Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery (1 of 6) – Excerpt from Fortunes Found Canadian Mining Success – by Michael Barnes

Michael Barnes is the author of more than fifty books about characters, communities, mining, and police work. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and makes his home in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada. While living in Northern Ontario most of his life, he has come to know and admire those who make their living in the mining industry.

To order a copy of “Fortunes Found – Canadian Mining Success” go to: General Store Publishing House

For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

Ontario’s Ring of Fire Discovery

As the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Convention came to a close in March 2008, a group of industry influentials crowded the Imperial Room of the Royal York Hotel in Toronto for a luncheon to benefit Mining Matters, the mining education charity.

While they waited for the event to begin, a scratchy version of the stirring Johnny Cash song was played over the public address system. The fundraiser was in aid of charity, but the draw beyond the lunch was a claim-staking venture in the remote James Bay Lowlands, which was initiated in the late 1990s, and the events that followed. The series of properties that sparked the interest was dubbed — some say by Rob Cudney — “The Ring of Fire” because when it was further explored, the target area had the distinct shape of a broken circle or crescent with an original source as magma or molten rock from huge volcanic action.

The Cash song was really about love, but this mining play with the potential to create huge wealth for Canada and the expected much needed jobs and spinoff economic activity conjures up a mixture of emotions. The origin of the interest in the area came when two junior companies, Spider Resources and KWG Resources searched as a team for diamonds in 1997–98. They had optioned promising targets to De Beers, and one of these kimberlite targets was drilled and unexpectedly turned up evidence of copper and zinc. Continue Reading →

Honourable Michael Gravelle – Minister Northern Development, Mines and Forestry – Speech at PDAC Aboriginal Forum Toronto, Ontario – March 9, 2010

z-(L to R) Chris Hodgson, President of Ontario Mining Association; Jon Baird, PDAC President; Honourable Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry; Garry Clark, Executive Director of the Ontario Prospectors AssociationCHECK AGAINST DELIVERY

Good afternoon, everyone.

I would like to commend the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) Aboriginal Committee and all its partners for making this forum possible.

Events like this one are important for promoting a greater understanding of the mineral industry by Aboriginal people and encouraging their greater participation in the industry.

It is with that in mind that I have accepted the kind invitation to address the Forum today. 

What I would like to emphasize is that we all have a vested interest in promoting the sustainability of the mineral development sector.  And we all have a vested interest in maximizing the benefits of mining activity for all, including First Nations and Métis communities.

We must continue working together to make the changes that will help us achieve those common goals. 
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The 2010 PDAC Thayer Lindsley Award for International Mineral Discoveries – Perry Durning and Frank (Bud) Hillemeyer

(L to R) Joe Hinzer; Perry Durning; Frank (Bud) HillemeyerThe PDAC Thayer Lindsley International Mineral Discoveries Award recognizes an individual or a team of explorationists credited with a recent significant mineral discovery anywhere in the world. It reflects the global nature of mining and the fact that Canadians are making enormous contribution to this sector. This award is in memory of Thayer Lindsley, one of the greatest mine finders in all time.

Perry Durning and Frank (Bud) Hillemeyer are recognized for their outstanding record of grassroots discoveries in Mexico, particularly the San Sebastian silver-gold mine, the San Agustin gold deposit, the Pitarrilla silver deposit, and the Camino Rojo gold discovery.

Durning and Hillemeyer formed La Cuesta International in 1993 after roughly a decade together at Fischer-Watt Gold, an Arizona and Nevada-based mineral exploration firm.

La Cuesta’s first major discovery was the San Sebastian mine in Durango State, Mexico.

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The 2010 PDAC Viola R. MacMillan Award for Company or Mine Development – Ross J. Beaty

(L to R) Patricia Dillon PDAC Immediate Past President; Ross J. BeatyThe PDAC Viola R. MacMillan is named after the PDAC’s longest serving president. It honours a person who has demonstrated leadership in management and financing for the exploration and development of mineral resources.

Ross J. Beaty is honoured for successfully founding and operating nine resource companies, including Equinox Resources, Pan American Silver Corp., Northern Peru Copper Corp., Global Copper Corp., and Magma Energy Corp.

Beaty, who is foremost a geologist, says his ilk may be the only profession “paid to fail.” Of course, there are exceptions.

Since 1994, Beaty has raised more that $1 billion in capital and created shareholder wealth in excess of $4 billion.

Beaty, with a master’s degree in geology and a law degree, launched an empire in 1980 with the eponymous Beaty Geological, a contract geological services company that was later bought for shares in Beaty’s first public company, Equinox Resources. Equinox’s initial public offering, in 1985, netted $110,000.

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The 2010 PDAC Distinguished Service Award – Nicholas C. Carter

(L to R) Nicholas C. Carter; Tony Andrews PDAC Executive DirectorThe PDAC Distinguished Services Award recognizes an individual for one or more of the following: substantial contribution to the mineral exploration and mining development; considerable time and effort expended on behalf of the PDAC; outstanding contributions to the industry in finance, geology, geophysics, geochemistry research, or a related activity.

Nicholas C. Carter is being recognized for fostering mineral exploration and mining in Canada through his active role in a number of associations and professional societies.

Carter was born and raised in Little Long Lac, Ontario, not more than 200 yards from the headframe of the Little Long Lac gold mine. Carter’s father, a well known, meticulous mining engineer, who later managed the Little Long Lac mine, provided his son with a template for achievement.

Carter graduated from the University of New Brunswick in 1960 as a geologist and proceeded immediately to Michigan Technological University where he studied the iron formations of part of the Marquette Range as part of a master’s degree in geology.

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The 2010 PDAC Skookum Jim Award for Aboriginal Achievement in the Mineral Industry – Willie S. Keatainak

(L to R) Chief Glenn Nolan, 2nd VP PDAC; Willie S. KeatainakThe PDAC Skookum Jim Award is named after Skookum Jim, the Aboriginal leader of the group that discovered the Yukon Klondike goldfields, one of Canada’s most important mineral discoveries. Recipients of this award will have demonstrated exceptional achievement and/or service in a Canadian Aboriginal-run service business for the Canadian mining industry or a Canadian aboriginal exploration or mining company or made a significant individual contribution to the mineral industry either technically, through a business venture, or through a mineral discovery.

Willie S. Keatainak is recognized for his key role in negotiating the Raglan Agreement, encouraging  others to take advantage of the opportunities that the Raglan mine offers, and his longstanding involvement in Nuvumiut Developments, an Inuit community-based company serving the mining industry.

Keatainak is on a mission to better the lives of his people, the Inuit living in communities in far northern Quebec, especially those in his home village of Salluit, situated on the northern tip of the Ungava Peninsula.

In the early 1990s, as the mayor of Salluit, Keatainak acted as the chief negotiator on a team seeking long-term economic stability for Inuit communities through the development of Falconbridge Ltd.’s Raglan nickel depostis, emplaced in the nearby Cape Smith-Wakeham Bay ultramafic belt.

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The 2010 PDAC Environmental and Social Responsibility Award – De Beers Canada – Chantal LaVoie – COO De Beers Canada

(L to R) Scott Jobin-Bevans, 1st VP PDAC; Chantal LaVoie, COO De Beers CanadaThe PDAC Environmental and Social Responsibility Award recognizes an individual or organization demonstrating outstanding initiative, leadership and accomplishment in protecting and preserving the natural environment or in developing good community relations during an exploration program or operation of a mine.

De Beers Canada is recognized for establishing good community relations and ensuring environmental protection at its two diamond mines in Canada.

The company operates Snap Lake in the Northwest Territories and Victor in northern Ontario with about 850 full-time employees, and another 50 part-time and seasonal workers.

About 40% of Victor and one-quarter of Snap Lake employees are aboriginal.

Aboriginal communities are represented by four separate Impact Benefit Agreements at Snap Lake; three Impact Benefit Agreements and a Working Relationship Agreement are in place with the communities surrounding Victor.

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Donald S. Bubar, Avalon Rare Metals Inc. 2010 PDAC Awards Acceptance Speech

Ladies and gentlemen, Thank you very much.

As many of you are aware, since I joined the PDAC Board in 2004, I have been actively advocating for greater participation by aboriginal peoples in our industry and greater co-operation between companies and communities. Thor Lake has provided an opportunity to practice what I have been preaching and for Avalon to actively implement some of the community engagement principles of E3 Plus that PDAC has been encouraging all of its members to adopt.

In this regard, I have been very fortunate to have Bill Mercer, another vocal advocate for better CSR practice in our industry, as a committed and inspirational partner.

Perhaps the two most successful and innovative initiatives were the driller helper training program which is a largely a tribute to Bill’s prodigious energy and enthusiasm and the Naming Ceremony an ambitious undertaking organized by our equally energetic community advisor in Yellowknife, David Connelly.

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The 2010 PDAC Environmental and Social Responsibility Award – Avalon Rare Metals Inc. – Don Bubar

(L to R) Jon Baird, PDAC President; Bill Mercer, Avalon VP-Exploration; Don Bubar, Avalon President and CEOThe PDAC Environmental and Social Responsibility Award recognizes an individual or organization demonstrating outstanding initiative, leadership and accomplishment in protecting and preserving the natural environment or in developing good community relations during an exploration program or operation of a mine.

Avalon Rare Metals Inc. is being recognized for its responsible exploration practices with respect to community engagement and its encouragement of skills training and employment for aboriginal people.

Before applying for a land-use permit from the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board or setting foot on its new Thor Lake property in the Northwest Territories, Avalon President and CEO Don Bubar introduced himself with letters written to four Dene leader in communities around Thor Lake.

After several attempts at convening a meeting, Bubar was able to sit down with Dene leaders at a neutral location.

They were surprised that Avalon had not applied for a land-use  permit before requesting a meeting. Other companies either had received or applied for land-use permits and then sought permission to enter Dene land.

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The 2010 PDAC Prospectors of the Year Award Winners for the Ring of Fire Discovery in Northern Ontario – John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Richard Nemis, Neil D. Novak and Mac Watson

(L to R) Award Presenter, Edward Thompson; Prospectors of the Year Winners, Mac Watson, Richard E. Nemis, John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Neil D. Novak


For an extensive list of articles on this mineral discovery, please go to: Ontario’s Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery

The PDAC Bill Dennis Prospector of the Year Award honors the memory of past PDAC president Bill Dennis who was one of the association’s staunchest supporters during its formative years and a prominent and respected prospector. This award is presented to individuals or groups who have made a significant mineral discovery, offered noteworthy contributions to the PDAC, or have been involved in some important service or technological invention or innovation that helped improve the Canadian prospecting and exploration industry.

John D. Harvey, Donald Hoy, Richard Nemis, Neil D. Novak and Mac Watson are recognized for the significant base metals and chromite discoveries in northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire.

In 2002, Neil Novak, as vice-president of Spider Resources Inc., was seeking kimberlites in the James Bay lowlands in a joint venture with KWG Resources Inc.

Novak had found 1.1-billion-year-old, diamond-bearing kimberlites under 130 metres of sand and limestone. De Beers Canada Exploration, curious about Novak’s work, formed a JV with Spider-KWG to look at their geophysical and geochemical database.

Novak’s expertise led De Beers to launch a reverse-circulation drill program near McFauld’s Lake, northern Ontario.

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Key Economic Points About the Canadian Mining Sector – by Paul Stothart

Paul Stothart is vice-president, economic affairs of the Mining Association of Canada. He is responsible for advancing the industry’s interests regarding federal tax, trade, investment, transport and energy issues. www.mining.ca This column was originally published November, 2009.

Late summer and fall are always busy times for the mining industry on the economic policy front. Typically, the Mining Association of Canada releases its annual “Facts & Figures” report in August and also prepares a formal industry submission in advance of the meeting of federal, provincial and territorial energy and mines ministers held each fall. The federal government’s pre-budget process also starts in late summer, launched with a submission deadline set by the Finance Committee. The key messages reflected in MAC’s ministerial comments, pre-budget views and “Facts & Figures 2009” follow.

The mining industry is important to the economy

The industry, as defined by Natural Resources Canada, contributes $40 billion to Canada’s GDP, employs 350,000 people, pays approximately $13.5 billion in taxes and royalties, contributes 19 per cent of Canadian exports and generates business for 3,140 supplier companies. It creates value in urban, rural and remote regions and its products are fundamental to modern life and to the emergence of clean energy technologies.

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Mining as a Core Supplier to the Global Clean Energy Revolution – by Paul Stothart

Paul Stothart is vice-president, economic affairs of the Mining Association of Canada. He is responsible for advancing the industry’s interests regarding federal tax, trade, investment, transport and energy issues. www.mining.ca This column was originally published January, 2009.

Few subjects are receiving as much attention in the daily media as that of our societal need to move towards a clean energy economy. This theme was fundamental to the platforms of all the Canadian federal parties in the recent election — each featuring an array of programs supporting this transition.

In the United States, the platform of President-elect Obama talks extensively of hybrid vehicles, electricity from renewable sources, low carbon standards and the ultimate objective of eliminating oil imports from the Middle East and Venezuela within a decade. Republicans in Washington talk of nuclear power, carbon capture and sequestration and battery development, among other initiatives.

Beyond the political and media coverage, it is evident that few subjects offer comparable transformative potential as changes to the world’s energy infrastructure. Developed economies have been driven for two centuries by the industrial combustion of fossil fuel — indeed there has long existed a direct macro-economic correlation of living standards with per-capita energy consumption.

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Show Us the Money: Canada’s Federal and Provincial Outlooks to Mining – by Marilyn Scales

Marilyn Scales is a field editor for the Canadian Mining Journal, Canada’s first mining publication. She is one of Canada’s most senior mining commentators.

“Money” was the word on the industry’s lips last week as the federal, British Columbia and Ontario governments brought outlined their spending plans for the future. A mining-friendly government helps keep our industry healthy, so let’s take a look at what we can look forward to.

First out of the gate on March 2 was the Throne Speech from Ottawa. In it the federal government promised to develop a clearer process for project approval and a commitment to both Northern development and Aboriginal Canadians.

The speech was lauded by Mining Association of Canada (MAC) president Gordon Peeling, who said, “These issues in today’s Speech from the Throne will enhance the contribution that the mining industry can make to all Canadians by improving the investment climate, bringing efficiency and clarity to our regulatory processes and strengthening our skilled workforce.”

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Ontario Throne Speech Supports Mining’s Role in Province’s Future

This article was provided by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

Mining was given top billing as a builder of Ontario’s future prosperity in the throne speech opening the new session of the provincial legislature yesterday.  Ontario Mining Association President Chris Hodgson attended the throne speech as an invited guest of Premier Dalton McGuinty.  “It is positive to see mining recognized in this important address as a contributor to solving Ontario’s economic challenges,” said Mr. Hodgson.   

In introducing the launch of the five year “Open Ontario Plan” for economic growth and development, the speech, delivered by Lieutenant Governor David Onley, recognized the important role of mining.  “Your government will ensure the North benefits from its Open Ontario Plan,” he said. 

“In 2008, Northern Ontario became home to our first diamond mine.  Your government will build on that success – particularly in the region know as the Ring of Fire.  It is said to contain one of the largest chromite deposits in the world – a key ingredient in stainless steel.”

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Why We Need to Defend our Canadian Mining Industry against Bill C-300 – by David Clarry

David Clarry is a management consultant focused on project development, project financing and business improvement in the mining, energy, and cleantech sectors.  His career has included 19 years with the prominent Canadian engineering and consulting firm Hatch Ltd., as a Director in the management consulting and environmental practices.  Prior to Hatch David worked for DuPont and General Electric. His expertise includes general business management and project management.

David’s projects have spanned North and South America, Asia, Australia, Europe, the former Soviet Union, and Africa. He brings particular strength in building project teams that integrate technical, environmental, management and financial perspectives.  He has led projects for mining and metals companies, equipment manufacturers, utilities, governments, and financial institutions. 

Why you need to read this?

Bill C-300, the “Corporate Accountability of Mining, Oil and Gas Corporations in Developing Countries Act”, was introduced as a Private Member’s bill in February 2009 (initially solely to prompt the government to respond to the CSR Roundtable process).  While the objective of improving CSR performance is laudable, this bill, written with no consultation with the mining industry,  in fact will likely work counter to that objective.  There are fundamental flaws in the bill, and its main proponents seem more interested in attacking Canadian mining companies than in improving CSR performance. 

In the words of the petition being circulated by the sponsor of the bill “the alleged abuses of human rights and the degradation of the environment by Canadian mining companies is a violation of the principles of fundamental justice …”.  This bill ignores the leadership of the Canadian mining industry in CSR.

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