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

Ring of Fire News – August 30, 2013

  • Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne travelling through Sudbury, Kenora, Thunder Bay and Fort Severn ….
  • …. and you KNOW the Ring o’ Fire’s going to come up in her travels  – in Sudbury, for example:  “…. She was asked what the province is doing to move forward the Cliffs Natural Resources chromite project in the Ring of Fire region of Northern Ontario.  The company put its environmental assessment on hold in June, citing a lack of progress at the provincial level regarding not only environmental issues, but a deal with regards to a transportation corridor and energy prices.  Wynne said she’s placing her trust in former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Frank Ioacobucci, who was appointed by the province back in July to lead discussions with the Chiefs of the Matawa Tribal Council on the Ring of Fire.  More specifically, he’ll address environmental protection and monitoring, regional infrastructure planning and development, resource revenue sharing and social and economic supports.  “If we don’t get those protections and processes right at the beginning stages, we will pay for that at the end,” Wynne said. “There will be time constraints and there will be costs at the other end if we don’t do that work up front.” ….” – more from the Sudbury stop here
  • Federal Ring o’ Fire Minister Greg Rickford:  we’ll get ‘er all sorted out  “Kenora MP Greg Rickford says the Ring of Fire mining project is for Northern Ontario, what the oil sands are for Alberta, and isn’t worried by disputes on how the project’s environmental impact should be assessed.  “There has been some dispute over whether there should be an environmental assessment or a joint review panel, those issues will be resolved by the parties themselves or the courts,” said Rickford ….”
  • U of Toronto anthropology expert on NWT & training“…. Lindsay Bell, a university of Toronto researcher, looked at mine training programs in the Northwest Territories. She says after being trained, few aboriginal people found jobs in the mines …. Bell said …. the (federal) money (announced earlier this month) geared to training could be better spent somewhere else.  “[The federal government should] put a larger emphasis on infrastructure development and other educational opportunities so that First Nations people can really have the choice of how they want to live in the future,” she said.”
  • Mining analyst commentary  “The recent announcement by American-based Cliffs Natural Resources to temporarily halt its chromite mining project in Ontario’s Ring of Fire camp was met with flying accusations of fault by many politicians, affected stakeholders, environmental non-government agencies and First Nations communities.  There certainly is plenty of blame to go around, including on the company itself — stubborn opposition to a more thorough environmental assessment demanded by First Nations, Cliffs’ inability to finance the project at the present time and, most importantly, a currently depressed metals market.  However, this might be a great opportunity to scrutinize the entire development and decide if Ontario has leveraged as many economic and value-added benefits as possible during the current commodity super-cycle and why a tiny country like Finland has been able to do much more with a significantly smaller and lower quality chromite deposit of its own ….”
  • Remember the court case where First Nations wanted to block the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Act (FIPPA) because of a lack of consultation by Canada?  Federal Court of Canada says….  full speed ahead, FIPPA (decision, PDF) This from the Assembly of First Nations on the decision, and this from the Green Party of Canada.

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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