De Beers Shares its Diamond Passion Through Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum Exhibit

This article was provided by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

Ontario Mining Association member De Beers Canada is sharing its passion for diamonds through its sponsorship of an exhibit at the Royal Ontario Museum.  “The Nature of Diamonds” exhibit is scheduled to be on display for all until March 22, 2009.  “For thousands of years, diamonds have held a special place in many cultures around the world,” said Jim Gowans, President and CEO of De Beers Canada.  “We are proud to be associated with the ROM to showcase the origins, history and allure of one of the rarest materials on earth.”

At a special event to mark the opening of the exhibit, recordings of Shirley Bassey singing the theme song from the James Bond movie “Diamonds Are Forever,” the presence of Canadian triathlon Olympian and medal winner Simon Whitfield and the opening of the vault to show the world´s third largest cut diamond and other spectacular gems and jewelry enhanced the celebrations.

The first diamond mine in Canada is celebrating its 10th anniversary of production this month.  Mr. Gowans pointed out that in that short time, Canada has advanced to become the third largest diamond producer in the world.  “Canada is now a diamond superpower,” said William Thorsell, Chief Executive Officer of the ROM.  “We are enjoying our relationship with De Beers Canada and (he suggested) I think we need to invent a single line of diamonds for men.”

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Diamonds, Diamonds Everywhere – by Marilyn Scales

Marilyn Scales - Canadian Mining JournalMarilyn Scales is a field editor for the Canadian Mining Journal, Canada’s first mining publication. She is one of Canada’s most senior mining commentators.

Imagine finding an exceptional, gem-quality white diamond weighing 189.6 carats. ROCKWELL DIAMONDS of Vancouver has done exactly that at its Klipdam mine near Kimberley, South Africa. The company reports that the stone is “oval in shape, somewhat flattened and strongly resorbed, and shows features typical of top colour high-value Type-2 gemstones.”

That description is sure to get everyone’s attention. So will the pictures of diamonds as large as 212-ct in the Diamond Gallery at

No less worthy of attention are recent exploration efforts for Canadian diamonds. Teams are finding diamonds and kimberlites at an astonishing rate this summer. Here are a few of them.

Vancouver’s COMMITTEE BAY RESOURCES and INDICATOR MINERALS reported the discovery of kimberlite boulders at the Borden project in Nunavut. Indicator minerals were visually identified in the float, and samples of the boulders have been sent for analysis.

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Ontario’s First Diamond Mine Officially Opened by De Beers Near Attawapiskat

This article was provide by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

The De Beers Canada Victor diamond mine is not only officially open but the process plant is officially operating 12% above its nameplate capacity at about 8,200 tonnes of kimberlite daily.   At the opening ceremony held on July 26, 2008 at the mine site, which is located about 1,070 kilometres north of Toronto, General Manager Peter Mah told participants “today, we have officially reached full production at the Victor Mine.”  He said about 330,000 carats of diamonds have been produced from the one million tonnes of ore processed to date.

“To mark this historic achievement of bringing the Victor Mine into production, Cree drummers and dancers will perform,” said Mr. Mah.  “We are Ontario´s first diamond mine and we should celebrate the hard work and dedication that everyone has put into this diamond dream.  I especially want to thank the Elders (16 Elders from the Attawapiskat First Nation were at the event) for their wisdom, guidance, experience they share and knowledge.”

A combination of De Beers corporate officials, suppliers, politicians, including Ontario Minister of Northern Development and Mines Michael Gravelle, First Nations representatives, other dignitaries and media arrived at the remote site 90 kilometres west of Attawapiskat on nine different flights to celebrate the opening of the Victor Mine with employees.  While building the $1 billion mine was a tremendous engineering feat, organizing and coordinating the opening must be viewed as an outstanding logistical achievement. 

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