Ring of Fire News

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

Ring of Fire News – September 22, 2012

  • Thunder Bay, Fort William First Nation hold open houses on proposed Mining Readiness Strategy ….  “The development at the Ring of Fire has some residents worried that the city isn’t prepared for the expected boom. The city has hosted a number of public meetings on the Mining Readiness Strategy in order to get feedback from residents. The main topic was how the city will handle the expected economic boom created by the mining development in the Ring of Fire area. The city held a meeting Monday night at Fort William First Nation where 56 people attended. Another meeting was held Tuesday at the Italian Cultural Centre …. John Mason, project manager for mining service with Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission, said the meetings are to both give information to the public but also get feedback on what they should be looking at. He said they were anticipating 150 to 200 people attend the event with the majority of people coming to the presentations …. ”  Source
  • …. as City, Consulting Reps try to make the case in a newspaper column  “…. What does all of this mean for the Thunder Bay region? To develop successfully, the mining industry will require infrastructure such as all-season roads, rail, and air transportation systems to access the resources; a reliable supply of power, requiring generation facilities and transmission lines to power the extraction and processing of the minerals; educational facilities at all levels to ensure there is a pool of job-ready skilled/trained workers; strong banking capabilities to provide the financing necessary to capitalize the facilities that are required; serviced industrial lands and a competitive tax structure to provide the economic incentives needed to attract processing and even post-production manufacturing facilities to the area; an efficient modern port to facilitate the cost-effective delivery of products to the international marketplace; and a host of related businesses, all working together to provide the economic foundation needed to support the growth of the mining sector in Northwestern Ontario ….”  SourceAlternate source
  • Calls for Ontario to Reconsider the North-South Connect to the Ring o’ Fire ….  “The Township of Pickle Lake wants the province to reconsider its support for a proposed north-south road corridor to Nakina from the Ring of Fire mining camp. “The businesses in our community stand to lose 30 to 40 per cent of their business due to the north-south route decision,” Mayor Roy Hoffman said Wednesday. “The impact of this could potentially put these businesses ‘out of business’ and put extreme pressure on a community that is already struggling to survive.” Hoffman explained that a north-south route would impact a supply chain developed over decades through Pickle Lake, which acts as a distribution point for building supplies, fuel, groceries, mail and medical supplies. “To fundamentally change the flow of traffic to (remote) First Nation communities will have a negative economic impact on the community,” he said, noting that the community prefers that a north-south rail line be constructed to get minerals to market from the Ring of Fire, south to Nakina and the CN Railway main line. And, that an all-weather east-west road corridor from Pickle Lake to the mining camp be constructed so that the community would continue its role as a distribution point for goods moving north. “The transportation of goods to the far north First Nations communities is one of the only private sector industries we have left,” Hoffman added ….”  Sourcealternate site for article
  • …. While Ontario Hydro Considers N-S Power Line  “The Ontario Power Authority (OPA) is examining a plan to run an electrical transmission line from Nipigon to Nakina and then into the Ring of Fire along the proposed north-south transportation corridor. Tim Butters, an OPA communications advisor, said that given the recent announcement of the all-season road between Nakina and the proposed Ring of Fire mines, the OPA is looking at the Nipigon to Ring of Fire transmission line “in more detail.” While Butters noted that no decisions on the transmission corridor have yet been made, he said the plan could involve connecting a number of remote First Nations to the southern electricity grid. “(The Nipigon to Ring of Fire corridor) may be able to connect up to five remote First Nation communities to the Ontario grid, including Marten Falls First Nation, Eabametoong First Nation, Neskantaga First Nation, Webequie First Nation and Nibinamik First Nation,” Butters wrote in an email to Wawatay News. Matawa First Nations have long argued that their communities should be connected to southern electricity grids as part of any development in the Ring of Fire ….”  Source
  • Chinese Interest in the Area Continues  “Chinese diplomats are intent on building trust with northern Ontario First Nations to further their mining interests, according to a Chinese-Canadian business man. Peng You, a Thunder Bay resident with ties to China, helped facilitate a recent visit by China’s Consulate-General to Webequie First Nation. He said the arrival of one of China’s top diplomats in Canada is significant. “I think that part is very important. It’s not just for one company. In future, more companies [will] invest in northwest Ontario, especially in [the] mining industry.” Webequie is one of the First Nations closest to a promising chromite deposit in the James Bay lowlands. For months, US-company Cliffs Natural Resources has been the focus of discussions about development in the Ring of Fire. But the Chinese company Sinocan is expected to start drilling near Webequie next month. Peng You said soon chiefs and elders from northwestern Ontario could be on their way to China to talk about the Ring of Fire as part of a diplomatic exchange. “They have to have some knowledge about China … because to deal with Chinese business people [it’s important to learn] a bit of culture about them,” Peng You said. Ontario’s Ring of Fire secretariat oversees development in the mineral development area. A spokesperson said the secretariat had “no knowledge” of the Chinese visit.”  Sourcealternate site for articlesome history/background (via Google) of Sinocan’s other dealings with First Nations
  • Ooopsie….  “The environmental assessment (EA) for Noront Resources’ Eagle’s Nest Ring of Fire project is nearing completion of its Terms of Reference. In a Wawatay News article (Ring of Fire judicial review hits more delays, Sept. 13) it was reported that Noront’s EA has been put on hold. That is incorrect. In fact, the company is close to completing its Terms of Reference for the EA. Noront President and CEO Wes Hanson submitted the following statement to Wawatay News following publication of the article: “The Environmental Assessment for it’s flagship Eagle’s Nest project is in fact underway and NOT delayed due to the change in the road route proposed by Cliffs and the Ontario Government. The Company is currently completing the final copy of the Terms of Reference, which outlines the work that needs to be done in order to complete the Environmental Assessment. This work is currently in process. The Company’s next step is to complete the studies that have been underway since 2009 and complete the final draft of the Environmental Assessment, which will then be submitted to the Ministry of Environment, for review, public comment and following finalization, Ministerial Approval.” Wawatay News apologizes for the mistake.”  Source
  • Cliffs’ Stock Continues to Draw the Eyes of Various Analysts ….  Sourcemorem0re – m0re – m0rem0rem0rem0rem0rem0re – m0rem0re
  • …. As Does Noront This Week, Too  “Here’s a look at three stocks — one energy and two mining — that had some of last week’s highest trading volumes (or the most shares exchanged between buyers and sellers) …. Trading volume of shares of Noront Resources surged to more than 1.6 million shares on September 17, after the base and precious metals explorer announced positive results for a feasibility study at its nickel, copper and platinum Eagle’s Nest project in the Ring of Fire region of Northern Ontario. Shares of the company have risen from 36.5 cents at the close on September 14 to 38.5 cents on September 17 ….”   Source
  • Whazzup With Proposed Changes to the Mining Act (And Why Isn’t It on the Web Page Anymore)?  “We last reported on proposed regulatory changes under Ontario’s Mining Act in a July 2012 legal update. What is the status of these regulations? What has occurred since then and when will the regulations be issued? The short answer is that the regulations and guidance documents are still under development and the earliest the regulations may be out is November.1 Although the public consultation period on the six regulatory proposals posted on the Environmental Registry (Registry) in March 2012 is closed, the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines (MNDM) is continuing to consult with First Nations on phase 2 of the Mining Act regulations, which deals extensively with relations between First Nations and the mining industry …. Some First Nations have pointed out what they see as flaws in the regulations and are concerned with how the government will monitor and enforce mining industry regulations and also how First Nations will be compensated for their consultation expenses. Some are also concerned with the attitudes, public statements and actions by some junior exploration companies who have grouped themselves in an ad hoc manner under the name “Miners United” and who appear to be taking a hard line stance on consultations with and compensation for First Nations by companies exploring for minerals on Crown lands …. Meanwhile, the MNDM is hoping to produce regulations that will balance the interests of First Nations and the industry. The regulations will have to be approved by cabinet committee and may not be posted on the Registry before then, although a notice of the government’s decision will be. Necessary guidance documents and operational policies are currently being prepared, some of which will progressively be posted on the MNDM website and/or Registry. Of note is that the MNDM website was changed over the summer with negative results for anyone trying to keep abreast of developments. In an apparent government move to streamline and standardize websites, almost all of the information about modernizing Ontario’s Mining Act has disappeared ….. “   Source
  • (Not Exactly Ring o’ Fire, But) First Nation Pulls Outta Far North Act Process  “Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) has pulled out of the Ontario land use planning process under the Far North Act. “At the end of the day, when everything is completed and done it is the minister who has the last say,” said KI Chief Donny Morris. “We want control and to have the minister have the last say, that is not what we want. So that is why we pulled out.” Morris sent the Aug. 31 letter to Dianne Corbett, director of Far North Branch, Ministry of Natural Resources, announcing the decision. Posted on the kitchenuhmaykoosib.com website, the letter stated that KI entered the land use planning process in a good faith attempt to work with Ontario to reduce land use conflicts in the KI homeland. “When we do the land use planning, it is for our own community membership to determine the future of our resources, our lands and water, not the minister,” Morris said. Morris said it has become clear to the community over time that land use planning under the Far North Act would change the jurisdiction and authority of KI on its homeland. “It is our view that the Far North Act acts to deny or limit the Aboriginal rights, Aboriginal title or treaty rights of KI and limits or defines the consultation and accommodation obligations between KI and Ontario,” Morris said in the letter. “In short, we cannot work within the limitations of the current legislation.” ….”  SourceAugust 31, 2012 letter 

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-21 Sept 12 (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.

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One Response

  1. […] all the hints about some level of Chinese interest in the Rof here, here, here, here and here? Finally, a firm nibble …. “A Chinese railway design firm will examine the engineering […]

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