24th October 2014

The indigenous land rights ruling that could transform Canada – by Martin Lukacs (The Guardian – October 21, 2014)

http://www.theguardian.com/us

Indigenous rights offer a path to a radically more just and sustainable country – which is why the Canadian government is bent on eliminating them

The unrest is palpable. In First Nations across Canada, word is spreading of a historic court ruling recognizing Indigenous land rights. And the murmurs are turning to action: an eviction notice issued to a railway company in British Columbia; a park occupied in Vancouver; lawsuits launched against the Enbridge tar sands pipeline; a government deal reconsidered by Ontario Algonquins; and sovereignty declared by the Atikamekw in Quebec.

These First Nations have been emboldened by this summer’s Supreme Court of Canada William decision, which recognized the aboriginal title of the Tsilhqot’in nation to 1,750 sq km of their land in central British Columbia – not outright ownership, but the right to use and manage the land and to reap its economic benefits.

The ruling affects all “unceded” territory in Canada – those lands never signed away through a treaty or conquered by war. Which means that over an enormous land mass – most of British Columbia, large parts of Quebec and Atlantic Canada, and a number of other spots – a new legal landscape is emerging that offers the prospect of much more responsible land stewardship. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining, International Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

24th October 2014

News Release: Goldeye Explorations Limited’s Weebigee Project: A High-Grade Gold Discovery in Ontario’s Sandy Lake Greenstone Belt – by Robin Luke Webster (The Ontario Prospector – Winter 2015)

http://www.ontarioprospectors.com/home/

Robin Luke Webster is the Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Community Relations, Goldeye Explorations Limited

In 1986, a former Inco Geophysicist, Blaine Webster, founded a private company to stake mineral exploration claims near Sandy Lake, 225km north of Red Lake, Ontario. At the time, he could hardly have imagined that it would take nearly 30 years to launch a comprehensive exploration and drilling program on the property. In the ensuing years, the company, Goldeye Explorations Limited, obtained a public listing, explored a number of other mineral properties, and made an exciting discovery at its Tyrrell project near Shining Tree, Ontario.

While Goldeye carried out limited exploration after initially staking its claims at Sandy Lake, the project was put on indefinite hold soon after due to opposition from nearby Sandy Lake First Nation (SLFN). Knowing the significant mineral potential of the Sandy Lake area, however, and the benefits that a discovery could bring for both Goldeye shareholders and the local community, Blaine maintained Goldeye’s interest in the claims and focused on building a positive and mutually beneficial relationship with the members of SLFN. When Goldeye sold the Tyrrell project to Temex Resources Corp. in 2012, its focus returned to Sandy Lake.

Guided by Ontario’s new mining act, Goldeye ramped up its ongoing efforts to advance the project and in 2013, after a process of extensive consultations and discussions, SLFN agreed to the terms of a comprehensive Exploration Agreement that made it possible for the long envisioned work program to commence. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Gold and Silver, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media, Ontario Mining | 0 Comments

23rd October 2014

Define ‘consultation’ and ‘social licence’ – by Jeffrey Simpson (Globe and Mail – October 22, 2014)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

What does it mean to be “consulted?” Does it mean to give an opinion and to be heard? To have your views prevail? To exercise a veto? We don’t know, and as a result of this, much confusion surrounds public decisions, especially for projects that require this amorphous idea of “consultation” or “social licence” to proceed.

Who defines “social licence?” Interest groups such as NGOs or businesses? Courts? Public opinion, but as measured by what? Polls? Write-in campaigns? Social media comments? Street demonstrations? Elections?

The confusion about “consultation” and “social licence” deepens when it comes to Canada’s First Nations. Courtesy of court rulings and depending on their title or land claim or treaty, aboriginals have to be “consulted,” their interests “accommodated,” and, if title is demonstrated, give their assent – except in the face of a “pressing and substantial” public interest.

What might that be, the “public interest?” Take the Northern Gateway pipeline to pump Alberta bitumen oil through northwestern British Columbia to Asia-Pacific markets.

The three-person National Energy Board panel that exhaustively studied the pipeline proposal – and supported it, with 209 conditions – declared that “the public interest is the interest of all Canadians.” Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

22nd October 2014

Hopes for Ontario’s Ring of Fire doused as mining companies grow wary – by Rachelle Younglai (Globe and Mail – October 22, 2014)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

Ontario’s “Ring of Fire” mineral belt was supposed to be a $60-billion natural resources treasure trove that would bring employment and economic prosperity to a remote part of the province’s north. It hasn’t worked out that way.

The project’s key player has given up, leaving the future of the deposit in question and hurting prospects that it will ever reach the lofty expectations of politicians.

Today, not much is happening in the Ring, a 5,000-square-kilometre crescent of mostly chromite in the boggy James Bay lowlands, 500 kilometres north of Thunder Bay.

The region was said to be so rich in resources that it would rival Sudbury’s nickel basin and Alberta’s oil sands. Instead, the area remains undeveloped, a victim of the global slump in commodity prices and bureaucratic red tape.

“I’m disappointed that it hasn’t advanced more. It’s a long time, seven years after discovery,” said Neil Novak, the geologist who made the first discovery in the Ring and is now exploring for other metals as the chief executive officer of Black Widow Resources Inc.

In addition to the complete lack of infrastructure – there are no roads or power in the area – there is no real plan on how to mine the chromite, which is used to harden steel. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

20th October 2014

Rise of ‘social licence’: Claiming they speak for their community, protest groups are undermining the law – by Jen Gerson (National Post – October 18, 2014)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

It started with the War in the Woods, mass protests that quashed plans for clear-cutting in Clayoquot Sound.

Then came decisive demonstrations over airports, cellphone towers, wind farms, biotechnology — and one gas plant so hated by Ontario residents that the Liberals under former premier Dalton McGuinty allegedly spent $1-billion to cancel it.

Now it’s pipelines versus the people: protests over Alberta’s oil sands, and the metal tubes meant to carry its bitumen to market.

The outcome is uncertain. But dozens of recent developments have been overturned by the rise of “social licence” — the idea that community buy-in is as important, or more, than regulators’ approvals.

Or is it just NIMBYism by another name? Who speaks for “the people”? Who decides whether social licence is granted or not?

“You want people to feel heard in their concerns,” says Brian Lee Crowley, the managing director of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute for Public Policy in Ottawa. “But I believe there’s a whole group of people who have become free riders on this concept of social licence, people who are dyed-in-the-wool opponents — whatever it is … They say, ‘Oh, you must not be allowed to do this unless you have social licence. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Corporate Social Responsibility | 0 Comments

17th October 2014

NEWS RELEASE: New Polling shows Northern Ontario First Nation residents’ perceptions on energy and mining

(October 16, 2014, Toronto, ON) New polling of Northern Ontario First Nation community residents that explores their attitudes towards renewable energy and resource develop was presented today by Oraclepoll Research President Dr. Paul Seccaspina at the Renewables & Mining Summit and Exhibition.

Issues surveyed in Northern Ontario First Nation Residents’ Perceptions on Energy and Mining, included:

• First Nation community residents’ attitude towards new energy generation sources (including renewable, nuclear and natural gas).
• Willingness to pay for new energy generation sources.
• Attitude towards provincial government renewable energy and conservation initiatives.
• Acceptability scenarios involving incentives and energy sources associated with a hypothetical mine development.

The research was conducted between September 26 and October 2, 2014 utilizing live person-to-person telephone calling to a random selected audience of First Nation community residents. Of the 200 respondents, a minimum of eight percent lived in communities not connected to the Ontario electricity grid and rely on diesel generation for electricity. The poll was commissioned by Environmental Communication Options, a firm actively engaged in a range of renewable, resource-focused and First Nation matters. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Mining Power Issues | 0 Comments

17th October 2014

Renewable energy a tough sell for prospective RoF developers – by Henry Lazenby (MiningWeekly.com – October 16, 2014)

http://www.miningweekly.com/

RONTO (miningweekly.com) – Among the many challenges facing as many as 20 mining companies holding claims in the Ring of Fire (RoF) mineral region of Northern Ontario, the most significant might be the limited infrastructure.

However, besides having to deal with exploration, project planning, First Nations negotiations and local capacity building, project proponents were under mounting pressure from stricter legislation, environmental lobby groups and locals to include renewable-energy sources in their future project plans.

Ontario government RoF Secretariat senior policy adviser Blaine Bouchard on Thursday told delegates at the Renewables and Mining Summit and Exhibition, in Toronto, that the nine-member group of Matawa group First Nations, who inhabit the province’s Far North, had made it clear in multilateral discussions that current diesel-based electricity generation was prohibitive of economic development and posed serious environmental impacts.

The First Nations living in the remote region were completely dependent on diesel electricity generation for their energy needs, owing to the province’s energy grid only reaching as far north as the Dryden region. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Mining Power Issues, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

16th October 2014

Matawa First Nations building an Aboriginal workforce – by Rick Garrick (Wawatay News – October 15, 2014)

http://www.wawataynews.ca/

Matawa First Nations is building an Aboriginal workforce through the Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment and Training Services (KKETS) Ring of Fire Aboriginal Training Alliance (RoFATA) training programs.

“(The trainees are aiming for) full-time employment within the mining sector,” said Mary Meshake, RoFATA career development officer. “There’s a lot of future potential developments that are taking place outside our communities and most of the trainees that are in (the KKETS) programs are really excited to be a part of what is going to be happening.”

Eight RoFATA trainees recently completed the 15-week Welding Level 1 program at Grand River Employment and Training in Six Nations while another 10 trainees completed the 10-week Heavy Equipment Operators program at the Operating Engineers Training Institute in Morrisburg in early July.

“We’re currently running our Security program, which started on Aug. 25,” Meshake said, noting there are 13 trainees in the Security program. “We utilized the new (regional) training facility in Neskantaga.”

The four-week theory portion of the Security program was completed on Sept. 19, with the practical portion scheduled for Sept. 22-Oct. 10 in Ginoogaming. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media | 0 Comments

15th October 2014

Three big ‘whoppers’ told about the Ring of Fire – by Jody Porter (CBC News Thunder Bay – October 15, 2014)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay

‘Ridiculous’ to compare northern Ontario mineral find to the Alberta oil sands, expert says

Once called Canada’s ‘next oil sands’, the Ring of Fire mining development area in northern Ontario has yet to live up to its promise.

Federal Treasury Board Chair Tony Clement called the Ring of Fire “a game-changer for Canada” with “potential impact…akin to what the oil sands did for Alberta and Canada” just last year.

But that was before Cliffs Natural Resources halted its plans for a chromite mine in November 2013. Now the future of the Ring of Fire is far less certain, and even less likely to live up to what some say were always overinflated claims of its potential.

Here are three big ‘whoppers’ told about the Ring of Fire.

1. Chromium is a rare and valuable mineral.

From the Ontario Chamber of Commerce 2014 report ‘Uncovering the economic potenital of Ontario’s Ring of Fire : “The most promising discovery [in the Ring of Fire] is the first commercial quantities of chromite in North America. Based on current projections, the deposit is significant enough to sustain activity for a century.” Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

14th October 2014

Uncertainty clouds the investment outlook of Quebec’s mining industry – by Bertrand Marotte (Globe and Mail – October 14, 2014)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

MONTREAL — Quebec’s attempts to put an end to years of image-corroding uncertainty and lack of clarity for the mining industry are getting mixed reviews.

The Liberal government of Premier Philippe Couillard has revived plans to accelerate natural resource extraction in the vast northern reaches of the province. And the new Mining Act has helped bring greater predictability and transparency to a political environment many critics said was damaging Quebec’s reputation as an attractive jurisdiction for mining investment.

But problems and unresolved issues remain, even factoring in the current global commodities downturn, say some industry players and observers.

Take the case of Strateco Resources Inc., which recently shut down its uranium mining project in the Otish Mountains of northern Quebec after years of what its chief executive says have been frustrating dealings with provincial authorities. “This has been extremely difficult,” Strateco president and chief executive officer Guy Hébert said.

For years, the government declined to grant Strateco the right to start underground exploration at the site, known as Matoush, despite the company jumping through hoops to get 22 permits from Quebec at different phases of the project, he said. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Quebec Mining, Uranium | 0 Comments

9th October 2014

Make no little plans, my son [Economic planning northern Ontario] – by David Robinson (Northern Ontario Business – October 2014)

Established in 1980, Northern Ontario Business  provides Canadians and international investors with relevant, current and insightful editorial content and business news information about Ontario’s vibrant and resource-rich North.  

Dave Robinson is an economist with the Institute for Northern Ontario Research and Development at Laurentian University.drobinson@laurentian.ca 

As an economist, I often get calls from the media about national and provincial issues. As an economist who studies economic development in Northern Ontario, I don’t get many calls. Most of those are asking for a speaker and almost none want my advice on economic development. I have only had a few calls from First Nation communities. I’d like to think I know something about development, so why am I left sitting in a corner sad and lonely?

It could be because everyone knows that academics, including me, are pretty useless. I’d hate to think so, but it could be. It could be the economic development people in Northern Ontario are so good they don’t need academic advice. It could be that the province is doing such a good job that that no one needs independent research and advice from the ivory tower.

My guess is that that because Northern universities have never focused on economic development issues for the North, media people and economic development officers simply don’t think about heading to the campus for help. The exception is the Community Economic and Social Development program at Algoma University. More recently, Laurentian University has established a new School of Northern Development that will do research and provide courses on Northern Ontario development. Things are getting better, however slowly. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

7th October 2014

INDIGENOUS CANADIANS ARE BLOCKADING A MINE TO PROTEST POLLUTION – by Sarah Berman (Vice.com – October 6, 2014)

http://www.vice.com/en_ca

On Friday, Imperial Metals, the company responsible for Canada’s largest-ever mining waste spill, served an injunction application to indigenous protesters blocking roads to its Red Chris copper and gold mine near Iskut, British Columbia.

A group of Tahltan First Nation elders known as the Klabona Keepers have blocked access to the mine for the second time in two months over concerns that Red Chris is too similar to Mount Polley, a sister mine that spewed 24 million cubic meters of toxic sludge and wastewater into one of the province’s biggest salmon spawning lakes on August 4.

“As a result of the blockades and the conduct of the blockaders, no person and no vehicle are able to access the project site along the access roads,” reads Imperial Metals’ injunction application, which was delivered yesterday morning. “Red Chris has been forced to severely limit its construction activities at the project site, and if the blockade continues, will be forced to halt them altogether.”

Resource companies often use injunctions to break up protests. For example, on October 3, 2013, a company called SWN Resources was granted an injunction to remove Elsipogtog First Nation protesters from a shale gas exploration site north of Moncton, New Brunswick. Two weeks later, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) enforced the injunction with an over-the-top display of force that included beanbag guns, police dogs, snipers, and plenty of pepper spray. Needless to say, shit escalated quickly. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, British Columbia Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Mining Environmental Accidents | 0 Comments

6th October 2014

NEWS RELEASE: NWT Government Releases Plan to Implement Mineral Development Strategy

(Yellowknife, NT – October 6, 2014) In a powerful statement to show that the NWT is “open for business”, the government of the NWT (GNWT) has unveiled NWT Mineral Development Strategy – GNWT Implementation Plan 2014-2015, its first annual plan to support the NWT Mineral Development Strategy with appropriate actions to ensure the continued growth of the NWT minerals industry.

According to Brooke Clements, President of the NWT & Nunavut Chamber of Mines, “This implementation plan lays out the first tangible actions that are designed to improve the investment climate for mining and exploration companies in the NWT. We are hopeful that these actions will help support the continued growth of the NWT mineral resource industry. A healthy and growing mineral industry will help ensure that sustainable and long-term benefits continue to accrue to all residents of the NWT.”

In his Minister’s Message, NWT Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment David Ramsay stated, “Through a partnership effort with the NWT and Nunavut Chamber of Mines, we were proud to release the NWT Mineral Development Strategy in the fall of 2013.

This Implementation Plan puts that Strategy into action by establishing concrete goals, objectives, and timelines. Putting these initiatives in place will set the wheels in motion to restore a positive investment climate, which is important if we are to discover new deposits and establish new mines to sustain and grow our economy.”

Some highlights of the implementation plan include: Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining | 0 Comments

6th October 2014

First Nations chiefs seek to develop new tribal park in B.C. – by Mark Hume (Globe and Mail – October 6, 2014)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

VANCOUVER — The concept of what a park is and how it functions to protect the landscape is being redefined in British Columbia by First Nations in ways that some might find surprising.

At a totem pole-raising ceremony on the weekend, the Tsilhqot’in First Nation announced plans to create Dasiqox Tribal Park, the latest in a series of declarations by native organizations aimed at protecting massive swaths of territory.

Dasiqox covers about 300,000 hectares of some of the most spectacular landscapes in Canada. The Valhalla Wilderness Society, which has long advocated protecting the area, describes it as “a vast mountain enclave for grizzlies” and other wildlife.

Unlike federally designated national parks and provincial enclaves, the First Nations concept in B.C. aims to create protected areas under the jurisdiction of native people, with potential room for resource extraction. While not new, these parks allow First Nations to control logging, mining and other activities in a particular region, which might otherwise be open to unfettered use by business.

In a series of interviews, Tsilhqot’in chiefs made it clear that their idea of what a park is, is very different from what most Canadians might think. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, British Columbia Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

6th October 2014

NDP critic knocks Liberals over Ring of Fire – Michael Mantha Letter to the Editor (Sudbury Star – October 4, 2014)

The Sudbury Star is the City of Greater Sudbury’s daily newspaper.

Michael Mantha is the MPP for Algoma-Manitoulin and the NDP Critic for Northern Development and Mines.

Re: Minister defends record on Ring of Fire

Northern Development and Mines Minister Michael Gravelle’s letter to the editor criticizing NDP Leader Andrea Horwath on the Ring of Fire demonstrates the Liberal government’s failure to develop the project and Premier Wynne’s lack of leadership for Northern Ontario.

The minister claims his government is leading the way to drive development in the Ring of Fire and that significant progress has been made despite his government’s widely reported failures on the project. Ask Northerners what they think about the Liberal record on Ring of Fire.

After lack of action on the Ring of Fire over the last seven years and a vague announcement of creating a development corporation, the Wynne government gave itself a deadline of 60 days to create that corporation that was to include partners in industry and First Nations. What the Wynne government produced, in order to meet its self-imposed deadline, was a board comprised of four government bureaucrats sitting at the table by themselves.

The Wynne government failed to bring industry together. Premier Wynne and Minister Gravelle failed to bring First Nations together. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Northern Ontario Politics, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

Advertising Info
Rated Top Mining Blog of 2011
The Northern Miner
Mining IQ
Canadian Mining Journal
Northern Life
IBA Research network
NetNewsLedger
Earth Explorer