Ring of Fire News


What's up with the biggest thing happening in mining in NW Ontario?

Ring of Fire News – 16 Jun 12

  • Ontario gives power break to companies creating jobs….  “McGuinty Government’s New Industrial Electricity Incentive Program To Help Attract Investment – The Ontario government is introducing the Industrial Electricity Incentive program to create new jobs in the industrial sector. The program would allow new and expanding industrial companies to benefit from the province’s strong energy supply. By January 2013, eligible companies could qualify for a reduced electricity rate if they create new jobs and bring new investment to Ontario. The program would encourage existing, large industrial companies to make significant expansions to their operations and create jobs. It would also help attract new companies to locate in the province. While Ontario’s economy continues to improve despite global economic uncertainty, electricity demands remain below pre-recession levels. The Industrial Electricity Incentive program would allow industrial companies to access electricity that would otherwise be exported to neighbouring jurisdictions. The program would not affect electricity rates for consumers. Helping industrial companies grow and compete in the global marketplace is part of the McGuinty government’s plan to attract new investment, strengthen the economy and support jobs for Ontario families ….”  Source (Government of Ontario news release) more (Backgrounder) more
  • …. which municipal leaders like….  “The Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association welcomes the Government of Ontario announcement that it is creating an Industrial Electricity Incentive Program. Such a program has been one of the key pillars of the NOMA energy policy for a number of years. “We have consistently called for an Ontario-wide industrial electrical energy price in order to maintain and attract industry to this province and, in particular, to Northwestern Ontario …. NOMA will continue to monitor the development of the Industrial Electricity Incentive Program and will develop a position paper on how it should be implemented to present to the Ministry of Energy when it meets with Ontario Cabinet Ministers at the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) conference in Ottawa in August.”  Source (NOMA news release)

    …. and Ontario’s Tories don’t 
    “In politics, as in comedy, timing is everything. In late May, it was reported that Dalton McGuinty had approached Prime Minister Stephen Harper regarding federal support for development in the Ring of Fire, and I couldn’t help but question the Premier’s sense of timing. Why did it take three years of pressure from the PC Caucus, miners, and northern communities to finally take some initiative and approach the federal government for funding? Why were these advances made only after a high-profile, flashy announcement by the Minister of Northern Development and Mines about a potential new chromite processing facility in Sudbury. Shouldn’t you acquire the funding before you pat yourself on the back with an indulgent press conference? More than anything, however, the story highlighted just how much time may still pass before development in the Ring of Fire is a reality. The government is only now approaching federal officials for funding and regulatory cooperation, with their level of commitment remaining unclear. Once the federal government is on board, McGuinty and Cliff’s Natural Resources can start to consider environmental assessments, and can begin to consult First Nations groups that are already angry at being shut out of negotiations thus far …. “  Source

    Ontario, Webequie sign a deal during a visit by Ontario mines minister Rick Bartolucci ….  “Ontario has signed an updated Memorandum of Co-operation with Webequie First Nation to work together to realize the many benefits from mineral development in the Ring of Fire. The Memorandum of Co-operation, signed during a visit to Webequie by Minister Bartolucci, commits the province to work with Webequie to advance discussions with the federal government to ensure communities are prepared to fully participate in Ring of Fire developments. Ontario is also committed to providing Webequie with social, community and economic development supports and resource revenue sharing associated with Ring of Fire developments. Ontario and Webequie First Nation will also work together on regional environmental monitoring and regional infrastructure planning. The Memorandum of Co-operation the need to develop a strong working relationship between the First Nations and the Ontario government on the potential impact of proposed development on their traditional territories. It also builds on a previous Memorandum of Co-operation signed in 2004 committing to help strengthen community foundations and bring prosperity to Ontario’s Far North ….”  Source (Ontario news release) More  –  more (In Support of Mining blog) more

    …. while Environment Minister Peter Kent visits Webequie (and doesn’t tell anyone)  “Federal Environment Minister Peter Kent paid a quick visit to Webequie First Nation last week to discuss the Ring of Fire. Webequie Chief Cornelius Wabasse said Kent stopped in to “see the community and the people of Webequie.” “He was concerned about potential impacts from the (Ring of Fire) mines,” Wabasse said. “He made comments saying he is committed to working with First Nations, not just Webequie.” Wabasse said the community was given short notice of Kent’s visit. Environment Canada did not issue a media advisory or a news release about the trip. Wabasse said he asked Elders in the community if it would be appropriate for the minister to visit, and was told to go ahead. “The Elders say we should invite ministers to our community anytime, just so the government can see how we’re living and what the living conditions are like in Webequie,” Wabasse said. “Hopefully when they see first hand what its like, they’ll consider that in how they work with us.” ”  Source

  • Webequie calls recent comments about Noront Resources delaying its project study a “misunderstanding”  “The chief of Webequie First Nation says the situation with junior mining company Noront Resources Ltd was all a misunderstanding. Webequie Chief Cornelius Wabasse voiced his disappointment when Noront announced they would be delaying their feasibility study following Cliffs Natural Resources decision to move its ferrochrome plant to the Sudbury area. Noront had been working on a feasibility study for its deposit containing copper and nickel. The company was proposing an east-to-west, all-season road that would run from Pickle Lake to the Ring of Fire area. But the company believes the province might be making an eventual commitment to the north-south road proposed by Cliffs. That decision is a major factor in the delay. While the series of events may have led to some friction between the First Nation community and Noront, Wabasse said they will remain open to development and continue to work with the company. “We like to be open about misunderstandings and we would like to work with the industry and the government and hope to resolve any issues that we have to resolve,” Wabasse told reporters on Friday. “For one thing, we have to go to the media and let the public know that we are working with the industry but sometimes there are some misunderstandings. What’s being misunderstood is how we work together and how we work together. Our concerns aren’t being addressed.” He said all parties are responsible when moving forward on development projects ….”  Source

    Marten Falls Chief wants to check out other chromite operations before passing judgment  “Having lost the ferrochrome smelter, Eli Moonias says he wants to visit other chromite mines around the world before he gives the go ahead to the Ring of Fire. The chief of Marten Falls First Nation fought hard to try to bring the Cliffs Natural Resources ferrochrome smelter to Northern Ontario. He said having the smelter in Greenstone would mean an electrical grid could have been established for the region giving not only his community but also everyone in the region a reason to switch from expensive diesel fuel. Ultimately, Cliffs chose to have the smelter build in a town near Sudbury. With it being years before Marten Falls could see any benefits from the Ring of Fire development, Moonias said he wants a firsthand look at chromite mining projects that are happening around the world to see the benefits of the mine. “I told the government that I wanted to see the land in Finland or South Africa or in Turkey or Kazakhstan,” Moonias said. “That’s where the existing chromite mines are. I want to see them firsthand. I want to see people, meet them, ask what their experiences are before I say go right ahead here in our area.” “I don’t know if I`ll be able to do that and if they will finance me to go there to see those sites.” ….”  Source more more

  • Treasury Board Tony Clement, speaking in Thunder Bay, comments on streamlining environmental assessments ….  “It’s a pleasure to be back here in Thunder Bay with you today. I want to thank Coastal Steel officials for their warm welcome and the other stakeholders here today who support the objectives of our Government’s Plan for Responsible Resource Development …. The development of the Ring of Fire in Northern Ontario holds the potential for billions in mineral wealth. Private sector estimates indicate that the chromite resources there could be worth as much as $50 billion. There are estimates for deposits of base metals and platinum-group metals worth as much as $10 billion. And there may also be deposits of gold, iron and other minerals in the region. Global investors are convinced of this region’s potential. The Cliffs Chromite Project is proposing to invest up to $3.4 billion to build a 30-year open pit underground chromite mine with ore processing capabilities. Noront’s Eagle’s Nest Project is proposing to invest $734 million to construct an 11-year nickel-copper and platinum-group metals mine, also with on-site processing ….”  Source

    …. and First Nation reaction  “The federal government’s minister of FedNor has ignited a backlash from First Nations leaders around the Ring of Fire by saying that delaying development is ‘inexcusable.’ Conservative MP Tony Clement told reporters in Thunder Bay on June 11 that while the government takes its obligation to consult with First Nations seriously, it will not give First Nations communities a veto over development. Clement was answering questions about comments made by Neskantaga First Nation Chief Peter Moonias that he would die before allowing a Ring of Fire road to cross the Attawapiskat River. “There’s going to be headlines here or there when somebody walks away from the table and then marches back to the table,” Clement told TB Newswatch. “But at the end of the day we find ways where the private sector can work with First Nations, can work with governments to ensure these projects can go ahead in a sensible manner.” Chiefs from four First Nation communities surrounding the Ring of Fire responded angrily to Clement’s comments, including Moonias. “Minister Clement chooses to minimize what I have said,” Moonias said in a statement. “I am not threatening to walk away from the table as he suggests, I am planning to prevent a road from being built over the Attawapiskat River unless we get the proper, negotiated Joint Review Panel EA process.” “The minister underestimates our connection to our land and he underestimates our determination,” Moonias added ….”  Source

  • First Nations unhappy with changes to Ontario’s Mining Act, too  “…. In a six-page letter to the Minister of Northern Development and Mines (MNDM), Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) pointed out a range of flaws with phase two regulations, including concerns over the lack of compliance monitoring and enforcement. “First Nations should not be asked to trust that companies will do the right thing,” NAN’s letter states. “There must be ongoing monitoring of all project sites, to ensure companies are properly motivated to comply with permit terms.” According to NAN’s letter, the government has said it will identify the “bad apples” among exploration companies over time. “The only way this would happen is by letting them spoil the land, perhaps even more than once, and then stop it from happening in the future,” NAN wrote. “This reactionary approach is not acceptable.” …. “(Ontario has) to regulate…and require industry to consult in advance of submitting workplans and permits. Failure to do so will mean continued First Nation-industry conflict, and will violate your legal duty to ensure meaningful consulation.” ….”  Source

    KWG smelter test update  “KWG Resources Inc. and Cliffs Natural Resources have now had an opportunity to consider the results of the smelting test conducted with part of the bulk sample recovered during last winter’s drilling program at the Big Daddy deposit. The test confirmed that the sample can produce a marketable charge chrome grade of ferrochrome product with relatively low energy consumption. However, the test experienced less than ideal conditions in the newly installed pilot plant at the Xstrata Process Support Services facility at Falconbridge, Ontario. A large portion of the bulk sample, crushed to size, remains available for further testing. Options for such further testing will be discussed when the parties meet this month to evaluate plans for further programs for the Big Daddy partnership. About KWG: KWG has a 30% interest in the Big Daddy deposit. KWG also owns 100% of Canada Chrome Corporation which has staked claims and conducted a $15 million surveying and soil testing program for the engineering and construction of a railroad to the Ring of Fire from Exton, Ontario where the Trans Canada line of the Canadian National Railway can be connected. KWG Shareholders’ Annual Meeting: KWG will convene its annual meeting of shareholders on Wednesday June 27, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. in Toronto, at the offices of Norton Rose Canada LLP, Suite 2300, TD Waterhouse Tower, 79 Wellington Street West, Toronto, Ontario ….”  Source (company news release)

    Renforth ROF update  “Renforth Resources Inc. wishes to update its shareholders on operations over the past two months. Nicole Brewster, President, CEO and Director of Renforth states: “Dear Renforth Shareholder: I am writing this note after two months as your new President and Chief Executive Officer, in order to provide an update on the recent changes and developments regarding our Company …. The Company raised a small amount of operating capital by the sale of 3 claims in the Ring of Fire. These were massive sulphide target claims, upon which initial exploration did not find any technically compelling reason to continue with exploration and were deemed non-material to the Company. The sale of these claims, which Renforth would not be advancing, generated enough capital to discharge existing debts such as legal and accounting, associated with the operation of the Company. The residual amount will be used for working capital ….”  Source (company news release)

    Timmins takes the high ground on where the Cliffs processor is slated to go …..  “The mayor of Timmins is congratulating Greater Sudbury on getting the billion-dollar ferrochrome smelter planned for Capreol. In a letter read by Greater Sudbury Mayor Marianne Matichuk at the June 12 meeting of city council, Tom Laughren praised Sudbury’s efforts to secure the facility, which is being built by Cliffs Natural Resources to process chromite mined from its Ring of Fire property in northwestern Ontario. Laughren wrote that the entire region stands to benefit from the project, and pledged to work with Sudbury in any way possible to ensure the project’s success. He praised the city’s efforts to win the smelter, saying Sudbury worked as hard as Timmins to try and win over Cliffs. “Throughout the process, all parties showed respect for each other,” he wrote. “This project is welcome news for the North and will have a positive impact for many businesses and people in northern Ontario. “If there’s anything we can do to help along the way, don’t hesitate to contact … us.” Matichuk praised Laughren and agreed that not only Sudbury stands to benefit. “I think it’s a really important message that they have sent,” she said. “There will be great opportunities for the entire north, not just Sudbury ….”  Source more (In Support of Mining blog)

  • …. while Kenora supports work in the Northwest  “…. The resolution going before a vote by council Monday states ‘The City of Kenora hereby supports the fundamental intent of the resolutions arising from the joint meeting of the Lake Nipigon First Nations, the Matawa North-South Alliance as well as the municipalities of Thunder Bay, Greenstone and Nipigon’. Mayor Canfield regards regional solidarity on Ring of Fire development as essential for northern residents and communities. He referred to the recent decision to build a $1.8 billion ferrochrome processing plant in Capreol, near Sudbury despite the regional campaign to have the facility located in Greenstone. The mayor suggested the decision was political as the government failed to provide any justification in locating the processing site at Sudbury rather than Greenstone despite the Northwestern Ontario municipality’s closer proximity to the source of the ore.”  Source

More information (excerpts from open sources monitored 1-15 Jun 12 – 21 page PDF) here. All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act. The blog is not responsible for the accuracy of the source material, and inclusion of material doesn’t mean endorsement.


Filed under: Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: