Ring of Fire News


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

Ring of Fire News – 29 Mar 13

  • Have a great Easter holiday!
  • Bob Rae:  Integrity Commissioner says I’m good to go negotiating for First Nations  “The federal conflict of interest commissioner has cleared interim Liberal leader Bob Rae, who is about to step down from that post and become an ordinary MP, to serve as a chief negotiator for First Nations in Ontario on sustainable development issues.  Rae said he does not yet have a formal offer to take on this new role, but has explored the possibility with chiefs and confirmed to Postmedia News that the federal ethics watchdog, Mary Dawson, sent him a letter earlier in March with guidelines on how to proceed.  Rae said the letter spelled out her interpretation of the law, which he accepts and supports.  “The principle of the (Conflict of Interest) Act is a member of Parliament is allowed to carry on their life,” Rae said in a telephone interview Monday. “I’ve made my living as a mediator and an arbitrator for a number of years before I was elected to Parliament – and as a lawyer – so it’s not unusual for MPs to have a law practice or to have a mediation practice. So that’s the principle that’s applied.”  He added that he would disclose any income or financial interests that come in from outside of Parliament, while respecting his duties as an MP. Rae will end his term as Liberal interim leader when a new permanent leader is named April 14.  “The other side of the coin is you’re not allowed to use your position as an MP to promote someone else’s private interests or your own private interests, and again the law is very clear on that,” Rae said.  He also noted that the role he envisions doesn’t relate to federal government relations with First Nations, but rather to negotiations with the provincial government on greater revenue-sharing and environmental protection for northern mining projects as part of a development plan known as the Ring of Fire ….”  Sourcemore
  • Green group calls for mediation in Ring of Fire  “Just as the federal government strives to speed up environmental reviews of major mining and energy projects, approvals for the giant Ring of Fire proposal in Northern Ontario are getting increasingly tangled.  On Monday, a key environmental group asked for provincial government mediation on how Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. plans to develop a giant chromite deposit in the fragile muskeg of the James Bay lowlands.  The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society says Cleveland-based Cliffs is dramatically changing its plans for a mine without properly consulting with the public.  “Several major alterations have been incorporated at the last minute and without the benefit of public scrutiny,” the Wildlands League chapter of CPAWS says in a letter to Ontario Environment Minister Jim Bradley.  The letter says Cliffs is backing away from a long-term plan to do a combination of open-pit mining and underground mining, opting to stick with only open pit.  It also notes Cliffs is conidering only a single route – a north-south road that would be heavily subsidized – to transport chromite ore out of the area, instead of considering other ways, such as an east-west corridor that could link first nations to much-needed infrastructure.  At stake is the framework Cliffs has set up for Ontario regulators to examine the environmental implications of its proposal ….”  Sourceletter to Ontario’s Minister of the Environment (PDF)
  • Cliffs sells off some Zenyatta  “Cliffs Natural Resources Exploration Inc. (“CNRE”), an affiliate of Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (NYSE: CLF) (Paris: CLF) (“Cliffs”), announces that it has sold 1,540,000 common share purchase warrants (the “Warrants”) of Zenyatta Ventures Ltd. (“Zenyatta”), representing approximately 3% of the issued and outstanding securities of Zenyatta on a partially diluted basis. The Warrants were sold by CNRE by way of a private purchase agreement.  Following the sale of the Warrants, Cliffs (and its affiliates) owns a total of 5,175,000 shares of Zenyatta, representing approximately 11% of Zenyatta’s outstanding shares, and 1,660,000 common share purchase warrants; 660,000 of which entitle the holder to acquire one common share of Zenyatta for $1.00 until June 23, 2013, and 1,000,000 of which entitle the holder to acquire one common share of Zenyatta for $1.50 until December 23, 2015 …. “  Source
  • Calls for telecommunications infrastructure around the Ring of Fire  “Greenstone wants improved telecommunications across the region, especially in and around the Ring of Fire.  Greenstone mayor Renald Beaulieu and councillors from that municipality held a special meeting at the Victoria Inn Tuesday. The meeting featured representatives from several Ontario ministries including the Ministry of Natural Resources and Northern Development and Mines.  One of the meeting’s talking points included a proposed $3.9 million investment to improve telecommunication infrastructure in the region. The upgrades would include the installation of additional fibre and networking equipment in order to improve Internet access in the area.  The upgrades would also provide the capacity necessary at Nakina to support a broadband expansion to the Ring of Fire and would also allow remote First Nations to have greater Internet access.  But online access is one of four priorities the municipality is pushing for. Accessibility, power and people round out the other three.  Beaulieu said they are looking for partners to fund these projects including the province ….”  Sourcemore from the Greenstone conferencemore
  • Meanwhile, Fort William First Nation hosts mining conference, too  “Predictions of a mining boom in Northwestern Ontario have been brewing for a decade or more.  With the Ring of Fire ready to roll in the next five years, and several other mines set to come on stream in the next 20 years, Fort William First Nation wants to ensure its residents are ready to capitalize.  On Monday the community, situated to Thunder Bay’s south, hosted the Fort William First Nation Mining Conference, promoting its vision of becoming a mining hub for Aboriginal communities in Ontario’s north and trying to forge the necessary partnerships to make it happen.  Representatives from several mining giants, including Cliff’s Natural Resources and Noront, were on hand outlining their plans in the region, giving an overview of the types of jobs that will become available when the work begins ….”  Source
  • Noront’s reaction to the federal budget  “Noront Resources, as a development stage mining company focused on the development of its Eagle’s Nest Mine within the Ring of Fire (James Bay Lowlands of Northern Ontario), is encouraged with the Federal Government’s commitment of support for the Ring of Fire and the mining industry.  The Economic Action Plan announced on March 21, 2013 states that the Federal Government has budgeted $4.4 million over three years for the Ring of Fire’s Capacity Building Initiative through the Federal Government’s Responsible Resource Development Plan. The Initiative, operated under the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario (“FedNor”), provides targeted support to communities directly adjacent to the Ring of Fire. The funding is available for activities such as business skills development, strategic business planning and Aboriginal youth engagement which are designed to ensure that First Nations benefit fully from resource development opportunities associated with Ring of Fire projects.  “It is clear after reading the Economic Action Plan that the Minister responsible for FedNor and the Ring of Fire, Tony Clement, and the Federal Government have listened to our ideas based upon our experiences in the Ring of Fire,” said Chairman and Interim CEO of Noront Resources, Paul Parisotto. Mr. Parisotto added: “We would like to thank the Government for addressing the needs of our industry alongside the legitimate concerns of our First Nations neighbours and partners.” Mr. Parisotto further added: “The mining industry has proven it is a strong contributor to Canada’s long-term growth and prosperity, and continued investment by all stakeholders will allow the true growth potential of the industry, including the Ring of Fire, to be realized.”  Noront Resources plans to begin mine development in 2015 from one of Canada’s highest-grade nickel, copper, platinum group elements discoveries and be in commercial production by 2017.  Noront also places great importance in its relationship with Canada’s First Nations, seeing them as long-term partners. Noront has established and implemented a comprehensive community-engagement programme to benefit the First Nations communities near the Ring of Fire. Recently Noront was awarded the Mining Magazine 2012 Editor’s award for corporate social and environmental responsibility. Noront has recently entered into a partnership with the Matawa First Nations and Confederation College to support training initiatives for the local communities. Noront also supports youth educational camps which are held in the communities each year.  “Noront is here for the long-haul and want to be recognized as a good corporate citizen”, Parisotto finishes. “We look forward to continuing our good working relationships and partnerships with the public, our First Nations neighbours and our governments.” ….”  Source
  • More calls for all-season roads  “Weather conditions that were more typical for northwestern Ontario created a better winter season for communities that depend on the winter road network. But while those served by the winter roads say it has been successful this year, First Nations leaders are still pushing for all-season road access.  Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief Harvey Yesno said that until this winter it had been several years since all remote communities that rely on winter roads for transportation were able to receive most of their fuel, building supplies and other materials over winter roads, because the weather has been too mild.  “Last year was a bad year, a couple of years there we just didn’t [get anything],” he said.  “It caused … a financial havoc for communities because they [end up having] to fly in the fuel and goods and services.”  And there are still the tragedies that occur as people attempt to traverse the ice that may or may not be ready to bear weight.  Despite this year’s generally better weather conditions, one person who travels the winter road regularly said early snowfalls initially left the ice weak on some lakes. As a result, two people died while operating grooming machines that plunged through the ice, said Leo Anderson, who works in building maintenance for the Keewaytinook Okimakanak tribal council.  “If there’s too much snow before we get ice, then we … have a couple of problems,” he added. “We lost two people, which was terrible.”  Grand Chief Yesno said he expects the seasonal roads will continue to be unreliable in the years ahead.  “The ultimate goal is all-weather roads, eventually, over time,” he said ….”  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-28 Mar 13 (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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Ring of Fire News – March 22, 2013

  • Budget 2013:  Ring of Fire mention …. “…. Responsible Resource Development – Major economic projects are an important source of development and job creation in all regions of Canada. Our diverse and abundant natural resource sector is an asset that benefits all Canadians. Natural resources account for 15 per cent of our gross domestic product and 50 per cent of our exports. Over the next 10 years, more than $650 billion in new investment is expected from more than 600 major resource projects planned across Canada. Meeting global demand for natural resources through responsible development will create jobs and benefit all Canadians. The resource sector offers particular benefits for Canada’s North. The Government is improving the Northern regulatory system and taking other important steps to support resource development in the North.   To maximize the value that Canada draws from our natural resources, Economic Action Plan 2012 introduced significant system-wide improvements to achieve the goal of “one project, one review” in a clearly defined time period, streamlined the review process for major economic projects, enhanced consultation with Aboriginal peoples, and strengthened environmental protection and pipeline and marine safety. As an example of this commitment to maximize the benefits derived from natural resources, the Government is providing $4.4 million over three years to the Ring of Fire Capacity Building Initiative, through the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario. This initiative will provide targeted support to communities directly adjacent to the Ring of Fire for activities such as business skills development, strategic business planning and Aboriginal youth engagement, to ensure that First Nations benefit fully from resource development opportunities associated with Ring of Fire projects. The Government’s comprehensive Responsible Resource Development plan will create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity while strengthening protection of the environment for future generations of Canadians ….”  http://www.budget.gc.ca/2013/doc/plan/chap3-2-eng.html#a0-Chapter-3.2:-Helping-Manufacturers-and-Businesses-Succeed-in-the-Global-Economy
  • ….. and reaction, from Thunder Bay-Atikokan independent MP Bruce Hyer, the Assembly of First Nations, the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, the Mining Association of Canada, the Chiefs of Ontario, and Sudbury NDP MP Glenn Thibeault.
  • Federal Court:  judicial review of Ring of Fire environmental assessment can continue ….  “…. Cliffs is in the early stages of planning a mining project for chromite at a proposed location in northern Ontario. The project is currently undergoing a coordinated environmental assessment under both the federal Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) and the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act. The proposed location of the mine is located within the traditional territory of the applicants and they expect to be impacted by the project.  A Comprehensive Study was commenced by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (Agency) on September 22, 2011. Section 25 of the CEAA provides the Agency with the discretion to recommend that the Minister refer the environmental assessment to a Review Panel; this can be done at any time during the process.  The applicants advocated for a Joint Review Panel as the best way to go forward with an assessment. At the commencement of the Comprehensive Study, no recommendation for a Review Panel was made. The applicants characterize the decision as an announcement that a Comprehensive Study process and not a Review Panel would be used to assess the project. That decision is the subject of the judicial review.  The First Nations applicants challenges the decision under review on two grounds: The first, is that the decision is contrary to the Crown’s constitutional duty to consult and accommodate the First Nations both in the process selected, and in how the process was selected. The second ground is that the Agency committed various errors of administrative law including, having failed to take relevant considerations into account, and made an unreasonable decision ….”  Federal Court Docket T-1820-11 (via miningwatch.ca)
  • ….. and reaction  “Matawa First Nations chiefs say they welcome the decision last week to deny motions filed by the federal government and Cliffs Natural Resources in the judicial review of the environmental assessment process in the Ring of Fire …. Chief Sonny Gagnon, of Aroland First Nation, said he and other chiefs want a full joint review panel at which members could speak and hear presentations about the impact on the environment of mining the Ring of Fire.  The federal government has agreed to a process called a comprehensive review, but Gagnon said that is essentially a review on paper, not a thorough assessment ….”  Sourcemore
  • Court of Appeal for Ontario:  Province, indeed, can take up lands in Treaty 3 territory for forestry  “…. Question One: Does Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Ontario have the authority within that part of the lands subject to Treaty 3 that were added to Ontario in 1912, to exercise the right to “take up” tracts of land for forestry, within the meaning of Treaty 3, so as to limit the rights of the plaintiffs to hunt or fish as provided for in Treaty 3? …. The answer to Question One is “yes” ….”  Source (text of decision)
  • …. and the reaction, from the Chiefs of Ontario, Trapper J.B. Fobister, Grassy Narrows First Nation and Rubicon Minerals (with its own court proceedgings underway regarding consultation to access FN traditional territory)
  • …. as well as one lawyer’s “not necessarily a bad outcome”  “A strategist and lawyer argues the recent court ruling against Grassy Narrows should actually be considered a victory for First Nations.  On Monday, Ontario’s Court of Appeal said the provincial government has the authority to issue logging permits on Grassy Narrows traditional territory, overturning a previous Superior Court decision that had sided with the First Nation.   But lawyer Bill Gallagher said the ruling also defines Ontario’s duty to consult with First Nations on the use of traditional land, and sets out “major obligations” for the Crown — a clarification he said has been missing until now.  “I think it’s a significant win,” Gallagher said, pointing to the court decision’s wording about how the province must use “honourable management” when dealing with traditional First Nations territories.  The ruling states that Ontario “cannot take up lands so as to deprive the First Nation signatories of a meaningful right to harvest in their traditional territories.” It also says the government must consult with First Nations ….”  Source
  • Cliffs seeks deal with Ontario ASAP ….  “The point man for Cliffs Natural Resources’ holdings in the Ring of Fire understands a change of government can slow negotiations.  But Bill Boor is looking to sign a “definitive document” with the province soon so his company can begin developing its Black Thor deposit …. Last May, when Cliffs announced plans to build a $1.8-billion ferrochrome processing plant at the former Moose Mountain Mine, near Capreol, it signed an agreement of terms, which Boor calls “essentially a non-binding tertiary agreement.  “Cliffs said, ‘ You know what? We have enough confidence that we’ll be able to turn this into a definitive document, that we want to clear it up and say we’re going to Sudbury.’ ”  Cliffs worked with the province from May of last year until former Premier Dalton McGuinty announced his resignation in October to try to get that definitive document in place …. Boor and his company understand Wynne and her government need time to get settled in.  “In their new capacity, they haven’t been in the middle of the complexity of this project and this deal, and so they need to get a chance to get up to speed,” he said.  “However, it has become a bottleneck for moving the project forward.” ….”  Source
  • …. while Cliffs, KWG awaiting Office of Mining and Lands Commissioner on claims on land destined for a rail link to the Ring of Fire  “Two companies with high stakes in the rich Ring of Fire are awaiting a decision from a two-person tribunal that’s likely months away — and which could set a precedent when it is delivered.  The tribunal from the Mining and Lands Commissioner sat for seven days of hearings last month, listening to arguments from three lawyers from each of Cliffs Natural Resources and Canada Chrome Corporation, a subsidiary of KWG Resources Inc.  The application from Cliffs seeks an order for the Ministry of Natural Resources to grant an easement to Clevelandbased Cliffs, under the Public Lands Act, to lands claimed by CCC ….”  Source
  • Matawa Chiefs meet behind closed doors with Minister of Northern Development and Mines  “First Nation chiefs meeting in the city to discuss the Ring of Fire development are not speaking to the media.  Delegates at the annual Matawa First Nations gathering at the Valhalla Inn met with Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael Gravelle Wednesday. After attempting to speak to officials about the meeting, local media were told that none of the chiefs wished to talk publicly about what was discussed.  Following the meeting, Gravelle said he was glad to sit down and meet the chiefs but wouldn’t go into any specifics of what was discussed.  He did reveal that the meeting focused heavily on the Ring of Fire development ….”  Source
  • Greenstone selling itself as a good way into the Ring of Fire  “The Grow Greenstone Expo, hosted by the Greenstone Labour Market Working Group will be taking place at the Victoria Inn, on Monday and Tuesday (March 25-26, 2013). Featuring over 60 exhibitor booths and an impressive lineup of speakers and dignitaries, the sold out Grow Greenstone Expo is the region’s first business-to-business, workforce attraction expo to date. Offering both individuals and businesses the opportunity to learn and discover where to position themselves for success in the expanding mining sector.  The opening ceremonies will feature addresses by Member of Parliament and former Ontario Premier Bob Rae, Mayor of Greenstone Renald Beaulieu, Ring of Fire Coordinator Dr. Christine Kaszycki, and Matawa Ring of Fire Coordinator Raymond Ferris ….”  News releaseConference pageAgenda
  • Matawa opens environmental research office  “The nine First Nations that make up the Matawa group in northern Ontario are moving ahead with their own environmental research about the impacts of mining.  The massive Ring of Fire mineral deposit is in their traditional territory — and people want to know what changes mining will bring, said David Paul Achneepineskum, Mattawa’s chief executive officer.  “We want to get our people ready,” Achneepineskum said at the grand opening of the Four Rivers Matawa Environmental Services Group office in Thunder Bay ….”  Source
  • Wawatay columnist:  Glass is half full  “There are many success stories across Canada when it comes to resource development agreements and partnerships between First Nations, companies and government. Most non-Native people don’t realize this. Even in my home community of Attawapiskat negotiations in general between my people and Debeers has benefited many. The process is obviously not perfect but at the very least, the company, First Nation leadership and governments have bargained in good faith to make a very large project happen in the middle of pristine wilderness.  This is a big change for my people considering that we were largely forgotten and through a process of assimilation and marginalization, my grandfathers and great grandfathers had little choice but to live off a limited amount of land and survive through hunting and gathering ….”  Source
  • ipolitics.ca columnist:  Glass is half empty  “Brace yourself for the Indian Wars, Stephen Harper style.  This federal government doesn’t give a flying fornication about indigenous issues, and the way the stars are lining up, there will be a price to pay for their disdain.  The Indian Wars of history were actually comprised of 40 major military actions against American aboriginals under the Indian Removal Act of 1830. Dropping the John Wayne factor from the chronicle, they amounted to a continental eviction notice. It was served on indigenous peoples by wave after wave of European settlers and squatters backed up by the U.S. Cavalry.  In those days, south-side, the gun-to-the-head choices facing indigenous peoples were assimilation, forced relocation to reservations, flight or resistance ….”  Source
  • (Speaking of protests) Judge tells Idle No More protesters blocking access to Manitoba mine to get outta there  ” A mining company in Manitoba has won an injunction against aboriginal Idle No More protesters.  HudBay Minerals Inc. is suing the Mathias Colomb Cree Nation over rallies held this year that it claims blocked the entrance to its Lalor Lake site.  Chief Justice Glenn Joyal of Court of Queen’s Bench has ruled protesters can’t block roads into the site, where a gold, zinc and copper mine is being developed.  Joyal says he’s confident RCMP will enforce the injunction with arrests, if necessary ….”   Sourcemoremoremore

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-22  Mar 13 (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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Ring of Fire News – March 15, 2013

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-15  Mar 13 (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

Ring of Fire News – 8 Mar 13

  • Bob Rae as Chief Negotiator for Ring of Fire First Nations?  The
    Globe & Mail’s take
    , Postmedia News’ take and In Support of Mining blog’s take
  • Ontario’s Premier, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Minister of Northern Development and Mines meet Matawa Chiefs  “…. This historic meeting between Matawa Chiefs, Premier Kathleen Wynne, Minister Michael Gravelle and Minister David Zimmer was
    productive and part of an ongoing constructive dialogue with First Nation communities.   The new Ontario government is committed to
    working together on a regional framework and with individual communities to deal with issues such as socio-economic supports, long-term environmental monitoring, training and employment opportunities and infrastructure development ….” 
    Source (Government of Ontario news release)
  • Ontario Creates Cabinet Committee for Northern Ontario  “The new Ontario government has created a new Northern cabinet committee, chaired by Bill Mauro, MPP for Thunder Bay – Atikokan.  The committee will address the complex needs of Northern Ontario, including job creation, revitalizing transportation infrastructure and improving vital access to the Ring of Fire. The committee will also help oversee the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario ….”  Source (Government of Ontario news release) – List of who’s on the Committee
  • Who WASN’T Speaking at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) meeting this past week?  Federal Ministerial Lead on the Ring of Fire Tony Clement (more here, here and here).  Federal Natural Resources Minister Joe OliverParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Greg Rickford (more here).
  • Confederation College-Noront-Matawa Training Partnership Deal Also Signed at PDAC Meet  “Matawa First Nations Management’s Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment and Training Services, Noront Resources Ltd. and Confederation College of Applied Arts and Technology formally signed a Memorandum of Understanding today at the Aboriginal Forum Reception at the Prospectors and  Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) annual convention and mining investment show.  This agreement reinforces a commitment to work collaboratively to expand opportunities for the development of a highly skilled aboriginal workforce for mining activity associated with the Eagles Nest project of Noront Resources Ltd. in the Ring of Fire ….”  Source (joint news release) – moremore
  • Bold Ventures/KWG – Bold Ventures Ready to Start Drilling in Ring o’ Fire  “Bold Ventures Inc. says drilling on the Koper Lake Project in the “Ring of Fire” area in northwestern Ontario will begin  within one  week.  The company announced Wednesday that three drills provided by Cyr International Drilling and Orbit Garant Drilling have been mobilized to the area.  They are scheduled to carry out approximately 6,000 meters of diamond drilling on a number of Nickel-Copper and Chromite targets with a $3 million budget.  A camp to service the program is being constructed by Haveman Brothers  Forestry Services.  The Marten Falls First Nation recently issued a land use permit for the camp ….”  Sourcemoremoremore
  • Cliffs Continuing to Work Toward Road to Ring o’ Fire  “There’s a long road ahead to get to the Ring of Fire.  At 340 kilometres, a proposed road to mineral deposits in the James Bay Lowlands has led to Cliffs Natural Resources filing for 123 sand and gravel permits along the road in order to build it.  ”In my experience that is very rare I don’t think it’s happened before,” Ministry of Natural Resources Gary Davies said of the permits filed by Cliffs in that latter part of 2012.  But while the permits have been accepted by the ministry they can’t be approved until an environmental assessment of the project is complete, a process that is just beginning ….”  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 14 Feb-8 Mar 13 (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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Ring of Fire News – March 1, 2013

  • Ontario’s Finance Minister Charles Sousa on Ring of Fire, road/rail  “…. “In order to succeed in maximizing the value of the Ring of Fire and the tremendous potential that exists here in the North, we have to make some investments,” he said via teleconference from Sault Ste. Marie.  “Negotiations are ongoing with proponents. What’s going to happen here in the North is going to have tremendous impact on the province and throughout Canada. That’s a $2 billion to $3 billion investment a portion of which the province is looking to invest as well.”  A recently released study concluded railway infrastructure, and not an all-season road, is the best option for Ring of Fire development. That study pointed out that while there is a more significant initial investment required for rail, the long-term cost savings make it a more economical option than an all-weather road.  Despite that study’s findings, Sousa said an all-weather road will be necessary in order to ship ore from the Ring of Fire. And that’s just one of the many issues they have to face.  “It’s not just the road.  that’s part of the issue that’s before us,” he said. “There will also be issues about maybe having a railway. The other one is electricity. There*s many factors and those discussions are underway.  I*m hopeful we*ll have some consequence that will provide important investment in the North to maximize the potential.” ….” Source
  • Ontario’s Aboriginal Affairs Minister David Zimmer on the Ring of Fire, resource revenue sharing  “…. There are resource benefits, there are revenue sharing issues; the important thing is that the parties sit down and talk about benefit sharing, revenue sharing, environmental issues, educational issues. When there*s a piece of economic development, there are so many spin-off effects of it. You have to get everybody together at the table and develop the resource in a collective way and make sure that everybody shares fairly in the rewards of the activity, and that might be benefits, a host of things …. The ministry, what its really equipped to do, is to facilitate a whole lot of conversations and meetings, and to help the people get together and work through their issues. In some ways the ministry is a facilitator. Sometimes industry may come to us and say we have an idea for development, can you tell us who we should talk to and how we should get started. Maybe the Aboriginal community calls us with an idea for development and says can you help us connect with finance people, or technical people. So we bring the folks together and have a talk about it.”  Source
  • Financial Post Column:  Getting rid of the Far North Act’ll help the Ring of Fire more than having a federal lead minister
  • $15M loan to Noront for Ring of Fire exploration  “Noront Resources says it has closed a $15-million (U.S.) loan facility to help further the development of its Eagle’s Nest project in Ontario’s far northern Ring of Fire mineral zone.  In a Wednesday release, the company said the deal with Resource Capital Fund is a one-year bridge loan, which would automatically roll into a convertible loan next year if not repaid prior to its maturity date.  The proceeds of the facility will be used to further the development of the company’s advanced stage Eagle’s Nest nickel, copper, platinum, palladium project; for working capital and for corporate requirements, Noront said.”  Source (In Support of Mining blog) – moremore (company news release)
  • Ontario NDP:  If ya mine it here, then process it here, dammit!  “The provincial NDP wants to see a vast mineral deposit in northern Ontario used to benefit the province’s steel industry rather than offshore interests.  The so-called Ring of Fire mining area in the James Bay Lowlands is believed to contain about a quarter of the world’s chromite, the main ingredient in stainless steel.  American company Cliffs Natural Resources is the biggest player in the Ring of Fire. Its most recent investor update shows nearly half of the raw ore mined in northern Ontario is destined for China, while the rest will be shipped to a proposed smelter in Sudbury.  NDP MPP Gilles Bisson said Ontario should develop its own stainess steel industry, instead of sending the raw ingredients overseas ….”   Source
  • Fort William First Nation hosting mining conference 25-26 March 2013 – more detail at the conference web page here
  • (Not exactly Ring of Fire) Latest roadblock of winter road into DeBeers Victor Mine over – more here.

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-28 Feb 13 (73 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

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