Cambrian College receives $2.1M research grant: A collaboration with mine business partners for the next five years – by Karen McKinley (Northern Ontario Business – June 26, 2017)

https://www.northernontariobusiness.com/

The future is looking more secure for several innovation projects at Cambrian College in Sudbury with a large grant coming their way.

Cambrian Innovates, the applied research division at the college, and three mining industry partners will benefit from a $2.1-million grant aimed at supporting a five-year Mine Environmental Stewardship Initiative.

The grant is coming from the federal government’s National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) College and Community Innovation (CCI) program. The funds were secured through an Innovation Enhancement grant that will support a five-year Mine Environmental Stewardship Initiative. Continue Reading →

Why coal mining is resurgent in the U.S., China and India (CBS News – June 26, 2017)

http://www.cbsnews.com/

Associated Press: BEIJING — The U.S., China and India are going back to the coal mines. These three countries, the world’s biggest coal users, have boosted coal mining in 2017, in an abrupt departure from last year’s record global decline for the heavily polluting fuel and a setback to efforts to rein in climate change emissions.

Mining data reviewed by The Associated Press show that production through May is up by at least 121 million tons, or 6 percent, for the three countries compared to the same period last year. The change is most dramatic in the U.S., where coal mining rose 19 percent in the first five months of the year, according to U.S. Department of Energy data.

Coal’s fortunes had appeared to hit a new low less than two weeks ago, when British energy company BP reported that tonnage mined worldwide fell 6.5 percent in 2016, the largest drop on record. China and the U.S. accounted for almost all the decline, while India showed a slight increase. Continue Reading →

Banks Balk at Risk of Funding South Africa Mining Charter Deals – by Renee Bonorchis (Bloomberg News – June 26, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

South Africa’s plan to force mining companies to give the black majority a bigger stake in the nation’s mineral wealth faces a major obstacle: convincing banks to back billions of dollars of fresh deals in an industry in decline.

Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane said on June 15 that local mines should be at least 30 percent owned by black people, up from the previous requirement of 26 percent. The mining companies need banks to help fund transactions that transfer the stakes to black investors who often don’t have the capital to invest due to their marginalization during white rule.

Companies often use dividends or divert cash flows to pay off the debt on behalf on the black empowerment partners, which means full ownership only vests years later. “The charter will have an effect on our ability to finance the mining industry in South Africa,” said Ursula Nobrega, a spokeswoman for Investec Plc, one of South Africa’s five biggest banks. “We already exercise caution as to who and what projects we finance.” Continue Reading →

Future of diamond mining in the sea – by Magreth Nunuhe (The Southern Times – June 26, 2017)

The Southern Times – Top News For Southern Africa

WALVIS BAY – Having the richest marine diamond deposits in the world, Namibia has set its sights on the ocean as the output of marine diamond production continue to enormously outstrip production of the precious stones on land.

Last year, marine diamond production yielded 1.17 million carats, while land operations generated 403,000 carats, contributing over billions of dollars in revenue. Namibian diamond mining takes place at around 120 to 140 metres below sea level.

In the next 15 years, it is estimated that diamond production on land in Namibia will run out and that 95 percent of diamond production will come from the sea. With approximations that the 3,700 miles squared concession area at sea on the south-west coast of Southern Africa will provide plenty of gemstones for the next 50 years, De Beers Group and Debmarine Namibia inaugurated the world’s most advanced exploration vessel, dubbed the mv SS Nujoma at the coastal town of Walvis Bay on 15 June 2017. Continue Reading →

The Future of Coal Country – by Eliza Griswold (The New Yorker Magazine – July 3, 2017)

http://www.newyorker.com/

A local environmental activist fights to prepare her community for life beyond mining.

One Sunday morning, just after deer-hunting season ended, Veronica Coptis, a community organizer in rural Greene County, Pennsylvania, climbed onto her father’s four-wheeler. She set off for a ridge a quarter of a mile from her parents’ small farmhouse, where she was brought up with her brother and two sisters. “Those are coyote tracks,” she called over the engine noise, pointing down at a set of fresh paw prints.

At the crest of the ridge, she stopped along a dirt track and scanned in both directions for security guards. Around her stretched a three-mile wasteland of valleys. Once an untouched landscape of white oak and shagbark hickory, it now belonged to Consol Energy and served as the refuse area for the Bailey Mine Complex, the largest underground coal mine in the United States.

Five hundred feet below the ridgeline lay a slate-colored expanse of sludge: sixty acres of coal waste, which filled the valley floor to a depth of more than a hundred feet. Coptis stared; it was twice as deep as it had been when she’d visited a year before. “How can it be that after two hundred years no one has come up with a better way of getting rid of coal waste?” she asked. Continue Reading →

As 777 winds down, Hudbay looks to Lalor – by D’Arcy Jenish (Canadian Mining Journal – June 2017)

http://www.canadianminingjournal.com/

For nearly a century – 90 years in December, to be precise – Hudbay Minerals has been the cornerstone and lifeblood of the northern Manitoba community of Flin Flon. But change is coming to this quintessential one-industry, resource-based Canadian town.

In 2020, Hudbay is scheduled to close the 777 mine – its only remaining mining operation in the immediate vicinity of Flin Flon. Meantime, the company is continuing to develop and expand its base and precious metal Lalor mine, which began producing in late 2014 and is located in Snow Lake, 215 km east of Flin Flon.

“We have undertaken a program of re-evaluating exploration opportunities with the Flin Flon area,” says Cashel Meagher, Hudbay’s senior vice-president and chief operating officer. “The obvious future in northern Manitoba will divert from Flin Flon to Lalor. We want to perpetuate the life of the Lalor mine.” Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Fight over Rio’s mines means coal isn’t dead; Adani woes show it’s dying – by Clyde Russell (Reuters U.S. – June 26, 2017)

https://www.reuters.com/

Here’s a question for the anti-coal lobby. If coal is dying, how come there is an increasingly heated bidding war going on for Rio Tinto’s coal mines in Australia? Here’s another question, this time for the pro-coal lobby. If coal still has a viable long-term future as an energy source, how come the world’s biggest planned new mine is now hostage to whether the Australian government decides to loan it money?

Reconciling these two questions may seem like a challenge but both the battle for Rio Tinto’s existing mines and the struggles of India’s Adani to build its Carmichael project neatly show where coal currently finds itself.

Rio’s mines in the Hunter Valley north of Sydney are attractive to both Glencore and China’s Yancoal because they are likely to be profitable for the remaining life of the pits, which is expected to be around 20 years. Continue Reading →

Canada’s Boutique-Broker Bust May Be Over But Lessons Remain – by Kristine Owram (Bloomberg News – June 26, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

The crisis that wiped out a quarter of Canada’s independent brokers seems to have halted. Four new firms signed up with the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada in the first five months of 2017 and only two deregistered. That compares with net dropouts over the last four years as plunging commodity prices and higher compliance costs favored big banks.

Boutique dealers were also battered by Canadian investors’ post-crisis aversion to risk capital, which prompted them to avoid the kind of companies that typically work with smaller brokerages. Such firms funnel research and capital into small and mid-cap companies, which account for more than a quarter of volume traded in Canada’s equity markets.

“Life for independents has gotten better over the last six months,” Dan Daviau, chief executive officer of Toronto-based independent broker Canaccord Genuity Group Inc., said by phone. “Investors are all of a sudden saying, ‘Hey, I don’t mind taking a little more risk, I don’t mind investing in an early-stage tech company or a mining company that’s just discovering stuff.’” Continue Reading →

Bidding war intensifies for Rio Tinto’s Hunter Valley coal mines – by David Chau (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – June 26, 2017)

http://www.abc.net.au/

Rio Tinto is currently in a dilemma on who it should sell its Hunter Valley mines to – the Swiss or the Chinese. Late on Friday, Swiss-based company Glencore upped its bid to more than $3.5 billion (US$2.685 billion) for the purchase of Rio’s subsidiary, Coal & Allied Industries Limited.

The assets on the block are Rio’s Hunter Valley operations – the Warkworth/Mount Thorley thermal and semi-soft coking coal mines and a major stake in the Port Waratah coal loading facility in Newcastle.

Glencore said its latest offer is around $297 million ($US225 million) greater than Yancoal’s proposal. “We believe the Glencore offer satisfies the criteria for a ‘superior proposal’: it delivers substantially greater value to Rio Tinto shareholders and low deal completion risk,” Glencore said in a statement. Continue Reading →

Greenpeace is a menace to the world – by Margaret Wente (Globe and Mail – June 24, 2017)

 

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/

The little town of Saint-Félicien, in Quebec’s lovely Saguenay region, is under siege. The softwood lumber wars have broken out again, and that’s bad news. … Then there’s Greenpeace. “Greenpeace wants our total death!” mayor Gilles Potvin complained back in 2013. “If we listen to them, we can’t cut wood any more.”

Greenpeace has been waging a relentless campaign against Resolute Forest Products, the largest forest company in the region and in Canada. (It is the successor company to Abitibi and Bowater.)

Greenpeace has branded Resolute as a “forest destroyer” that is risking a “caribou herd death spiral” and harming the region’s First Nations. It has vigorously lobbied Resolute’s customers – including the world’s biggest book publishers – to boycott its paper and print products. Continue Reading →

Arsenic to be removed from Sudbury’s Long Lake – by Jim Moodie (Sudbury Star – June 24, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Residents of Long Lake will notice some extra activity around their shores in coming months — and next year, especially — but chances are they’ll welcome the temporary annoyance of noisy equipment over the lingering presence of a deadly poison.

A tender is going out this summer for reclamation work on the former Long Lake Gold site, which has been leaching arsenic into the southwest corner of the lake for years, with a contract to be awarded in the fall and the work apt to commence in earnest early in the new year.

Stephen Butcher, chair of Long Lake Stewardship, said it’s been a long wait for a remediation project to get the go-ahead but “we’re ecstatic it’s finally getting done.” It was Butcher’s stewardship group that first detected elevated levels of arsenic, which has been filtering down from old tailings deposits, through water testing done back in 2011. Continue Reading →

Grand Canyon is our home. Uranium mining has no place here – by Carletta Tilousi (The Guardian – June 26, 2017)

https://www.theguardian.com/

Carletta Tilousi is a member of the Havasupai tribal council.

The Havasupai – “people of the blue-green waters” – live in Supai Village, located at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. Today our lives and water are being threatened by international uranium mining companies because the US government and its 1872 mining law permit uranium mining on federal lands that surround the Grand Canyon.

In 1986, the Kaibab national forest authorized a Canadian-based uranium company to open Canyon mine, a uranium mine near the south rim of Grand Canyon national park. The Havasupai tribe challenged the decision but lost in the ninth circuit court of appeals. Miners were just starting to drill Canyon mine’s shaft in 1991 when falling uranium prices caused the company to shut it down for more than two decades.

Havasupai ancestors share stories of the sacredness of the Grand Canyon and all the mountains that surround it. They have instructed us to protect the waters and the mountains from any environmental contamination. That’s why we stand firm against any uranium mining in the Grand Canyon region. Continue Reading →

Laurentian students making a name in mining – by Harley Davidson (Sudbury Star – June 24, 2017)

 

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Two St. Catharines natives are part of winning teams in this year’s MINED Open Innovation Challenge, offered by the Ontario Mining Association to mining and engineering students.

Adam Grinbergs and Sarah Bulanda, Laurentian University students, are members of the first and second place teams, respectively. The program tasked engineering students to come up with solutions to hypothetical mining problems.

Their case study presented them with the challenge of cooling down underground mines. Grinbergs’ team came up with a concept called Deep Water Cooling, in which cool water from the bottom of the Great Lakes is pumped into the mine and misted into the air. Grinbergs says the process of cooling deep mines is essential, with temperatures in mines rising an average of 1 degree Celsius per 100 metres depth. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Ontario Supporting Mining Innovation in Kenora (Ministry of Northern Development and Mines – June 26, 2017)

Province Boosting Economic Growth and Creating New Jobs in the North

Ontario is diversifying the Northern economy and helping create good new jobs for people in the North by supporting innovation at a mining company near Kenora.

The province is supporting Avalon Advanced Materials as it develops an innovative new process to make lithium-ion batteries from petalite mineral deposits in the Kenora area. This support, through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC), will allow the local mining company to test and demonstrate converting lithium mineral petalite into lithium hydroxide, a key component in the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries, which provide a rechargeable, sustainable and low-pollution source of energy storage.

This new production process will enable Avalon Advanced Materials to further diversify the economy of the region, continue to grow its business and create and maintain 14 new local jobs.  Supporting mining innovation and good jobs in the North is part of our plan to create jobs, grow our economy, and help people in their everyday lives. Continue Reading →

Hawthorne’s Cobalt letters – by Douglas Baldwin (CIM Magazine – February 2017)

http://magazine.cim.org/en/

Scheming brokers, including a famous author’s son, deceived many speculators during the Cobalt, Ontario silver rush

Two years after the 1903 discovery of rich silver deposits in northern Ontario, a Toronto brokerage firm asserted that “when you take into consideration that Cobalt’s mines have produced more in value than the Klondike is producing per annum, or has ever produced, you will have some idea of the great results that will come out of this camp when fully developed.”

Mining companies licensed to work in Ontario grew from 43 in 1903 to 683 four years later. For three consecutive days, mounted police in New York City cleared Broad Street of would-be investors who were obstructing traffic in their efforts to buy Cobalt shares from the curb brokers.

Stories of millions of dollars changing hands overnight were legion. The Canadian Annual Review recounted the tale of a North Bay resident who made $15,000 by merely picking up silver nuggets lying on the ground. Continue Reading →