Archive | Aboriginal and Inuit Mining

Mining can be green and “sustainable” – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – August 15, 2017)

Miners, First Nations feed fodder to government policy wonks

Government needs to help encourage greater Indigenous participation in the mining sector if it wants to make progress on national reconciliation and to “unlock billions of economic activity” across the country. The Canadian Mineral Industry Federation (CMIF) submitted an Aug; 14 policy paper at the Energy and Mines Ministers conference in Saint Andrews, N.B.

CMIF is a coalition of mining interests, led by the Mining Association of Canada and the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, who believe Canada can be a top supplier of sustainably-sourced minerals and metals operating within a low-carbon regime.

Since the mining industry is the largest private sector employer of Indigenous people, CMIF said government needs to invest in Indigenous health, education, skills training, and make progress on resource revenue sharing. CMIF suggests government use industry “as a platform” toward national reconciliation. Continue Reading →

[Northern Superior Resources] Sudbury junior miner breathes life into Far North, Quebec projects – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – August 15, 2017)

Measuring 20 kilometres by 30 kilometres, Morris believes TPK has district-scale
mining possibilities, comparable to the Hollinger Mine complex in Timmins or
the Red Lake district. “I’ve been in this business for 35 years. I’ve never
seen anything like this.”

Tom Morris is excited to be finally returning to his roots. The president-CEO of Northern Superior Resources has two projects on the go this summer as his Sudbury exploration outfit advances a promising Quebec gold project while simultaneously blowing the dust off a mothballed gold and base metals property in Ontario’s Far North.

“When it comes to doing what we’re supposed to be doing, which is exploration, we’ve been pretty dormant,” Morris admits. During the downturn, it was all about survivability for many junior miners who tightened their belts as exploration dollars dried up.

After weathering that period in reasonably good shape, and with market interest in commodities looking favourable, it’s now time to get back to work with exploration dollars in hand and new company leadership in place. “Timing was everything,” said Morris. “I kept the company going for this opportunity that we knew was coming at some point.” Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Foundational policies can lead to bright future for Canada’s mineral and mining industry

Industry highlights top priorities at Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference

SAINT ANDREWS, NB–(Marketwired – August 14, 2017) – As Canada’s Energy and Mines Ministers convene for their 74th annual conference, a national coalition of mining associations is recommending several government actions to help unlock billions of economic activity across the country, address climate change, bolster reconciliation efforts with Indigenous peoples, and secure Canada as the world’s top supplier of sustainably-sourced minerals and metals in an increasingly lower carbon global economy.

A brief submitted by the Canadian Mineral Industry Federation (CMIF) details six policy areas where provincial collaboration and action by governments can enhance Canada’s ability to attract new mineral investment and expand the mineral and mining industry’s vast socio-economic contributions to Canadians:

1. Improve the regulatory process: Given the importance of the regulatory regime to the mining industry’s competitiveness and Canada’s ability to compete against other countries for new mineral investment, it is critical that current reviews of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, the Fisheries Act, and the Navigation Protection Act result in an effective, timely and coordinated regulatory process, from pre-environmental assessment (EA) to post-EA permitting, with meaningful consultation. Continue Reading →

These are the mining sector’s suggestions to the Canadian government – by Valentina Ruiz Leotaud ( – August 14, 2017)

The Mining Association of Canada together with the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada issued a press release Monday highlighting the topics the industry would like government officials to address during the Energy and Mines Ministers’ annual conference.

The conference, which is taking place in St. Andrew’s by-the-Sea, New Brunswick, between August 14th and 15th, is a formal meeting of federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for energy and mining portfolios.

Taking into account that this year’s overarching theme is “clean growth,” MAC and PDAC, in the name of a national coalition of mining associations gathered under the umbrella of the Canadian Mineral Industry Federation, detailed specific actions in six policy areas that, they believe, “should help unlock billions of economic activity across the country, address climate change, bolster reconciliation efforts with Indigenous peoples, and secure Canada as the world’s top supplier of sustainably-sourced minerals and metals.” Continue Reading →

Maliseet leaders to attend mining ministers conference in St. Andrews – by By Matthew Bingley (CBC News New Brunswick – August 14, 2017)

Leaders opposed to proposed Sisson Brook Mine

Indigenous people who are opposed to the Sisson mine project are teaming up with other advocacy groups to try to sway mining ministers at a national conference this week in St. Andrews.

The Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference will gather mining and energy ministers from every Canadian jurisdiction. The conference is held annually as a means to bolster the industry within the country.

The province is hosting the meeting not long after the controversial Sisson mine received federal environmental approval. Now, a delegation of conservationists, Indigenous leaders, and mining advocates plan on rubbing elbows with those ministers. Continue Reading →

How public opinion is shaping the new reality for mining – by David Herle (Canadian Mining Journal – August 2017)

DAVID HERLE is a principal partner and founder of the Gandalf Group, a leading polling and research firm based in Toronto.

The new reality for resource projects is the necessity of what is commonly called “social licence.” What this really means is that the final word on new resource extraction projects does not come from a quiet regulatory process, but rather through the loud and messy world of public opinion. The challenge is that most Canadians have a default position of neutrality to antipathy about resource development. Few people see much upside, and most are acutely aware of potential downsides.

These attitudes are driven by some fundamental trends. The first is urbanization. As Canadians have congregated in large cities, they have become very removed – physically, economically, and emotionally – from the resource industry. There is very little awareness of the role resources play in economic growth, job creation or tax revenues. As a consequence, most city residents think that resource development is done in the interests of somebody other than them.

The second trend is the growing priority attached to environmental protection. Most people attach a great deal of importance to environmental issues – not just climate change but even more importantly, the protection of fresh water and wilderness areas. Continue Reading →

[Alaska] Tribes hire coordinator to battle B.C. mines – by Kevin Gullufsen (Juneau Empire – August 7, 2017)

Banding together, 16 Southeast tribes will push for a seat at the table in talks with Canada about mining issues on shared waters. The United Tribal Transboundary Mining Work Group hired its first full-time employee, they announced in an Aug. 1 press release.

One of her first tasks will be to secure the tribes a stronger voice in inter-governmental talks about a series of large Canadian mining projects upriver from salmon habitat on the Stikine, Unuk and Taku River watersheds.

Based out of Wrangell, coordinator Tis Peterman will head up efforts to raise the tribes’ voice in ongoing discussions over the mines. Peterman is working on a Memorandum of Understanding, which would give the tribes a position alongside the state of Alaska and British Columbia in meetings about the controversial mining projects. Continue Reading →

B.C. First Nation to battle Taseko Mines in court – by Wendy Stueck (Globe and Mail – July 31, 2017)

VANCOUVER – The Tsilhqot’in National Government and Taseko Mines Ltd. are scheduled to face off in a Victoria court Monday, marking the latest stage in a long-running battle over a proposed open-pit mine the company wants to build near Fish Lake, also known as Teztan Biny.

The Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG) will ask the B.C. Supreme Court for an injunction to stop exploration work Taseko wants to do at the site, about 125 kilometres southwest of Williams Lake, B.C. The site lies just outside an area to which the TNG have aboriginal title – as confirmed in a landmark 2014 decision by the Supreme Court of Canada – and within a broader area subject to aboriginal claim.

The standoff between TNG and Taseko sets up a conflict between the provincial and federal governments and a potential headache for the B.C.’s NDP-Green alliance. A permit for exploration work, including drilling test pits and buildings roads, was issued July 14, while B.C.’s former Liberal government was still in office and several Tsilhqot’in communities were under evacuation orders because of raging wildfires. Continue Reading →

[Manitoba] Province wants to partner with First Nations in future mining developments – by Larry Kusch (Winnipeg Free Press – July 31, 2017)

The Progressive Conservative government is encouraging First Nation communities to reap the benefits of new Manitoba mining projects in their traditional territories.

The province announced Monday that it is working with Indigenous communities on a new protocol that will guide consultations between the province and First Nations on future mining development.

Premier Brian Pallister announced Monday that Norway House Cree Nation Chief Ron Evans and former Manitoba cabinet minister Jim Downey will develop the new mineral development protocol in partnership with First Nations. The goal is to establish “a clear pathway forward on mineral development with a stable and predictable consultation process,” he said. Continue Reading →

Nunavut economy to grow 6.4 per cent in 2017: study – by Beth Brown (Nunatsiaq News – August 2, 2017)

New mines expected to generate new wealth in the future

Nunavut’s economy will grow by 6.4 per cent in 2017—due to mining and construction. With four mines expected to reach operation by 2020, the Conference Board of Canada forecasts a steady expansion in Nunavut’s gross domestic product, or GDP, which has been rebounding since a drop in 2014.

“Metal mining is the single largest contributor to economic growth, and all operating mines are planning increases in production,” said an Aug. 1 report from the conference board on all three territorial economies. This year, mining output will grow by 23.7 per cent, following the opening of TMAC Resources Inc.’s Doris North mine in the Kitikmeot and increased production at Baffinland Iron Mines Corp.‘s’s Mary River mine and Agnico Eagle Ltd.’s Meadowbank.

That output will increase by 27 per cent by 2019 when Agnico Eagle brings its Meliadine and Amaruq projects into production, the biannual report said. Since dwindling reserves at Agnico Eagle’s Meadowbank site mean operations there will soon wind down, the territory should see a 0.2 per cent decline in total GDP in 2018, said the report. Continue Reading →

Construction at Nunavut’s Meliadine gold mine on schedule, on budget – by Beth Brown (Nunatsiaq News – August 1, 2017)

Gold project near Rankin Inlet on track to start production in 2019

Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. has reported that work at its Meliadine project, which received construction approval in February from Agnico Eagle’s board, is progressing as planned and is even slightly ahead of schedule.

The mining company operates the Meadowbank mine, which is currently nearing its end of lifespan, near Baker Lake in Nunavut’s Kivalliq region. To replace the exhausted mine, the company is building its long-awaited gold mine at Meliadine near Rankin Inlet and developing a satellite deposit near Meadowbank at a property called Amaruq.

Agnico Eagle included an update for its Meliadine and Amaruq deposits in a July 26 quarterly report, which cites a net income of $61.9 million, or 27 cents per share, for the second quarter of 2017, compared with income of $19 million, or nine cents per share over the same period in 2016. Continue Reading →

B.C. Energy and Mines Minister takes on tough portfolio – by Gordon Hoekstra (Vancouver Sun – August 1, 2017)

Michelle Mungall is a rural MLA from the Kootenays who has experience in social issues. She now takes on a ministry that encompasses economic, First Nation and environmental issues across a vast land base in B.C.

Mungall, a three-term MLA from Nelson-Creston and former Nelson city councillor, takes on a tough portfolio as major industrial projects involved in mining and energy are high-profile and often controversial. In her first week in office, Pacific NorthWest LNG cancelled its $11.4-billion project, citing poor global markets.

The project was one of several leading proposed liquefied natural gas projects — none of which have been built — promoted by the former B.C. Liberal government. The Pacific NorthWest LNG project was opposed by environmentalists and some First Nations and scientists. Another potential controversy is brewing over Taseko’s proposed $1.1-billion Prosperity gold and copper mine in the Interior, twice rejected by the federal government and opposed by the Tsilhqot’in Nation. The company was granted an extensive drilling permit in early July, in the dying days of the B.C. Liberal government. Continue Reading →

First Nations in Victoria court to stop mining permit – by Sarah Petrescu (Victoria Times Colonist – August 1, 2017)

First Nations leaders, elders and community groups gathered on the Victoria courthouse steps Monday morning in support of Tsilhqot’in First Nations chiefs hoping to overturn a drilling permit issued to Taseko Mines in the last days of the B.C. Liberal government.

“We’re here to stop this permit and I think we will,” said Chief Russell Myers Ross from the Yunesit’in First Nation, who was joined by Chief Roger William from the Xeni Gwet’in First Nation.

The Tsilhqot’in are petitioning the Supreme Court for an interlocutory injunction to stop exploratory drilling around Teztan Biny (Fish) Lake, a traditional hunting, fishing, medicine gathering and spiritual region. Continue Reading →

Mines can create Indigenous middle class in Ring of Fire: Opinion – by Stan Sudol (Toronto Star – August 1, 2017)

Ontario needs to follow the lead of Nunavut, where Inuit communities have benefitted from successful gold and iron ore mines.

It’s been 10 years since the world-class Ring of Fire mineral district was discovered in the isolated James Bay Lowlands, about 500 kms northeast of Thunder Bay. Not one mine has been built.

During those 10 years, the equally isolated territory of Nunavut has built two gold mines (Agnico Eagle’s Meadowbank and TMAC Resources’ Doris) and one iron ore operation (Baffinland’s Mary River).

A fourth gold mine (Agnico Eagle) should be in production in 2019 — and Sabina Gold and Silver Corp. A junior exploration company with a very rich precious metal deposit has just been given continued development approvals by the Nunavut Impact Review Board. Continue Reading →

Battle brewing over niobium mine bid near James Bay – by Ainslie Cruickshank (Toronto Star – July 30, 2017)

Moose Cree First Nation says protecting lands could help Canada meet climate, UN biodiversity commitments.

A battle is brewing just south of James Bay between Moose Cree First Nation and a resource company that wants to develop the world’s next niobium mine in the heart of its traditional territory.

For now, NioBay Metal Inc. wants a drilling permit to confirm the results of an exploration program undertaken in the 1960s. Down the road, the company has plans to develop an underground mine to produce niobium, a metal that helps make lighter, stronger steel.

NioBay says the mine will cause minimal environmental damage and offers big benefits for Moose Cree, but the First Nation fears otherwise. The proposed mine site sits near the shore of the South Bluff Creek, a culturally significant area for Moose Cree members that borders the North French River Watershed, a region they consider protected. Now, they want the province to protect it too. Continue Reading →