30th June 2015

Avalon banks on new ‘blood metals’ rule for Canada’s tin mine success – by Cecilia Jamasmie (Mining.com – June 30, 2015)


Canada’s Avalon Rare Metals (TSX:AVL), until now mostly known for its incursion in the rare earths market, is proceeding with a $1.3 million work program in South-western Nova Scotia to reopen a historic tin-indium mine.

The company, working on completing a Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) for the project by November this year, is betting on recently approved legislation in Europe, which bans all products containing conflict minerals from war zones in Africa.

Speaking at the 128th Annual Meeting of The Nova Scotia Mining Society late in June, Avalon’s President and CEO Don Bubar said the European Union anti “blood metals” rules, together with the U.S. Dodd-Frank Act, which forces US stock exchange-listed companies to disclose the use of minerals from a conflict zone in their supply chains, gives Avalon’s tin project huge advantages.

The miner was granted a special exploration licence to search 22 claims totalling 356.12 hectares. It also received a $40,000 project grant from the province earlier this year to assist with test drilling.

“We’re hopeful, at this point,” Natural Resources Minister Zach Churchill told MINING.com in an interview mid-June, adding that since market prices for tin have improved, the Nova Scotia government is optimistic about the prospects at the location. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Critical, Strategic and Rare Earth Minerals and Metals | 0 Comments

29th June 2015

Corners Tower construction delayed over fears of abandoned coal mine (CBC News Edmonton – June 28, 2015)


At least 153 mines once cut through underground Edmonton, historian says

A nearly forgotten part of Edmonton’s history has delayed a condo project in the city’s core. The lot on the corner of 95th Street and Jasper Avenue is scheduled to be the site of Corners Tower, a 28-storey development by Edmonton-based BCM Homes.

Right now, it’s little more than a hole in the ground. The project has been delayed due to fears that there might be one — perhaps two — abandoned coal mines under the site.

Construction is on hold while geological testing is done to check for mines. BCM did not respond to calls for comment. One local historian said old mines are something every developer working near the river valley should be aware of.

“This has been a chronic problem for a better part of a century,” said author Ken Tingley, the city’s former historian laureate.

Coal mining used to be a major industry in Edmonton. Between 1880 and 1970, Tingley said, at least 153 mines were dug, creating countless tunnels that spider-web under the city. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Coal | 0 Comments

29th June 2015

Potash Corp tussle could be win for BHP – by Amanda Saunders (Australian Financial Review – June 29, 2015)


A takeover tussle between two of the world’s biggest potash players could have an unlikely winner: BHP Billiton.

Analysts say a deal between Canada’s Potash Corp and Germany’s K+S will mean the remaining players in the market have increased pricing power over the next decade.

BHP has its foot on a potash megaproject called Jansen in Canada, which CEO Andrew Mackenzie has said is the best potash asset in the world.

But BHP is yet to decide whether to develop it could hinge the success of exploration and acquisitions in its other two key growth commodities: oil and copper.

Mr Mackenzie told The Australian Financial Review this month that BHP may have to choose between copper, potash and conventional oil in about five years, and could take on partners or exit one of the plays to protect its progressive dividend.

Deutsche mining analyst Paul Young said a Potash Corp deal with K+S would probably be positive for BHP. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Australia Mining, BHP Billiton, Canada Mining, Europe Mining, International Media Resource Articles, Potash/Phosphate, Saskatchewan Mining | 0 Comments

29th June 2015

Uncertainties in Canada’s resource sector – by Janet Guttsman (Canadian Lawyer Magazine – June 29, 2015)


Existing and future land claims and doubts on environmental rules have added a layer of uncertainty to an already difficult environment in the Canadian mining and resource sector, as companies struggle for development cash in a nervous and unsettled market.

With oil prices sagging, and global capital markets looking askance at mining and resources, lawyers say both the Tsilhqot’in Nation v. British Columbia aboriginal land rights case, and the new recommendations and likely regulations after the Mount Polley tailings dam disaster are adding to the gloom.

“These developments, Tsilhqot’in and Mount Polley, have added to the considerations that investors consider when they are looking at investing in Canada,” says Paul Cassidy, a partner in the business law group at McCarthy Tétrault LLP in Vancouver. “Are they using these two factors as the tipping point to make or not make an investment decision? I think that’s too hard to say. The investors we deal with are much too sophisticated to rely on one mine incident or one court decision as a tipping point.”

The 2014 Tsilhqot’in Nation v. British Columbia case was the Supreme Court’s first declaration of aboriginal title, a ruling that the band holds title to land in the interior of British Columbia that it has used over generations. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Non-Mining Issues, Canada Mining, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media, Oil and Gas Sector-Politics and Image | 0 Comments

29th June 2015

PAID CONTENT: How Canada’s mining sector is addressing children’s rights (The Guardian – June 29, 2015)


As early adopters of the Children’s Rights and Business Principles, Canadian mining companies are pioneering models to support children and families

Canada is home to more than half of the world’s publicly-traded mining companies, which have more than 8,000 mineral projects across six continents – from exploration through to construction and production to closure. Many of these projects are located in the world’s least developed countries, where children under the age of 18 make up nearly half of the local populations.

These vulnerable children can be disproportionately affected by the impact of mining operations. They are more likely to be involved in accidents with site vehicles, are at a greater risk of violence from construction sub-contractors or security forces, and have lower tolerance thresholds to extractive emissions, putting them in grave danger from health and development complications.

They also risk not having a voice as they are often under-represented in stakeholder engagement and community relations. Children are more vulnerable and need particular consideration by companies. Read the rest of this entry »

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

26th June 2015

Lutsel K’e First Nation says board caved to De Beers in Snap Lake decision – by Guy Quenneville (CBC News North – June 26, 2015)


First Nation’s land manager says De Beers issued ‘ultimatum’ to board to have dissolved solids limit increased

The manager of environment for the Lutsel K’e Dene First Nation (LKDFN) says the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board has caved in to pressure from De Beers Canada, the owner of the N.W.T.’s Snap Lake diamond mine.

On Thursday, the board recommended changes to De Beers’ water licence for Snap Lake — changes that De Beers hopes will make it easier for the company to manage a higher than expected volume of underground water rich in total dissolved solids, and which, according to the company, are needed to keep the mine from closing prematurely.

But Peter Unger, the manager of wildlife, lands and environment for the Lutsel K’e Dene First Nation, says De Beers is just playing hardball to get what it wants

“It’s very difficult to not see that as a form of threat, really,” said Unger. “That is one of the things that disturbs us: the mining company was able to come in and basically issue an ultimatum to the board. And it kind of looks like that ultimatum worked.” Read the rest of this entry »

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

26th June 2015

Commentary: Safety first for a new generation of Cree miners – by Daniel Bland (Northern Miner – June 26, 2015)

The Northern Miner, first published in 1915, during the Cobalt Silver Rush, is considered Canada’s leading authority on the mining industry.

“Working underground for me is like working in your basement for you.” That’s the first thing Marcelin Bruneau tells the 12 young Crees sitting in front of him. That gets their interest. “When I started mining in 1930,” he continues, “there were no rules about safety underground.” A wry smile, some mental math and confused looks among the Crees prompts the admission: “Bon. Maybe not 1930. But a long, long time ago!”

Marcelin Bruneau has spent more than forty years working as an underground miner. He got what he calls his first real job as a teenager in the early 1970s when he was hired by Noranda Mines as an underground helper. That was the beginning of a mining career that would take him not only across Canada — to Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba and B.C. — but overseas to Australia and Indonesia and see him work with over 20 mining companies and contractors.

In 2008, Bruneau was hired as an instructor by the Centre de Formation Professionnelle in the mining town of Val-d’Or, Que. His experience made him a natural and he spent five years delivering a six-month training program in underground ore extraction to students from the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region of southwestern Quebec.

Then, with mines under construction farther north on James Bay Cree land and job opportunities for Crees on the horizon, Bruneau remembered an old friend and accepted a new challenge. Read the rest of this entry »

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

26th June 2015

TMAC Resources Inc boosts IPO to $135 million on strong demand – by Peter Koven (National Post – June 25, 2015)

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

TORONTO — The mining sector’s first initial public offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange since 2012 is shaping up to be a big success.

The IPO of TMAC Resources Inc. has been upsized by $30 million because of overwhelming investor demand, according to sources familiar with the transaction. TMAC is now planning to raise $135 million, and as much as $155 million if the banks sell the entire over-allotment. One source said it is a “safe assumption” that will happen.

TMAC plans to use the money to develop the Hope Bay gold project in Nunavut. The IPO values the Toronto-based company at between $446 million and $466 million.

It is a very impressive debut given the rough state of the mining sector, and the junior mining sector in particular. Metal prices have been weak, and smaller companies like TMAC have struggled to raise money. IPOs have been non-existent in mining because of poor demand, even though they have been very popular in other sectors of the Canadian economy this year.

The success of the TMAC offering will be interpreted as proof that market conditions are turning around. But sources said it is largely about the track record of the TMAC team. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Gold and Silver | 0 Comments

25th June 2015

GLOBE EDITORIAL: It’s not as if it’s the Iranians – let Australians mine our uranium (Globe and Mail – June 25, 2015)

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.

There’s no reason at all to object to the decision of Greg Rickford, the Minister of Natural Resources, to allow an Australian company, Paladin Energy Ltd., to develop a uranium mine in Newfoundland and Labrador, 140 kilometres northeast of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, with Australians holding the majority of the shares.

On the contrary, the odd thing is that Paladin had to seek permission to do so, as a foreign corporation – over and above the similarly unnecessary process of the foreign investment review under the Investment Canada Act, with its mysterious “net benefit” criterion. In the rejected takeover by BHP Billiton of Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan in 2010, Ottawa even more mysteriously declared Potash to be a “strategic asset,” not a term used in the ICA.

The federal government has had a “non-resident ownership policy in the uranium mining sector” since 1987. The policy allows for an exemption from the requirement of at least 51-per-cent Canadian ownership if there aren’t enough Canadians who want to build the prospective uranium mine in question. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Australia Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Newfoundland and Labrador Mining, Uranium | 0 Comments

24th June 2015

Green shoots emerge in withered gold mining sector – by Nicole Mordant (Reuters U.S. – June 23, 2015)


VANCOUVER – The global gold mining industry is showing signs of life as merger activity picks up and industry veterans set up new companies and hunt for projects, taking advantage of weak prices to lay the groundwork for a rebound.

Almost four years after the price of gold began tumbling, cash-starved and debt-ridden miners are selling, merging or closing shop, pushing the value of completed gold mining mergers and acquisitions in the first five months of this year to $3 billion, twice what it was in the same period in 2014, according to Thomson Reuters GFMS, a metals research consultancy.

At the same time, with stock markets near record highs, some fund managers are examining the sector. In the first quarter, Paris-based asset manager Carmignac Gestion bought 11.65 million shares of Goldcorp (G.TO), the highest valued gold mining company, making it the Vancouver-based miner’s eighth biggest shareholder, Thomson Reuters data show. Carmignac declined to be interviewed for this article.

“The perception that mining equities show good value is starting to spread,” said Hedley Widdup, a fund manager at Melbourne-based Lion Selection Group, which invests in small mining companies and explorers. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Gold and Silver | 0 Comments

24th June 2015

Vale Looks to Sell Up to 30% of Metals Unit in Possible IPO – by Juan Pablo Spinetto (Bloomberg News – June 24, 2015)


Vale SA, the world’s largest nickel producer, is considering selling about 25 percent to 30 percent of its base metals business in an initial public offering.

Work on the transaction continues, although the Rio de Janeiro-based miner will only proceed if nickel and copper prices reach “appropriate” levels, Investor Relations Director Rogerio Nogueira said in Sao Paulo Wednesday.

“We have the vision of doing this IPO to create value,” he said. “It was never thought as a way of getting cash.”

Vale, whose iron-ore business has been buffeted by a 50 percent price collapse since late 2013, may hold the base metals offering in two tranches as it seeks to unlock value at a time of rising profit and output after years of operational setbacks. Vale hired Canadian law firm Stikeman Elliott LLP for the possible IPO, people with knowledge of the matter said earlier this month.

While Nogueira declined to give a valuation for the base metals business during his presentation, Chief Financial Officer Luciano Siani said in a Bloomberg Television interview in December that it may be worth $30 billion to $35 billion. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Copper, International Media Resource Articles, Iron Ore, Latin America Mining, Nickel, Vale | 0 Comments

23rd June 2015

Australia’s Paladin Energy Ltd wins historic approval to operate Canadian uranium mine – by Peter Koven (National Post – June 23, 2015)

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

Paladin Energy Ltd. has achieved a first for an Australian company: It has won the right to operate a uranium mine in Canada.

The approval from Ottawa, announced Monday by the company, is a signal that Canada welcomes more foreign investment in its uranium industry. And that has positive implications for a struggling sector that could really use some outside capital.

“This is an historic decision that could have implications for all uranium companies and projects in Canada,” Raymond James analyst David Sadowski said in a note.

Paladin said the federal government approved its request to be the majority owner and operator of the Michelin uranium mine in Labrador. The company hopes to begin production when the sputtering uranium market rebounds.

This approval was unique because Canada has a Non-Resident Ownership Policy (NROP) governing its uranium sector. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Australia Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Newfoundland and Labrador Mining, Uranium | 0 Comments

23rd June 2015

Mining to face worker shortage: Report – by Carol Mulligan (Sudbury Star – June 23, 2015)

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

Few children say they want to be miners when they grow up, which is one of the reasons the mining industry will experience a serious shortage of workers in the next decade.

Weak commodity prices have resulted in a lull in mining, but the Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiRH) is projecting the industry will be short more than 106,000 workers in 10 years unless the situation is turned around.

MiHR published its 2015 mining labour market report recently, an in-depth forecast for the next two, five and 10 years about the existing workforce, demographics and diversity, and other challenges.

The report is meant for companies, unions, post-secondary school institutions, government and other stakeholders, said MiHR executive director Ryan Montpellier.

Among the key findings in the report are: Read the rest of this entry »

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

22nd June 2015

What was it like, Dad? – by Brent Cook (Exploration Insights/Kitco.com – June 19, 2015)



It was tough kid. We were just coming out of the most perfect spring. The fruit trees were all in blossom, streams filled with fish, deer abounded, and we were all feeling pretty right with the world—we owned it and were the chosen ones.

Then we headed out across the flats, believing the prophets that the next paradise, just over the horizon, was even better. But the horizon never came, the land turned to salt flats and dust; the temperature reached 110°, day after day after day. We burned and suffered. The roving bandits knew we were doomed and had no interest in what little we had left. Each promising oasis was a mirage and one by one we lost our way, numbed and staggering in all directions. We lost nearly everyone on that journey which began so optimistically—and naively.

It was brutal and devastating kid; I hope to never go through that again. But some of us did survive to carry on, and I’m here to tell you about it.

Yeah, right, I’ve heard that, but like, what about the 1997 to 2002 mining bust? Read the rest of this entry »

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

22nd June 2015

Canadian mining industry feeling the sting from China’s steel surplus – by Rachelle Younglai (Globe and Mail – June 22, 2015)

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.

The steel industry is about to go from bad to worse. China, the world’s biggest consumer of steel, needs less metal. The Chinese housing market, responsible for using the bulk of steel, is bulging with empty properties.

As a result, the country, also the largest steel producer, is swimming in the metal and exporting more to get rid of it.  “Things are getting worse and I don’t see any possibility of a rebound in under three years,” said Tim Murray, managing partner with investment adviser J Capital Research Ltd.

“What I have seen actually is a deepening of the crisis.” Although the country is aiming for economic growth of 7.5 per cent – a healthy clip that miners hope will help turn the commodities market around – there are alarming signs China is struggling with the overcapacity in its steel industry.

Last year, China’s steel exports jumped 50 per cent. The surge came in the same year that steel consumption eased 3 per cent, according to the World Steel Association. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Asia Mining, British Columbia Mining, Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Coal, Iron Ore, Labrador Iron Trough, Quebec Mining | 0 Comments

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