The story of nickel is industrial romance writ by man in metal – by Charles Vincent (MACLEAN’S MAGAZINE – December 15, 1936)

http://www.macleans.ca/

THE CONSTRUCTION gang foreman looked down the cut where his crew was tackling the tough rock with heavy picks, getting ready to blast. The track layers were right on his heels, pushing the new Canadian Pacific Railway westward to bridge the continent. The foreman’s eye fell on one man.

“Hey, you !” he roared, “what’re ye standin’ there gapin’ at? Get busy with that pick.”

“Well, take a look at this slab of rock, boss; it’s kind of queer.” And so in 1883 nickel was uncovered at Sudbury.

It was a product that nobody wanted. When the first smelting yielded a metal which was curiously pale instead of copper red, and when analysis showed that this fault was due to the presence of nickel, men cursed it as a plague which they neither knew how to get rid of nor how to use in such large quantities. It was the copper content of the Sudbury ore on which they had set their hopes. Continue Reading →

[Mining education and research innovation] LU head proud university in ‘new league’ – by Staff (Sudbury Star – January 16, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Laurentian University president Dominic Giroux can look back on several accomplishments in 2016, including tens of millions in new government funding and donations for the university, as well as record enrolment, and his personal appointment as vice-chair of Universities Canada from October 2016 to October 2017, and as chair from October 2017 to 2019, among other honours.

Originally appointed as president in 2009, Giroux has seen many of his plans for Laurentian come to fruition, with many parts of an ambitious 2012-2-17 Strategic Plan already implemented.

He has faced his share of challenges, too, such as the tough decision to suspend programs at Laurentian’s Barrie campus earlier this year. Giroux took some time over the holidays to reflect on his near-eight-year tenure as president and the year that was in 2016, and to talk about his future vision for Laurentian University. Continue Reading →

BHP Billiton set to reap benefits of favoured status with Donald Trump – by Robert Gottliebsen (The Australian – January 13, 2017)

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/

Suddenly almost everything is going right for the world’s largest mining company, Australia’s BHP. Not only is cash pouring into its coffers because of higher iron ore, oil and coal prices but, thanks to CEO Andrew Mackenzie and his team, much lower costs mean profits will skyrocket at a rate well above the estimates of most analysts.

In the past BHP would have been expected to shower shareholders with dividends but now the company is among an elite group of non-US companies—-it has been chosen by president-elect Donald Trump to help “make America great again”.

I do not think Australia and even BHP fully comprehend the US potential being opened up for the Big Australian. Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Indonesia rocks the nickel market (again) – by Andy Home (Reuters U.S. – January 13, 2017)

http://www.reuters.com/

Jan 13 Almost exactly three years ago Indonesia rocked the global nickel market by banning the export of unprocessed minerals. At the stroke of a presidential pen the flow of nickel ore feeding China’s massive stainless steel sector was cut off.

Now Indonesia has done it again, this time by part reversing that ban. The London Metal Exchange nickel price initially slumped 5 percent on the news to a four-month low of $9,660 per tonne before recovering to $10,275 at the Thursday close.

The tremors have spread to the equities market with the shares of Australia’s nickel producers and Indonesia’s own PT Vale Indonesia experiencing similar turbulence. Continue Reading →

China imported record 1.02b tonnes of iron ore in 2016 – by Ranjeetha Pakiam(Australian Financial Review – January 14, 2017)

http://www.afr.com/

Bloomberg – Iron ore imports by China surged to a record above 1 billion tonnes last year as unexpectedly strong steel production and lower local mine output combined to fire up demand in the world’s top buyer for cargoes from Australia and Brazil, supporting a rebound in prices.

Asia’s top economy imported 1.024 billion tonnes in 2016, up 7.5 per cent from a year earlier, according to customs data issued on Friday: that’s about 32 tonnes a second, according to Bloomberg calculations. Purchases last month totalled about 89 million tonnes, compared with 96.3 million tonnes a year earlier.

Iron ore surged more than 80 per cent last year as China added stimulus to sustain economic growth, bolstering steel production, soaking up rising low-cost mine supply and shredding bears’ forecasts. Continue Reading →

South Africa: 1 700 Workers Start Strike 2.4km Below Harmony Mine (All Africa – January 12, 2017)

http://allafrica.com/

About 1 700 miners refused to return to the surface of Harmony Gold’s [JSE:HAR] Kusasalethu mine in the West Rand on Wednesday, with the miner saying they have embarked on an illegal sit-in.

“Harmony Gold confirms that around 1 700 employees are participating in an illegal sit-in at the company’s Kusasalethu mine near Carletonville,” the company said in a statement.

“The sit-in started on Wednesday, January 11 when employees chose not to return to surface at the end of the morning shift. “No formal demands have been made by the participating employees. Continue Reading →

A tale of two western coal mining towns – by Bill Graveland (Waterloo Record – January 12, 2017)

http://www.therecord.com/

The Canadian Press – HANNA, Alta. — The hand-painted sign on a bumpy road on the east side of Hanna speaks volumes. “Hanna supports coal, cows, gas and oil,” it says bluntly. The sign includes a circle with a line through it over the words “carbon tax.”

The town of 2,700, 230 kilometres northeast of Calgary, like many rural Alberta communities, has largely lived off agriculture. But a large vein of thermal coal east of town led to the construction of the coal-fired Sheerness generating plant in the early 1980s and has provided welcome jobs and business in the region ever since.

People worry that economic boost is threatened by a new carbon levy and the provincial government’s plan to shut down coal-fired power plant by 2030 and move exclusively to natural gas, wind, solar and hydro energy instead. Continue Reading →

Federal funding for new Tlicho all-season road a boost for Fortune’s Nico project – by Henry Lazenby (MiningWeekly.com – January 13, 2017)

http://www.miningweekly.com/

VANCOUVER (miningweekly.com) – Federal funding for up to 25% of the construction costs for a new 97 km all-season road connecting Highway 3 to the community of Whati, in the Northwest Territories, augers well for project developer Fortune Minerals’ endeavours to secure financing for its nearby Nico cobalt/gold/bismuth/copper project.

“With cobalt and gold prices firming, and greater certainty of an all-season road, Fortune is well-positioned to secure the financing needed to begin construction of the Nico mine,” Fortune VP of finance and CFO David Massola commented Thursday.

The Tlicho all-season road (TASR) will be funded in part through the federal administered P3 Canada Fund. Procurement of the TASR – through a government of the Northwest Territories public–private partnership – will start with the release of the ‘request for qualifications’ in February, and will be followed by a ‘request for proposal’ and bids from private industry to provide combined finance and construction. Continue Reading →

Coal Recovery Too Good to Resist for World’s Biggest Shipper – by Fitri Wulandari and Eko Listiyorini (Bloomberg News – January 13, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Indonesia will exceed its coal production target for another year as miners cash in after prices recovered from a five-year collapse.

The world’s biggest exporter will produce about 489 million metric tons this year, 18 percent above the government-mandated target, according to energy ministry forecasts. That’s up from last year’s output estimated at 434 million tons and would be at least the third year in a row that the nation has produced more than it planned.

Southeast Asia’s largest economy has been trying to cap its coal output in an attempt to preserve resources for future generations of Indonesians. That’s proving a challenge as resurgent prices tempt producers to maximize output from new and existing mines to meet demand at home and abroad. Continue Reading →

Risky business pays off for Canadian mine developers – by Ella Myers (Northern Ontario Business – January 13, 2017)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

Goodman School of Mines fireside chat yields inspirational career stories

In 1991, Catherine McLeod-Seltzer and Eira Thomas embarked on journeys that would separately launch their careers in mine development and discovery. In 2015, the women celebrated together as their company, Lucara Diamonds, unearthed a softball-sized diamond in Botswana.

The third largest diamond ever discovered signified the risky but rewarding nature of their industry. McLeod-Seltzer, the chair of Bear Creek Mining, and Thomas, founder of Lucara, joined Jonathan Goodman, Laurentian University’s executive in residence, for an informal, fireside chat in Sudbury, Jan. 10.

Speaking from a couch nestled beside a tiny gas fireplace, McLeod-Seltzer shared how she accepted a job running an office for a gold company in Chile in 1991. She said the global economic climate was open and optimistic and that there was a “shiny path” in South America. Continue Reading →

Goldcorp to Focus on Partnering With Peers to Develop New Mines – by Scott Deveau and Danielle Bochove (Bloomberg News – January 13, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Goldcorp Inc.’s future growth strategy will likely focus on partnering with other senior miners as Canada’s second-largest producer of the metal looks to share the burden of developing multibillion-dollar projects, the chief executive officer said.

The Vancouver-based company has been looking for deposits in the portfolios of other miners or privately held properties that it can develop as joint ventures, David Garofalo said Thursday in comments following an interview on Bloomberg TV Canada. The focus, he said, has been primarily large-scale projects in the Americas.

“These are things that would move the needle even on a 50-50 basis,” Garofalo said, adding projects need to be big to replace the senior miners’ dwindling reserves. “We have to reverse that because by definition we’re dying otherwise as an industry.” Continue Reading →

Nickel smelters consider suing Indonesia after ore export ban U-turn – by Wilda Asmarini and Fergus Jensen (Reuters U.S. – January 13, 2017)

http://www.reuters.com/

JAKARTA – A major Chinese investor in Indonesia’s smelter industry said on Friday it was considering legal action and would put on hold its expansion plans in the country, after the government abruptly reversed a ban on the export of nickel ore and bauxite.

Indonesia’s government faced a sharp industry backlash after it unveiled sweeping new rules on Thursday allowing the export of nickel ore and bauxite under certain conditions. The policy change was a blow to Indonesia’s smelting industry which took off after the country banned mineral ore exports in 2014 to spur higher-value processing.

Virtue Dragon Nickel Industry, a unit of China’s De Long Nickel Co Ltd, and other smelter operators are jointly reviewing legal steps against the Indonesian government, Virtue Dragon’s general manager Rudi Rusmadi told Reuters by telephone. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Integra Gold and Goldcorp Team with IBM, Microsoft, Accenture and Cisco for #DisruptMining

Disrupt Mining 2017 from Integra Gold Corp on Vimeo.

Integra Gold Corp. (TSX-V: ICG, OTCQX: ICGQF) (“Integra” or the “Company”) and Goldcorp Inc. (TSX: G,NYSE: GG) are pleased to announce they have teamed with four of the world’s largest technology companies to explore potential applications of disruptive technologies in the mining sector.

#DisruptMining is a marquee event during the annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (“PDAC”) conference that will showcase disruptive and exponential technologies with the potential to revolutionize the future of mining, from exploration and discovery to production and automation to financing, marketing and corporate social responsibility. Goldcorp has committed $1 million for a proof of concept at one of Goldcorp’s mines or investment in the winning technologies. Continue Reading →

Ontario Labour minister touts mining changes – by Ben Leeson (Sudbury Star – January 13, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Ontario launched a mining health and safety review in the wake of tragedy, but provincial labour minister Kevin Flynn had a good-news story to tell during his stop in Sudbury on Thursday. Flynn visited the Nickel City to mark the implementation of new requirements to improve health and safety of workers in mines, which became effective on Jan. 1.

“Today was really an announcement of what we have been able to accomplish so far and we’re seeing the fruits of what was done in the mining review a few years back, when everybody had a sense of optimism, like ‘It looks like we’ve done a good job here; let’s start implementing the recommendations,’ ” Flynn, the MPP for Oakville, said on Thursday afternoon, shortly before speaking at a Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce lunch.

New requirements the minister highlighted on Thursday include: Continue Reading →

New CEO at IOC in Labrador City as company shuffles management – by Jacob Barker (CBC News Newfoundland and Labrador – January 09, 2017)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/

‘Organizational changes are an ongoing part of the business,’ a company spokesperson said

There’s been a shuffle in management at the Iron Ore Company of Canada in Labrador City. That’s according to internal documents CBC has obtained laying out “organizational changes.”

The announcement is attributed to new IOC president and CEO Clayton Walker who said he was with the company for 60 days when it was sent out on January 6th. The company’s chief operating officer, Thierry Martel, also signed off on the document.

“We are going to learn from the past and build upon our success,” the document reads. “The first step will be changing the organizational structural to allow us to better engage with our employees and manage our assets.” Continue Reading →