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Ring of Fire News – February 1, 2013

  • Wynne Wins!  “As far as premiers from Toronto go, KathleenWynne was the best choice among the Liberal contenders for the North. We do not know yet what will come of Wynne’s attention to the North during the leadership campaign, but there is promise. Wynne vowed to create a northern cabinet committee — there are four Liberal MPPs in the North — and hold a cabinet meeting in the North in the first 30 days. She vowed to focus on enhancing roads, bridges and transportation, much of which is aimed at developing the Ring of Fire chromite deposit in the James Bay Lowlands. Cliffs Natural Resources plans to build a smelter north of Capreol to handle material from the Ring of Fire, bringing about 400 permanent jobs to the Sudbury area. She promised to complete the four-laning of Highway 69, which is vital to Sudburians for economic and safety reasons. And she wants northern mayors to co-operate on the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario. Her challenges here are significant, though perhaps not as significant as her political challenges. Some expect Wynne to significantly alter her cabinet. What does that mean for the North’s two cabinet ministers, Sudbury MPP and Northern and Development and Mines Minister Rick Bartolucci and Thunder Bay-Superior North MPP and Natural Resources Minister Michael Gravelle? And if development in the Ring of Fire is delayed, as mining industry observer Stan Sudol suspects, the best opportunity for job growth and economic development in First Nations areas is delayed ….”  Sourcemoremoremore (link to Wynne’s plan for Ontario’s North – alternate link here if previous link doesn’t work)
  • No sign on a government web site, but a Twitter user claims Cliffs is moving forward with its Environmental Assessment process  “Cliffs Submitted their final Amended Terms of Reference for the Cliffs Chromite Project few days ago.”  Sourcelink to Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency documents on the Cliffs project
  • Meanwhile, some organizational changes at Cliffs  “Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. announced that effective immediately, the Company’s Legal Department has been reorganized to better serve the evolving needs of Cliffs’ business. James Graham, formerly vice president, general counsel – global operations has been elected by Cliffs’ Board of Directors to become vice president and chief legal officer. He will continue to report to P. Kelly Tompkins, executive vice president – legal, government affairs and sustainability & president — Cliffs China. Cliffs’ day-to-day legal affairs will now be managed under Mr. Graham. This new structure is expected to result in a more integrated approach to the provision of legal services to operations, corporate as well as the company’s board of directors. With Cliffs since 2007, Mr. Graham has been involved in all of the Company’s major acquisitions and has over the past several years assumed greater levels of responsibility during his tenure. He received his J.D. from Case Western Reserve University, holds a B.A. degree from Hiram College and a M.A. degree from University of Michigan Graduate School. Carolyn Cheverine, formerly general counsel — corporate affairs and secretary, is promoted to vice president, general counsel and secretary. Ms. Cheverine has served the Cliffs’ board as secretary for the past year, has overall responsibility for providing legal advice and counsel to the accounting, treasury, tax and business development functions and provides oversight for Cliffs’ public reporting requirements. Ms. Cheverine will also be working closely with Cliffs’ Chief Risk Officer to enhance the company’s compliance efforts. She received her J.D. from University of Virginia and holds a B.S. degree in Economics from University of Pennsylvania. She will report directly to Mr. Graham. The Company also announced that Paul West is named Cliffs’ new director – corporate sustainability. Previously, Mr. West held a lead environmental role for Asia Pacific Iron Ore and worked closely with the management team to design and implement sustainability concepts that are operationally relevant and supported by key stakeholder groups. He will lead Cliffs’ sustainability program by creating a long-term vision to drive greater awareness and increased performance across all Cliffs’ businesses and functions worldwide. Mr. West replaces Ronald Nielsen, who is leaving the Company to pursue other endeavors. He will report to David Cartella – vice president, global environmental affairs, sustainability & counsel ….”  Source (company news release)
  • Senior provincial Ring of Fire official moving on  “The member of Ontario’s Ring of Fire Secretariat responsible for dealing with First Nations has stepped down from the position.  Deborah Richardson of Pabineau First Nation joined the Secretariat in August 2012, taking on the position vacated by Harvey Yesno when he stepped down to run for Nishnawbe Aski Nation grand chief. Richardson informed stake-holders in January that she was taking a two-year leave from the Ontario government. David De Launay will take over from Richardson on the Secretariat. De Launay has spent most of his career working within the Ontario government in Aboriginal Affairs and the Ministry of Natural Resources. He most recently worked as Assistant Deputy Minister of Special Projects, reviewing oil and gas pipeline development in the province.”  Source
  • Far north First Nation says “no, thanks” to aerial survey work  “A northwestern Ontario First Nation has placed a moratorium on geophysical surveying of its traditional territory. The council at Fort Severn has told the Ontario Geological Survey it’s formally withdrawing its permission until Ontario and Canada recognize a government-to-government relationship with First Nations. The letter to the Ontario Geological Survey from Fort Severn First Nation states, “The people of Fort Severn are dissatisfied with the slow reaction of the Canadian and Ontario governments to respond to the Idle No More movement and the hunger fast of Chief Theresa Spence. As a signatory of Treaty No. 9, Ontario has a responsibility to respond to the demands of the First Nations for a treaty relationship.” The letter, which was signed by Chief Joseph Crowe, adds, “The chief and council of Fort Severn Cree will revisit this decision on February 28, the next scheduled meeting of the First Nations leadership and Canada. If the people of Fort Severn are satisfied that progress has been made at this meeting, this moratorium will be lifted.” ‘Open the door for whoever wants to come in’ CBC News was unable to reach Chief Crowe for comment but one member of the Fort Severn council said gathering data about resources could cause problems for his community in the future. “After the air survey is done, whatever they find is published,” Angus Miles said. “It’s gonna be available to everybody. That’s one of the biggest concerns we have. It’s just gonna open the door for whoever wants to come in.” A spokesperson for the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines told CBC News the ministry has instructed the contractor it hired to conduct aerial surveys over Fort Severn to suspend work until further notice ….”  Sourcemore
  • Ring of Fire mention in significant Conference Board of Canada report in mining in Canada  “Overall metal and non-metallic mineral production is expected to grow by 91% from 2011 to 2020. With a compound annual growth rate of 7.5%, says a new report by the Conference Board of Canada. The annual gross domestic product of mining in the North, which was C$4.4 billion in 2011, is expected to reach C$8.5 billion in 2020, according to the report, The Future of Mining in Canada’s North. This forecast assumes the current business environment in the North will be similar throughout the forecast period, with its current taxation and regulatory regimes and its current trend in addressing infrastructure and skilled labor constraints …. “The Ring of Fire in Northern Ontario also holds greater potential than what is currently project. Similarly, the territories have a number of promising sites that could be developed over and above those included in the outlook. Important and undeveloped mineral deposits such as uranium, diamonds, and gold still remain in various Northern regions of Canada,” said the Conference Board of Canada.”  Sourcemore (In Support of Mining blog) – more – Conference Board of Canada summary of report here – Conference Board news release here – Conference Board report here

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 11 Jan-1 Feb 13 (29 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.

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