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Ring of Fire News – 30 Jan 12

  • North Bay Tory MPP outs Ontario’s Ring of Fire Co-ordinator following chat.  “Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli chastised the McGuinty government Friday for mismanaging the vital Ring of Fire mining development in Northern Ontario and causing unnecessary delays. The development schedule for the major companies has already been pushed back a year to 2016. Today, Dalton McGuinty’s Ring of Fire coordinator, Dr. Christine Kaszycki, admitted to Fedeli at a conference in North Bay that she has NEVER stepped foot on the site.“I was shocked to learn that she has never set foot in the Ring of Fire. No wonder this project is stalled!” exclaimed Fedeli, who toured the site himself last summer and is working to arrange a sales trip for local firms there this spring.“ The government says one thing, but doesn’t actually do anything. All they’ve done is hire people, built a bureaucracy, and not actually done any work. That’s why the projects are delayed another year.” The Ring of Fire may prove to be the largest mining discovery of the last 100 years. This massive deposit of chromite located west of James Bay could create prosperity for the North for decades to come. “This dithering is unacceptable at a time when we’re desperate for good-paying private-sector jobs in Ontario and need to create prosperity to dig ourselves out from the $16-billion deficit hole Dalton McGuinty has dug for us,” said PC Northern Development and Mines Critic and Parry Sound-Muskoka MPP Norm Miller.“It’s time for real leadership on this issue. ”Miller, who’s also toured the site, added that since the October election, the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines hasn’t issued a single news release focused on The Ring of Fire, and Minister Rick Bartolucci only seems to talk about it when pressed by the media. In a speech in Timmins this week, Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak pledged the PC party would move swiftly to turn the Ring of Fire into a job-creating reality. As part of the PC platform, Hudak would appoint the Minister of Northern Development and Mines as the Ring of Fire coordinator ….” Source (or MPP news release at Scribd.com ) – Moremore
  • Ontario Tory leader repeats Ring of Fire, Far North Act messaging in Timmins.  “Ontario Opposition Leader Tim Hudak won a round of applause in Timmins Wednesday when he said he wants to scrap the controversial Far North Act. Hudak was in Timmins as part of a week long tour of the North. He was accompanied by Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli and former Timmins-James Bay PC candidate and Kapuskasing mayor Al Spacek. The Far North Act, known as Bill 191, was passed by the previous Ontario government in 2010 to regulate development and to ensure that the far Northern areas of Ontario would continue to be pristine and that any future development would involve consultation and participation of First Nations. In doing that, the Liberals decided that roughly 50 per cent of the land mass of the far north would have no development at all. Mining and logging would be severely restricted. Speaking to a Timmins Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Wednesday, Hudak called Bill 191 “a colossal ball of red tape” that he said would turn Northern Ontario “into a virtual museum.” Hudak claimed the act did not take in the interests of Northerners but instead was inspired by the concerns and criticisms of Southern Ontario special-interest groups. “They want see Northern Ontario as one giant park,” said Hudak. He added that the Progressive Conservative party wants to focus on job creation in the North and investment in Northern businesses. “And if I had the honour of being premier of the province of Ontario, I will scrap the Far North Act once and for all,” said Hudak …. Hudak said a similar concern is arising now with the Ring of Fire development. The Ring of Fire refers to a series of rich chromite orebodies discovered in the McFaulds Lake area north of Webequie. “This is not just a once-in-a-generation, not just a once-in-a-lifetime; it’s a once-in-a-century opportunity. We’re talking about tens and tens of billions of dollars of wealth and prosperity,” said Hudak. He said the current Liberal government is dragging its feet on the development of that venture. “We’ve had lots of lip service but no action,” in bringing that to reality he said …. ”  Source
  • Cliffs:  Still aiming at 2015 mine, processing plant opening.  “Cliffs Natural Resources said Friday it still plans to open a chromite mine and plant by 2015, despite claims by a Conservative MPP that development of the so-called Ring of Fire area has been pushed back to 2016. “There has been no changes for the Ring of Fire chromite project timeline established by Cliffs,” said Patricia Persico, a Cliffs Natural Resources spokeswoman, when contacted by The Star. Earlier Friday, Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli accused the McGuinty government of mismanaging the Ring of Fire, a huge, mineral-rich tract of land in northwestern Ontario. Fedeli said development of the Ring of fire has been delayed to 2016 from 2015, and he blamed the provincial government and its Ring of Fire co-ordinator, Christine Kaszycki….”  Source
  • Sudbury Mayor:  (Maybe) a spring announcement re:  where the big processing plant’ll go.  “Cliffs Natural Resources may decide where to put its $1.8-billion ferrochrome processing facility by early spring, (Sudbury) Mayor Marianne Matichuk said at a Rotary Club gathering on Monday. “They are looking at investing. They haven’t made their final decision. We’re doing what we can,” said Matichuk, referring to meetings between city officials and the mining company this past fall. While Cliffs is looking at several Northern Ontario locations, the Moose Mountain Mine Site, about 20 kilometres from Capreol, was used as its base case for the Chromite Project. The ferrochrome facility will handle chromite ore from the company’s Black Thor deposit in the mineral-rich Ring of Fire area of northwestern Ontario. The plant would create as many as 500 jobs. While little information was released about the city’s meeting with Cliffs, Matichuk said on Monday that the company may make their decision soon. “We’ve been told early spring, but that’s up to the company,” she said. Last week, when contacted by The Star, a company official said Cliffs has no news on when a decision was going to be made ….”  Source
  • Meanwhile, Thunder Bay’s Mayor reminds us there’s more than one player in the Ring of Fire.  “(Thunder Bay) Mayor (Keith) Hobbs is excited about prospects for the “other” player in the Ring of Fire mining zone. In a speech to the Thunder Bay Rotary Club, Hobbs praised Noront Resources for its plans for the mineral rich area. He says we are finding out quickly that Cliff’s Natural Resources isn’t the only player there. Noront is making a presentation in the near future to council on it’s Eagle’s Nest project.”  Source
  • Kenora MPP tells Twitter about visit to Noront operation.  “@Sarah4NWO Thank you to Gilles Bisson @BissonGilles for organizing the trip to Attawapiskat and the Ring of Fire. Two very informative days ….  Just got back from the Noront Esker Camp. Impressed with their innovation and environmental stewardship …. An aerial view of @NorontResources Esker Camp in the Ring of Fire. From our Wednesday tour. http://pic.twitter.com/vZmXM9p6 ….  I posted 35 photos on Facebook in the album “Attawapiskat/Ring of Fire trip” http://fb.me/17bq0ov9c Source more moremore
  • New Ontario Chamber of Commerce report includes a few Ring of Fire mentions.  “…. Northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire is hailed as the most promising mining opportunity in Canada in a century …. Maximizing opportunities from the Ring of Fire will require consultation with Aboriginal peoples, and with a variety of stakeholders, as well as adequate infrastructure, energy supply, and environmental stewardship …. Maximize resource development: Ensure that investments in the Ring of Fire generate the greatest benefits for Ontario ….”  “Emerging Stronger” report (PDF) more
  • Matawa First Nations:  Big $ needed to help potential Ring of Fire workers deal with prescription drug abuse.  “Matawa First Nations leaders are proposing a $34 million strategy to halt prescription drug abuse — a strategy that would fund addiction and mental health workers in nine communities. And perhaps, most importantly, the plan would include ongoing care. Breakdown of the costs for Matawa First Nations drug strategy: Of the $33.6 million proposed to roll out the plan, about $20 million would be allocated to the nine First Nations that fall under the Matawa umbrella. There would be more than $10 million for two residential treatment/healing centres at Constance Lake and Eabametoong, and about $1.8 million for Matawa regional initiatives. Diane Andrews, an alcohol and drug abuse worker at Constance Lake First Nation, said many people return from addiction treatment, only to relapse, because there is no aftercare in the community …. With a price tag of close to $34 million, the dream is a big one. That money would pay for dedicated staff in each of Matawa’s nine First Nations to treat addictions, manage withdrawal and provide mental health services. It would also create residential treatment centres located in Constance Lake and Eabametoong, as well as reinforce cultural pride and education to help prevent drug abuse in the first place. To pay for it all, Matawa will approach the federal government and make a pitch for private donors like Ring of Fire mining companies, who may want to invest in an addiction-free workforce.”  Source
  • Matawa seeks “Mining Advisor”.  “Matawa First Nations Management requires a highly skilled and self-motivated Mineral Exploration Mining Advisor (Mining Advisor) that has the professional ability to advise First Nations on mineral exploration and mining projects on matters related to engaging the mining industry, community consultations, early exploration agreements, and impact and benefit agreements. In addition, the Mining Advisor must keep abreast of mining claims and companies operating in the Matawa region; interact with companies and provide them information on the Matawa communities and vice versa; and facilitate discussions between companies and First Nations. The Mining Advisor is not expected to provide detailed technical advice on mineral exploration or mining in each stage of the mining cycle but is able to provide general advice and to champion the development of working relationships between the companies and First Nations ….”  Job posting (PDF) Alternate download site for job posting (PDF)  Matawa’s previous Mining Exlporation Advisor?  Raymond Ferris, who started work as Matawa’s Ring of Fire Co-ordinator about a year ago.  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-28 Jan 12 (PDF) here. All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act. We’re not responsible for the accuracy of the source material, and inclusion of material doesn’t mean endorsement. 

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