveries, but technological advances, improved methods of working old technology and better accessibility have helped increase yields in brownfield sites. ‘We can now move lowgrade deposits in more difficult environments,’ he said. ‘We are doing more with less.’

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Brazil: South America’s tiger – by Jorge Heine (Toronto star – December 28, 2011)

The Toronto Star, has the largest circulation in Canada. The paper has an enormous impact on federal and Ontario politics as well as shaping public opinion.

Jorge Heine holds the CIGI Chair in Global Governance at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University. His book (with Andrew Cooper) Which Way Latin America? Hemispheric Politics Meets Globalization, is published by United Nations University Press.

For those who arrive by ship to what some describe as the most beautiful city in the world, landfall can be disappointing. The first thing one is confronted with after setting foot in Rio de Janeiro and going through customs, is an elevated highway running along the coast, blocking views both ways. But there is good news.

That highway, an urban monstrosity if there ever was one, will be one of the first things to go as Rio gets a facelift for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympics. The underground burial of this monument to the “cult of the car” in 20th century cities, is part and parcel of Brazil’s massive infrastructure spending program as it gears up for hosting the world’s two leading sports events.

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Drilling for discovery [Northwestern Ontario’s mining sector] – by Maureen Arges Nadin (Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal – December 28, 2011)

The Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal is the daily newspaper of Northwestern Ontario.

Maureen Arges Nadin is a contributor to The Chronicle-Journal.

Every grade school student in Ontario learns that mining is one of the major industries of Northwestern Ontario. But beyond getting a good grade in social studies, most of us never give it more than a passing thought or fully appreciate its importance to the economy and culture of this region.

The mining industry is a strong and rock-solid presence in this area and regularly hums with activity. But most of that activity flies under the radar of every-day folks, who may not have a direct involvement with the industry.

But developments in the provocatively named Ring of Fire have awakened a new-found interest in the mining sector. People are paying attention, and inspired by the promise of renewed activity and jobs, they are looking to enhance their knowledge of mining in Northwestern Ontario.

Thunder Bay has a strong connection to the mining sector, and since the Hemlo gold discoveries in the 1980s, it has served as the regional service hub for the exploration and mining sectors.

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Millions From Diamonds Go to Mugabe, Observers Say – by John Eligon (New York Time – December 16, 2011)

JOHANNESBURG — Tens of millions of dollars in diamond profits — perhaps more — are being secretly extracted from state-owned mines in eastern Zimbabwe, bypassing the nation’s treasury and raising fears that President Robert Mugabe is amassing wealth to help extend his 31-year reign, according to monitoring groups, diplomats, lawmakers and analysts.

Even if Mr. Mugabe’s allies in the mining ministry are telling the truth about the number of diamonds produced, the treasury was still shortchanged by at least $60 million last year, according to a budget report by the finance minister, one of the president’s chief opponents.

But the amount of money being withheld from the nation’s coffers may be much larger than that. Experts, and even some members of Mr. Mugabe’s own party, say the president’s allies are lowballing the nation’s diamond figures by millions of dollars, hoping to hide the fact that profits are being diverted for personal and political ends.

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Minerals mining in Arizona can help spur U.S. economic growth – by Senator Al Melvin, R-Tucson, and Joe Hart, Arizona State Mine Inspector (The Arizona Republic – September 26, 2011)

The explosion in worldwide demand for minerals is good for Arizona’s mineral producers, including the state’s copper mines, which produce more copper than all the other 49 states combined and account for more than 60 percent of the nation’s total copper production. Arizona’s mineral mines have also made a positive contribution to our state and national economy.

According to a recent study by PricewaterhouseCoopers, mineral mining in Arizona supported more than 62,000 jobs, contributed roughly $7.5 billion to the state’s GDP and generated $1.8 billion in taxes to local, state and federal governments in 2008.

And that’s just Arizona. More than 1.1 million jobs are supported nationwide by mineral mining, and last year U.S. manufacturing used minerals to make products or provide services that added more than $2 trillion to the economy – approximately 14 percent of the nation’s GDP.

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Mining firms in Arizona seek riches – by Ryan Randazzo (The Arizona Republic – December 24, 2011)

Investors face long odds in quest for mineral profits

Arizona is the top copper producer in the U.S., but several small-time geologists and entrepreneurs combing the rocky desert in hopes of finding the next bonanza don’t produce any minerals at all.

Many exploration companies prospecting in Arizona hope to raise money through the stock markets to take investors along on their risky hunt for mineral profits.

They might have historical maps of their mines, ore samples, assay reports and other data, but almost none have a shovel in the ground.

Exploration companies face extremely long odds of finding minerals that big firms have overlooked and raising the money to dig for them, but they persist on the small chance they could strike it rich.

“It is definitely a risky form of investment,” said Daniel Bleak of Mesa, who has been involved in several exploration ventures, most recently Silver Horn Mining Ltd., which has stock traded on the over-the-counter market. “It is a long shot. It is just like the old oil fields.”

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Oil jobs the new gold as thousands join N.D. rush – by Nathan Vanderklippe and Paul Waldie (Globe and Mail – December 27, 2011)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

WILLISTON, N.D. AND WINNIPEG – In the icy parking lot of the Wal-Mart in Williston, N.D., the next wave of economic refugees is washing in, counting down the hours until they can turn their back on a past they’d like to forget.

On one chilly day in December, there’s the family from North Carolina, which has crammed mom, dad, teenage son and two dogs into an old Winnebago, driving some 3,000 kilometres in hopes of finding work. And there is Eric Larsson, who has come more than 1,000 kilometres from eastern Idaho in a truck loaded with tools, looking for a job after his position vanished – along with his house – three years ago. He’s pulling a trailer he just bought so he can have a place to sleep.

“I pretty much spent $10,000 on a wing and a prayer to get here,” he says.

These people, and thousands of others whose stories bear a striking similarity, have come to join the frenzy – by plane, by ratty truck, by train. Williston, with a population of around 20,000, was a quiet North Dakota town, surrounded by oil fields that had been in decline for decades.

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‘Tight oil’ holds promise of ending U.S. oil imports – by Nathan Vanderklippe (Globe and Mail – December 26, 2011)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

WILLISTON, N.D.— The drilling rigs puncture the horizons and tuck into the valleys of the bald North Dakota landscape. Their steel towers have taken root on a tableau of badlands and treeless plains that extends for more than 100 kilometres.

They are like steeples in the French countryside, erected in ever greater numbers, more every month, by an industry whose only deity is oil. Near many are the flares, the votive candles of the hydrocarbon age, where natural gas not worth enough to save is burned in enormous fireballs, some the size of small cars, so brilliant they blind drivers at night.

Cutting through it all are the roads – paved, gravel, red rock – that carry the rumbling parade of trucks, some burdened with supplies for the rigs, others with the oil they have prodded from the earth.

This is the place the energy companies call the Bakken, an oil play that has erupted across a forgotten corner of the U.S. It is a frenzy of drilling and pumping and moneymaking.

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Mine firm [Dumas Mining] digs deep – by The Daily Press (Timmins Daily Press – December 24, 2011)

The Daily Press is the city of Timmins broadsheet newspaper.

Dumas spreads Christmas cheer locally and internationally

A local mining company stepped up locally and internationally to help people in need this holiday season. Employees from Timmins-based Dumas sponsored gifts and events for families in their areas.

For example, this year staff in Timmins raised $10,000 to buy Christmas gifts for 55 children, and the crew at the Yauliyacu mine site in Peru supplemented corporate donations to sponsor the year end celebration for children at the tiny village school.

In Timmins, the tradition started in 2008 when Dumas staff decided to rally together to help local underprivileged children. They contacted Child Family Services and collected enough money to buy Christmas gifts for 10 children. Over the years, the amount raised and number of children supported has grown.

Last year, gifts were purchased for 30 children and Christmas dinner was sponsored for a whole family.

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The politics of pipe: Keystone’s troubled route – by Nathan Vanderklippe (Globe and Mail – December 24, 2011)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

CALGARY— Half-a-decade before TransCanada Corp.’s  Keystone XL ran into a wall of political and environmental resistance, a key stretch of the route linking Canada’s oil sands to refineries in the southern U.S. emerged as a tricky, though seemingly surmountable, problem.

The route crossed a landscape of prairie and farmland, far from mountains, tundra, permafrost and other features that make it tough to dig trenches and lay pipe. But there was one obstacle.

Engineers working for another proposed pipeline project called Altex closely examined a route similar to Keystone XL’s and identified a trouble spot. Glen Perry, a pipeline entrepreneur who steered Altex, remembers the warning he received from an engineer in 2006.

“I said, ‘What are the route issues here?’ He said, ‘There’s really only one.’ I said, ‘What’s that?’ He said, ‘You have to go through the boiling sands of Nebraska.’”

Boiling sands are areas where sandy soil is so thin that groundwater can bubble up through it to the surface.

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