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#RingOfFire (#RoF) News – September 10, 2017


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#RingOfFire (#RoF) News – August 9, 2016

  • Hope continues to spring eternal … Noront expects Ring of Fire road funding announcement soon — With a funding announcement for a permanent Ring of Fire road expected shortly, Toronto-based Noront Resources is enlarging its land package in the James Bay camp and is devising a multiple mine development plan … “
  • … as Ontario’s Premier fans out across the north “Premier Kathleen Wynne will visit schools, hospitals, businesses, Indigenous communities and other groups across Northern Ontario from August 6 to 12 to listen to local ideas and highlight how the government is supporting economic growth and job creation in the North …”
  • More on the Noront front “Noront buys ‘small, but strategic’ Ring of Fire claim — Mining company Noront has made what it’s calling a small, but strategic, acquisition in the Ring of Fire.  Noront bought out the majority of MacDonald Mines properties in the James Bay Lowlands mineral deposit.  The company says it now controls 75 per cent of the staked claims in the region.  The government is studying a plan for a road to the proposed mine and First Nations in the area …”Canadian Mining JournalNoront company statementMacDonald Mines company statement
  • One analyst’s take from last week … “What’s Noront Resources Ltd Downside After Today’s (3 Aug) Huge Decline?”
  • … and today  “The stock of Noront Resources Ltd gapped up by $0.03 today and has $1.25 target or 191.00% above today’s $0.43 share price …”
  • Meanwhile, KWG draws the eye a bit – on YouTube, anyway “You know how sometimes you see something and it leaves you scratching your head, so you go back (in the case of a video you found on the Internet, let’s say) and watch it again, just to make sure you weren’t hallucinating?  com came across just that sort of thing …  Junior miner KWG Resources is selling the Ring of Fire deposit in northwestern Ontario, of which it has several claims in the still-undeveloped chromite hotspot, using girls in bikinis. Yes, girls in bikinis selling a mining development …”here’s the video in question from KWG’s YouTube channel, as well as more from Resource Clips , Canadian Mining Journal and some discussion over at an Agoracom online forum
  • In other, less controversial KWG news … KWG Files Notice of Sale From Control of Debut Diamonds –KWG Resources Inc. has filed a Notice of Sale from Control with respect to all of its 144,630,000 common shares of affiliate Debut Diamonds Inc. The notice provides that the shares will be sold either in whole or in part and either privately or through the facilities of the Canadian Securities Exchange stock market …”
  • Not strictly #RoF, but of note, some analysis from TVO’s Steve Paikin about his read of the mood in bits of northern Ontario: “… one does wonder whether northern Ontario is going through its own version of America’s Tea Party, or Trumpism, or the United Kingdom’s Brexit. Too many people have lost faith in the established institutions and simply want something else. Premier Wynne will be heading to Kenora soon, where she’ll find some of her citizens who want to join Manitoba. They already live and play in Manitoba’s time zone, are so much closer to Winnipeg than Toronto, and feel ever so distant from Ontario’s decision-makers. And others in the north want to separate from the rest of Ontario altogether, creating their own province. Ironically, with the price of what’s in the ground fetching not nearly the high prices they once did, many observers would say this is a particularly foolish time, economically speaking, for the north to separate. But as we saw with the Brexit debate and are seeing with Donald Trump’s ascendancy, these decisions are often not made for logical reasons. They’re emotional. They’re experienced at a gut level …”

 

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#RingOfFire (RoF) News – October 16, 2014


 

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Ring of Fire (RoF) News – October 2, 2014

  • “Premier Kathleen Wynne isn’t wasting time worrying about Cleveland-based Cliffs Natural Resources looking to possibly sell key assets in the Ring of Fire. Cliffs will make its own business decisions and the Government of Ontario doesn’t have any control over that, said Wynne. “There are many companies that are interested in the development of the Ring of Fire and we are going to be working with all of those companies that are interested,” Wynne told reporters after a cabinet meeting Thursday at the Willet Green Miller Centre at Laurentian University. At one time, Cliff had plans to open a chromite mine in the Ring of Fire, and ship the ore to a plant in Capreol for processing. That would have created as many as 600 jobs in the Sudbury area. The premier and most members of her inner circle met at the session, at which ministers received mandate letters outlining the priorities for their ministries. High on the priority list for Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael Gravelle (see Mandate Letter here) was developing the Ring of Fire, rich chromite deposits located 500 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay. Gravelle was instructed to continue to collaborate directly with other ministers, First Nations and key stakeholders to develop the mineral-rich area. That includes establishing the Ring of Fire development corporation that was promised to be set up within 60 days of the Liberal government’s throne speech delivered in July …..”
  • Who else is tasked with working with RoF as a priority? Ontario’s Minister of Aboriginal Affairs – this priority, from his Mandate Letter:   “Collaborating on Ring of Fire Negotiations – Working with the Minister of Northern Development and Mines and with First Nation communities on the next phase of negotiations under the Ring of Fire Framework Agreement our government signed earlier this year. Your goal is to ensure benefits sharing and a regional approach that respects community-based planning ….”
  • …. not to mention the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry – from his Mandate Letter“….Working with the Minister of Northern Development and Mines and the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change to support robust and comprehensive environmental assessments and planning related to projects in the Ring of Fire region ….”
  • …. as well as the Minister of Environment and Climate Change (link to Mandate Letter):  “….Continuing to work on decisions relating to environmental assessments associated with projects in the Ring of Fire region. You will do so by working with the ministers of Northern Development and Mines, Aboriginal Affairs, and Natural Resources and Forestry. This will include ensuring that the regional and cumulative impacts of proposed development are considered ….”
  • Meanwhile, according to APTN, “In Toronto, nine chiefs from the Matawa Tribal Council held an emergency meeting with the province this week. This past March, the province and First Nation Ring of Fire chiefs signed an historic framework agreement with the province. But since then, things have gone sour.” (video)
  • “The Ontario Liberals may have won a majority in the June 12 election, but they don’t have a monopoly, says Andrea Horwath. Ontario Liberals have failed Northern Ontarians time and time again — especially in their slowness to develop the Ring of Fire — and the Ontario New Democrats can capitalize on that, said the NDP leader. Horwath spoke Sunday morning at NDP Northern Council 2014, a gathering of 60 or more MPPs, NDP candidates and party faithful …. Ontario saw the “sad result” of Liberal inaction recently when Cliffs Natural Resources indicated it was looking to sell its assets in the Ring of Fire, Horwath told delegates. “Instead of pulling out all the stops to build infrastructure, instead of getting revenue sharing agreements on track, instead of working with northerners, First Nations and industry partners to develop resources in the Ring of Fire, Premier Wynne’s government has taken a wait-and-see approach.” ….”
  • Part of mines minister Michael Gravelle’s response to Horvath:  “It is troubling to hear a leader of a major political party in Ontario speak with such a lack of understanding of the steps required in developing the Ring of Fire. What is specifically troubling, is that (NDP leader Andrea) Horwath does not seem to understand the complexity of this major economic opportunity for our province or respect the important work we have undertaken before ore extraction can actually begin. Our government is leading the way to drive development in the Ring of Fire. There is no question that over the past year, significant progress has been made. We have provided a $1-billion commitment to develop transportation infrastructure in the region; established a Ring of Fire Infrastructure Development Corporation within 60 days of forming our new government; and reached a historic agreement with the Chiefs of the Matawa Tribal Council that lays the groundwork for future discussions. Our government is proud of the work that we have accomplished so far …. While Ms. Horwath may be looking to score quick political points, I respectfully ask her to do her homework on a very complex project that is currently being developed in a smart, sustainable, collaborative way and represents a historic opportunity to affect positive economic outcomes for the region, Ontario and indeed all of Canada.”
  • Noront shares a “whazzup?”  “Noront Resources Ltd. is pleased to provide an update on its work plans for the winter 2014-15 season. Noront has agreed to support Marten Falls First Nation (MFFN) as the proponent of a winter road to access its Eagle’s Nest Mine in the Ring of Fire. MFFN has submitted a permit application to build a winter road from Marten Falls to Noront’s Esker camp where the Eagle’s Nest Mine will be located. This road will be used to transport bulk materials including fuel and heavy equipment, to be used for work on the existing airstrip and to help ensure that Noront is in position to initiate mining activities once the necessary approvals are in place. Work on the airstrip is planned for fall/winter 2014 and will be completed under an approved land use plan with Noront’s development partner Marten Falls Logistics (a 100%-owned entity of Marten Falls First Nation). As part of this project, the landing area will be cleared to its final dimensions for use as a winter air strip during the 2014/15 season rather than the previously used ice air strip constructed on Koper Lake. The airstrip will be upgraded for all-season use when waste rock aggregate is available from construction of the underground mine at Eagle’s Nest …. Noront is currently preparing an update to its 2012 Feasibility Study which is expected to be complete by the end of October. It is being prepared by Micon International based on detailed construction cost estimates provided by the companies contributing to Noront’s Eagle’s Nest project, a group of world class organizations ….”
  • Meanwhile, more analyst doom and gloom for Cliffs ….  “The vultures continue to circle around Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. looking to take advantage of a company desperate to raise enough cash to stay alive ….”
  • …. while Cliffs gets set to share more info later this month  “Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. Announces Quarterly Conference Call for Third-Quarter Financial Results on October 28, 2014 ….”
  • “KWG Resources Inc. announces that by mutual agreement of the parties, KWG and Bold Ventures Inc. have extended by 30 days, to October 30, 2014, the deadline by which KWG must provide Binding Notice 2. Pursuant to the Option Agreement between KWG and Bold, Section 3.1 provides that KWG must provide Binding Notice 2 by September 30, 2014 that it intends to make the $700,000 option payment due February 7, 2015 under the KWG/Bold Option Agreement and expend an aggregate of $8,000,000 on the property by March 31, 2015. If the Binding Notice 2 is not delivered, the Option is terminated ….”
  • A good question from a Northern Ontario think tank:  “What would a federally supported stainless steel industry mean for the Ring of Fire?”  “….The North now has all the ingredients in their backyard to make stainless steel, a uniqueness not found anywhere else in the world. How incredulous would it be for Canada to be the only G8 country not to have a stainless steel industry when the chromite, nickel and iron are all in one place? Although the timeline for the eventual development of the Ring of Fire may be unknown, few would believe that $60-billion of known mineral wealth will stay in the ground for very long. One way to accelerate that extraction and to start generating wealth on three fronts, would be for our governments to invest in the development of a stainless steel industry. A stainless steel manufacturing plant would be a catalyst for accelerating investment in the Ring of Fire chromite development by providing a local market for the product. It would also ensure that the middle step of smelting chromite into ferrochrome would be done locally. An industrial hat-trick if you will ….”

 

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Ring of Fire News – 19 Jan 12

  • Editorial call for more all-season roads into the remote north (and not JUST for the Ring of Fire) following a fatal plane crash near North Spirit Lake.  “…. The accident comes within a week of Aboriginal leaders in Northern Ontario and Manitoba calling on their respective provincial governments to consider speeding up plans to increase the number of all-weather roads to remote, fly-in reserves. It could be money well spent. Economically it could vastly reduce the cost of goods and services on the reserves, along with lessening the need for harrowing wintertime flights into and out of the communities. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be solely on the backs of taxpayers. The roads, which NAN Grand Chief Stan Beardy said should run along the east-west corridor, could also be vital links for the Ring of Fire and other mining projects. Certainly, with billions at stake, the mining companies can be expected to contribute heavily to the construction of the roads, while helping to improve the lives of those whose traditional lands they’ll be developing.”  Source
  • Ring of Fire helping Thunder Bay airport’s business  “2011 was the busiest year ever for Thunder Bay International Airport. The airport hosted 719,500 passengers, eclipsing the 2010 volume of 691,826 which represents a 4% increase year over year. The increased interest in the mining sector, and in particular the “Ring of Fire” appear to be the big factors in the increased growth …. “  Source
  • Rookie Conservative MPP for Nipissing, Vic Fideli, says Ring of Fire one of his big files  “…. the Ring of Fire. I work on this file a lot, because there are approximately 70 mining and manufacturing companies in the riding of Nipissing, and the Ring of Fire is the largest mining opportunity to come our way in a century, so I want to see that Nipissing is positioned well to take advantage of it. I talked to your paper before when I flew into the Ring of Fire. I am one of the rare few politicians who ever set foot in the Ring of Fire. When I flew in, a big smile came into my face when I saw the blue and white tent knowing that they are made in Rutherglen, in our riding at Canadian Tentex. They are responsible for building the town. Then as soon as I got off the helicopter I saw piles of drill rods and knew they were made in Powassan and half a dozen other places in and around North Bay. So this is our place. The Ring of Fire is where we need to be, we need North Bay to be there front and centre. So I spend a lot of time on that file, either mentally or meeting with organizations to move our agenda in that area ….”  Source
  • Ring of Fire Resources Inc. provides update on its projects Source (PDF table)
  • Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. …. announced that its Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend on the Company’s common shares of $0.28 per share. The cash dividend will be payable on March 1, 2012, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Feb. 15, 2012 ….”  Source
  • Anglo Swiss Resources Inc. announces the grant of 7,000,000 incentive stock options to purchase common shares of the Company at $0.10 per share for five (5) years to directors and officers of the Company. The grants are subject to acceptance by the TSX Venture Exchange. The Company has closed the private placement announced on November 7, 2011. Closing of the second and final tranche was announced on December 29, 2011. About Anglo Swiss: Anglo Swiss Resources Inc. controls a highly-prospective, Canadian precious and base metal exploration property portfolio which includes its flagship 100%-owned Kenville Gold Mine property in southeastern BC, as well as its 100%-owned Lansdowne House, Ring of Fire nickelcopper- PGE project in northwestern Ontario …. ”  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1 Dec 11-15 Jan 12 (PDF) here.  All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act.  We’re 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 – 9 Jan 12

  • While not in the Ring of Fire area, another court decision giving First Nations more say in development in their back yards.  “In a decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, released January 3, Madam Justice Brown ordered that Solid Gold Resources Corp. cannot carry on any further exploration activity on its claims block for 120 days, and that during this time the company and the Ontario Crown must engage with Wahgoshig in a process of meaningful consultation and accommodation about any such further exploration. She ordered that if this process is not productive, Wahgoshig can go back to court to seek an extension of the injunction. Solid Gold’s mining claims block is in the heart of Wahgoshig’s traditional territory, on land that is of significant importance to Wahgoshig. Solid Gold came onto this land and started drilling without any consultation or accommodation occurring first. The court decision clearly finds this to be wrong ….” First Nation news releaseCourt decision (HTML) – Court decision (PDF) – More more more – more
  • Premier following latest court decision:  up to businesses to consult with First Nations.  “…. Premier Dalton McGuinty would not comment directly on the ruling Thursday but he waved aside questions about whether this would make relations between First Nations and exploration companies more difficult. “There is an important legal obligation now placed on businesses to consult in a formal and thorough way,” he said after an announcement in Waterloo, Ont. “We need to get beyond the times where First Nation communities and the interests that they had in resources were given short shrift and were disrespected.” That obligation to consult, he added, is there “for a good reason.” “We fully expect that if businesses have an interest in pursuing these kinds of explorations, that they will consult.” ….”  Sourcealternate source if first link doesn’t work (PDF)
  • A former provincial energy minister-turned-consultant said First Nations will have the ultimate say on how the Ring of Fire mineral developments will unfold, and that includes the location of a proposed ferrochrome smelter. George Smitherman is pitching for the furnaces to be located in the northwestern Ontario municipality of Greenstone, and the village of Exton, which is already designated as a future ore transloading junction. Cliffs Natural Resources has maintained Sudbury is the frontrunner among four Northern Ontario communities to land the processing plant, and its 400-plus jobs, but only if provincial power rates are competitive with neighbouring jurisdictions. The international miner is expected to name the site for the plant sometime this year. “If the company persists in seeing the decision narrowly on the basis of power, then this has great project risk.” ….”  Source – A reminder:  Smitherman is working for the Municipality of Greenstone and Aroland First Nation trying to get a smelter into that part of northwestern Ontario.
  • Lakehead University economist worried about implications of Conference Board of Canada report for Thunder Bay’s port, Ring of Fire.  “The new report by the Conference Board of Canada titled Northern Assets: Transportation Infrastructure in Remote Communities on transportation in northern Canada provides a case study of Churchill Manitoba as a potential international gateway that may give the Port of Thunder Bay some cause for concern. The Port of Churchill and its Bay Line rail line play a key role in what is referred to as the Government of Manitoba’s Churchill Gateway System. Churchill could increase its role as a shipping hub by diversifying the range of agricultural products it handles and by increasing its share of Nunavut-bound freight—especially for mining projects. As well, climate change and melting sea ice is opening up the possibility of developing polar shipping lanes between Churchill, Asia, and Europe …. Alarm bells should be ringing in Thunder Bay given that this new strategy is not just a Manitoba government lobbying strategy but now also seems to have been given the blessing of the Conference Board of Canada. What’s next? A call for Federal government funding to build a rail link from Churchill to the Ring of Fire?”  Source Conference Board reportalternate report link if first link isn’t working (PDF)
  • Predictions (1)  Lakehead University economist:  “As 2012 dawns, Ontario’s Northwest begins another year of change and anticipation of change …. Despite the new knowledge economy, rocks and trees will still be important to the regional economy in 2012. However, despite the promise of the Ring of Fire, nothing substantial will happen without the cooperation of the First Nations, competitive energy prices and new transportation infrastructure ….”  Source
  • Predictions (2)  “…. Patrick Dillon, Business Manager of the Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario, said work is currently picking up in transportation, mining and utility projects. All areas of the province will be seeing growth, like the north, where mining is getting stronger, roads need to be built and the Ring of Fire has potential for huge growth. “We as industry partners are really going to have some forethought and discussion, basic understanding between us about the Ring of Fire. It’s pretty remote and it’s going to take a pretty major construction workforce to supply,” said Dillon ….”  Source
  • Ring of Fire junior miner, KWG Resources announced it’s raised $1.75 million through flow-through shares to help pay for exploration at its high grade chromium project in the James Bay lowlands. In a Dec. 30 release, the Montreal-based company said it’s using the proceeds to fund half of its current drilling program at the Big Daddy deposit, currently being conducted by Cliffs Chromite Far North, formerly Spider Resources. Of the 17,500,000 units issued at a price of $0.10 per unit, insiders of the company purchased 2,500,000 units, or 14 per cent of the offering.”  Source KWG news release
  • Noront Resources Ltd. is pleased to announce the completion of the private placement financing originally announced on November 29, 2011.  Noront has issued 4,073,800 total flow-through common shares (“Flow-Through Shares”) at a price of $0.86 per Flow-Through Share for gross proceeds of $3,503,468. Dundee Securities Ltd., acted as lead agent on behalf of a syndicate including Raymond James Ltd.  In connection with the Offering, the Agents received a cash commission equal to 5.0% of the gross proceeds raised under the Offering. All securities issued will be subject to a four month hold period under Canadian securities laws. The gross proceeds from the sale of the Flow-Through Shares will be used for Canadian Exploration Expenses (“CEE”), with the Company to use best efforts to qualify such CEE as “flow-through mining expenditures”, to fund ongoing exploration activities on the Company’s McFauld’s Lake project. Such CEE will be renounced in favour of the subscribers of the Flow-Through Shares effective on or before December 31, 2011 ….”  Source
  • Green Swan Capital Corp. has successfully secured financing to fund a mining joint venture it has been working on with Melkior Resources Inc.  The Ottawa capital pool company raised $647,019.98 via flow-through and cash financings. Flow-through financing included 1,807,846 shares at 13 cents per share, and the cash financing comprised 4,120,000 units at 10 cents a share. Last August, Green Swan announced it was looking to acquire an option to purchase up to a 70-per-cent interest in Melkior’s RiverBank and Broke Back claims in the Ring of Fire area of northern Ontario ….”  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1 Dec 11-6 Jan 12 (PDF) here.  All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act.  We’re 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 – 19 Dec 11

NOTE:  Ring of Fire News will be taking a holiday break, and will be back here with the latest on 9 Jan 11 – have a safe and happy holiday season!


  • Where’s the Cliffs smelter going? (1)  Most likely Sudbury, according to Greenstone.  “Municipal leaders are trying to convince Cliffs Natural Resources to locate its chromite smelter to Greenstone admit the company seems to be sticking to its existing plan to build the facility near Sudbury where it can plug into established power sources.  “They seem committed to their (Sudbury) base case and don’t seem to be dissuaded by anything else yet,” Municipality of Greenstone chief administrator Roy Sinclair said ….”  Source (PDF)
  • Where’s the Cliffs smelter going? (1)  Timmins, maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaybe (with Thunder Bay and Sudbury running a close second).  “Timmins is still in the competition, but is clearly a long-shot.  City residents on Monday night got a chance to view the production plans for Cliffs Natural Resources.  Cliffs is the Cleveland-based company developing a chromite mine in an area of the James Bay lowlands, commonly known as the Ring of Fire.  Timmins has been vying to be the site for a ferrochrome production facility connected with the chromite mine.  However, Capreol has already been identified by Cliffs as the preferred site.  Timmins is one of the three communities as a potential alternative — Thunder Bay and Greenstone being the other two.  However, Dean Rogers, president of the Porcupine Prospectors and Developers Association, doesn’t think Timmins would move to the front of the line if, for whatever reason, Capreol was dropped from consideration.  “It’s partly a political decision I would guess,” said Rogers. “With two of the Liberal ministers sitting in both Thunder Bay and Sudbury area, it’s kind of hard to go against the fact one of those may be the chosen area for its location — if it’s located in this province at all.” ….”  Sourcemoremore
  • FedNor Minister:  it’s up to Ontario to do something about electricity rates (and we have teams working on the Ring of Fire issues, too).  “The federal government has a role to play to make sure the Ring of Fire is developed and that it creates jobs in the North, says FedNor Minister Tony Clement.  But, if those jobs are to remain in Ontario, Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty and his government will have to do something about electricity rates, said Clement.  Clement has struck a committee to stay up to date with developments in the massive chromite deposits, to make sure the economic potential of the area is maximized.  But Clement said Monday that while he favours processing jobs remaining in Northern Ontario, the high cost of electricity could be a problem.  “(That) is firmly in the hands of (Premier) Dalton McGuinty and the Liberal government, so they’ve got to step up,” said Clement …. A group of federal officials is remaining in close touch with the province about the development.  The federal government is involved in a number of “regulatory hurdles” and with respect to “dialogue with First Nations” about development of the deposits.  Clement said the federal committee was struck after he noticed “about a year ago that we should be more co-ordinated in this area.” ….”  Source
  • Aroland Chief Sonny Gagnon:  When’s Cliffs dropping by OUR community?  “…. (Chief Gagnon) said Cliffs needs to come to his community to give residents a greater understanding of both the potential downside of the project, as well as the benefits under proposals to transfer ore from company trucks to trains on First Nations’ traditional territory.  “Along with the good, there’s the bad side of things that development does, so we need to understand it. We really need to get our elders and youth to understand here’s what’s going to be happening,” he said Monday.  Gagnon said an enhanced environmental assessment would bring public hearings to his community, but so far the government is sticking with a paper-based assessment of Cliffs plans.”  Source
  • More Ring of Fire-Attawapiskat linkage.  “The Grand Chief of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation says the crisis in Attawapiskat is a wake-up call for other First Nations.  Stan Beardy said the fact that people there are living in such dire conditions with a diamond mine next door is causing chiefs to rethink the potential benefits of new mines in northern Ontario.  “That is what’s missing and the end result is, what we’re trying to deal with today, people [are] living in tent frames and shacks,” Beardy said. “That’s not fair and that’s what we’re trying to address.”  Beardy said it’s also unfair that a critical housing shortage in Attawapiskat resulted in a government crackdown on the community’s finances, instead of immediate aid.”  Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-16 Dec 11 (PDF) here.  All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act.  We’re 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 – 12 Dec 11

  • Comparisons are being drawn between the situation in Attawapiskat and the Ring of Fire (1)  “…. In spite of our objections, the mine was approved and is now in operation. Life has clearly not improved for the citizens of Attawapiskat. We’ve continued our connection with the community by providing it with scientific information about the potential effects of the mine on mercury levels in lakes and rivers, boreal woodland caribou populations and the formation of sinkholes. But that does not fix the tremendous social and economic problems the community is facing.  Meanwhile, many more industrial developments are looming for Ontario’s north. Next up are mega-mines being proposed to extract valuable minerals in the Ring of Fire upstream from Attawapiskat ….”  Source
  • Comparisons are being drawn between the situation in Attawapiskat and the Ring of Fire (2)  “@politixgirl (Gina Cosentino)  Same question 4 FNs w/ chromite MT @NoLore @Knowledgewalker: any chance diamond folks want #Attawapiskat gone 4 better access to diamonds?”  Source
  • With Ring of Fire development needing provincial and federal money, some northern mayors want FedNor funding easier to access, especially if provincial Northern Ontario Heritage Fund money is not forthcoming.  “If a tight budget won’t allow the feds to add more money to FedNor, then Northern mayors want Ottawa to adjust how it doles out the cash.  The economic development program for Northern Ontario offers one-time, one-year funding, but that may not suit larger multi-year ventures, especially infrastructure projects, said North Bay Mayor Al McDonald during an interview on the weekend.  “If we can get that small adjustment made, that would help municipalities control their destiny,” he said.  McDonald and the city’s CEO Dave Linkie were among the Northern representatives including Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Jay Aspin to accept an invitation to meet with FedNor Minister Tony Clement on Thursday to hash out priorities for Northern Ontario.  FedNor’s budget is about $34 million for the year, compared to the $100-million Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, yet the two programs are linked in a way that makes it easier to access federal money if the provincial dollars are already committed.  Northern mayors want to uncouple the programs to make it easier to access FedNor money when Heritage funding isn’t in place ….”  Source
  • A column by an industry writer in the National Post points a finger at Ontario re:  consulting with First Nations under the Far North Act (PDF).  “…. It’s rather ironic that the supposedly “conservative mining industry” is consulting and making various agreements that ensure aboriginal communities get maximum benefits from mineral development of their traditional territories and that adhere to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples commitment to “prior and informed consent.”  Conversely, the Liberal-left McGuinty government and its environmental allies force unwanted parks on First Nations communities with a condescending colonial mindset from the past century ….”  Source
  • Some northwestern Ontario First Nations are working to improve electrical connectivity near the Ring of Fire (although not specifically for any ROF projects at this point).   “Numerous First Nation Communities are working to bring transmission line connectivity and green energy development to remote First Nation communities currently operating on expensive diesel generators in Northwestern Ontario.  Wataynikaneyap Power is being formed as a First Nation led company to design, permit, construct, own and operate a 230 kV transmission line to bring additional grid connection to Pickle Lake. The Company is proposing a two-phase planning and permitting process to bring connectivity to the remote First Nations. The first phase would reinforce the grid at Pickle Lake and the second phase would extend the grid north of Pickle Lake to service the remote communities.  Significant pre-development work has been completed, including a routing study for the new line to Pickle Lake (Phase 1). The Team engaged a transmission Consultant to evaluate five potential route options to connect to Pickle Lake. A preferred route has been identified and further studies will take place over the coming months. Community consultations and the commencement of an Environmental Assessment is planned in early 2012.  The need for this transmission line is supported by the Ministry of Energy as identified in the Long Term Energy Plan, released November 23, 2010 and the Ministry Directive to plan for remote First Nation community connectivity, February 3, 2011.  Early engagement and participation of all First Nation Communities will be key to successful development. Each community will have the choice to be an equal owner in Wataynikaneyap Power. Reliable power in the region is a direct benefit for all, while allowing those communities with renewable energy projects to sell their clean power to the provincial grid, further supporting regional economic development. The opportunity to turn off the diesel generators used in the region will result in a meaningful reduction of greenhouse gas generation while allowing First Nations significantly more power capacity to enable community development projects ….”  Source (alternate link to news release here)

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1-11 Dec 11 (PDF) here.  All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act.  We’re 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 – 5 Dec 11

  • Noront Resources:  we have a preferred route for year-round access to our proposed Eagle’s Nest mining site.  “…. Paul Semple, chief operating officer with Noront, said …. they have looked at 12 different scenarios that included using roads, trains and hovercrafts, but have since narrowed down the choices. While an environmental review still needs to be completed, he said having a route that will allow them year round access will be incredibly beneficial.  “When we looked at our studies we found a preferred East to West route which comes in from Pickle Lake and comes onto an all season road up to Webequie,” Semple said.  “We follow an existing winter road corridor so we minimize our environmental disturbance.  It’s pretty important to have these roads otherwise you would have a fleet of trucks running two months out of the year and then they would sit idle for the next 10.” ….”  Source
  • Meanwhile, Noront re-announces it has its environmental assessment documents for the Eagle’s Nest project available for public scrutiny.  “Noront Resources Ltd. has released the Notice of Commencement of Terms of Reference.  Noront is continuing with its work for the Environmental Assessment for the Eagle’s Nest Mine Project in northwest Ontario.  Since 2009, Environmental Baseline studies have been conducted around the mineral deposit, at infrastructure sites, and along the access corridor. Noront has also been advancing the engineering of the mine and infrastructure since 2009, incorporating means to protect the environment and support sustainable development.  Draft Terms of Reference (TOR) for the Eagle’s Nest Mine project have been prepared by Noront in compliance with Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) requirements.  The draft TOR is available for review by the public, and copies can be down loaded at www.norontresources.com or www.eaglesnestmine.com  ….”   Source  (Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency documents also available here, here and here)
  • Noront selling shared to raise ~$4M for Ring of Fire work.  “Noront Resources Ltd. is pleased to announce that it has entered into an agreement with Dundee Securities Ltd., on behalf of a syndicate including Raymond James Ltd. under which the Agents have agreed to offer for sale, on a best efforts private placement basis, flow-through common shares (the “Flow-Through Shares”) at a price of $0.86 per Flow-Through Share for gross proceeds of approximately $3,000,000.  In addition, Noront has granted the Agents an over-allotment option (the “Option”) to sell up to an additional $1,000,000 of the Flow-Through Shares sold pursuant to the Offering, at $0.86 per Flow-Through Share, exercisable at any time prior to 48 hours before the Closing Date of the Offering …. The gross proceeds from the sale of the Flow-Through Shares will be used for Canadian Exploration Expenses (“CEE”), with the Company to use best efforts to qualify such CEE as “flow-through mining expenditures”, to fund ongoing exploration activities on the Company’s McFauld’s Lake project ….”  Source
  • Merry Christmas from Noront to First Nation kids!  “A Toronto-based mining company wants to ensure that 350 children in two remote First Nations near the Ring of Fire mining district have presents for Christmas.  Noront Resources Ltd. in co-operation with the North-South Partnership for Children, is running its third annual Ring of Fire Christmas Fund.  In the past two years the company has raised over $40,000 and has ensured that every child under age 12, both on- and off-reserve in Marten Falls and Webequie has received a wrapped gift ….”  Sourcemore (company news release) – more (company brochure)
  • What Premier Dalton McGuinty had to say about the prospect of Cliffs Natural Resources shipping some less-than-fully-processed chromite straight to China, instead of having it all refined in Ontario:  “…. we’re going to do everything we can together to maximize the benefits for the people of Ontario.  I know where my friend (Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath, who asked the question in the Legislature) wants to go on this, and I can’t agree with her in that regard. She would suggest that we put up a wall around our resources sector here in Ontario. The fact of the matter is, we receive raw minerals from other parts of the world. We bring them into our province, we process them here, and we create good jobs here. So that’s not the kind of fight I want to get into with the international community.  Having said that, I again say to my honourable colleague, let us see if we can find a way, all of us together, working with northerners in particular, to ensure that we maximize the benefits of the development of the Ring of Fire for the benefit of all Ontarians ….”  Source (PDF of question & answer exchange from 30 Nov 11 Hansard) – moremore
  • Message from First Nation governance conference in Thunder Bay:  Unity is the key.  “…. “We can’t approach these things fractured,” said Elijah Harper, a former member of both provincial and federal parliament in northern Manitoba.  Harper was one of several speakers at the two-day First Nations Strategy for the Ring of Fire forum hosted by the National Centre for First Nations Governance at the Victoria Inn Tuesday.  “There’s a confusion of how to work together; that’s the problem – where to begin,” said Harper. “People are at different stages of speaking with the mining companies. “  Not only does there need to be collaboration on how to move forward with mining development, but also on how to deal with Aboriginal and treaty rights.  Harper said people need to be properly advised so they can make informed decisions in respect to development; so they know what impacts it may have on their traditional territory.  “They have to be addressed with the mining companies and also to stress that the federal and provincial government have a responsibility to ensure consultation happens,” he said.  Harper believes it is possible for the communities to work together as they have a common vision – they want to benefit from the Ring of Fire activity.  “That’s the ultimate goal – to achieve a good future for the First Nations and for generations to come,” he said.  The aim of the conference was to show First Nations what it takes to organize a legal and political strategy to get the most out of negotiations with government and industry.  The forum was also to educate Aboriginal people about their rights and the legal obligations of the federal and provincial governments, specifically regarding resource use and the Ring of Fire ….”  Source
  • Op-ed attributed to Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief Stan Beardy on why he’s against the Far North Act:  First Nations don’t have the final say.  “…. The core elements of every land use plan are subject to a provincial veto which is in complete denial of a standard that is being recognized internationally, that is, the right for First Nations to provide free, prior and informed consent. Canada and Ontario still have yet to catch up to this standard ….”  Source
  • The Wasaya Group is teaming up with other businesses to help service the Ring of Fire.  “…. This fall, the Thunder Bay-based Native venture corporation announced joint ventures with a major Northern contractor and a Sioux Lookout trucking company.  Wasaya has struck business partnerships with Dowland Contracting of Inuvik, N.W.T. and Morgan Transfer of Sioux Lookout.  Dowland business development director Martin Landry said the company has delivered more than $1 billion in mine and power line developments as well as hospital and school projects in Canada and Alaska since its inception 30 years ago.  The new venture, Wasaya Dowland Contracting, will provide construction expertise to Wasaya with future training and apprenticeship programs stemming from the relationship.  “Wasaya Dowland Contracting will undertake large construction initiatives through the industrial, commercial and institutional sectors,” said Landry. “The company will be available to serve the Ring of Fire should they require our industrial capacity” ….” Source

More open source information (excerpts from information monitored 1 Nov-5 Dec 11 (PDF) here.  All information shared here in accordance with the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act.  We’re not responsible for the accuracy of the source material, and inclusion of material doesn’t mean endorsement.

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Ring of Fire First Nation: We’ll Decide, Thanks

This from TBNewswatch.com:

A First Nation community near the Ring of Fire wants the public to know that it is autonomous.  Webequie First Nation, part of Matawa First Nations Management Tribal Council, released a community position paper and a consultation and accommodation protocol Wednesday morning. Chief Cornelius Wabbase said in light of recent media attention with Matawa’s withdrawal of support for Ring of Fire development, his community needs to reaffirm that it makes its own decisions when it comes to Webequie First Nation.  “The community has to assert themselves so that they can be recognized as a community up there that has the decision making power,” Wabasse said.  “We have to be known that we’re there…we have our own community processes that have to be taken into account.”  People in Webequie are concerned with a lack of consultation from government, industry and third party organizations like Matawa.  Wabasse said first and foremost, any consultation done with regard to Webequie traditional territory must be done with Webequie.  “The community has a concern about their (Matawa’s) approach and I’m standing by my community,” Wabasse said. “They’re not being properly consulted at the community level.”  Wabasse said Webequie does share environmental concerns with Matawa, which filed an application for a judicial review over the federal government’s decision to put a faster comprehensive environmental assessment for a proposed chromite project rather than a joint-panel assessment.   Wabasse said Webequie is still working with Matawa and other regional partners ….

More in a news release from Webequie First Nation here (or here in PDF if other link doesn’t work).

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