As Ontario politicians begin jockeying for power in preparation for the June 2022 election, it would seem that they all agree that the magic bullet for countering the calamitous effects of climate change is through the production and private purchasing of electric vehicles (EV). While Ford announced last week that Ontario would become a major manufacturing hub for vehicles, his Liberal opponent, Steven Del Duca, announced a subsidy program for EV infrastructure and incentives to individuals for buying or leasing the vehicles; and the NDP and Green Party both released environmental platforms featuring EV promises.

On November 23, Neskantaga First Nation, one of the communities located in the Northern Ontario region where the minerals to manufacture electric vehicles are located, launched a legal challenge in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. The legal action is against the Ontario government for its failure to meaningfully consult communities on an access road that will run through their territory, and aims to push the province to establish ‘ground rules’ for consulting Indigenous communities in the midst of crises – such as the current global pandemic and ongoing boiled water advisories – that have made it impossible for communities to come together, according to their traditions and protocols, to discuss major infrastructure projects on their territories.

Despite these challenges, and persistent calls from Indigenous communities in the region to stall the consultation process, Ontario moved forward, in October, with the next stage in the road development by approving the terms of reference for environmental assessments.

Meanwhile, the ongoing bidding war between two mega mining companies vying to take over Noront continues. BHP Lonsdale Investments, a wholly owned subsidiary of Australian mining giant BHP, is in discussions with Wyloo Metals, who owns 37% of Noront. While those discussions continue, BHP has extended its purchase offer by two weeks, until December 14.

November 25, 2021 (CBC):

Neskantaga First Nation taking Ontario to court over ‘inadequate’ consultation on Ring of Fire

Province has ‘no tools in the toolbox for dealing with Indigenous communities in crisis,’ lawyer says

“Neskantaga First Nation is taking Ontario to court looking for “ground rules” on how the province should consult and accommodate Indigenous communities that are in a state of crisis.

The remote Oji-Cree First Nation, located about 430 kilometres north of Thunder Bay, has been under a boil-water advisory for 26 years and a state of emergency since 2013, when seven people died by suicide in less than a year. Those issues have been compounded by the pandemic, leaving Neskantaga ill-equipped to engage in what the province has presented as consultation on a project to build a road through its territory to the mineral-rich Ring of Fire, community leaders say.” Read more…

November 25, 2021 (Northern Ontario Business):

Neskantaga First Nation taking province to court over lack of consultation on Ring of Fire mine road

Ojibwe community accuses government of disregarding their consultation protocols on development

“Neskantaga First Nation, a remote Ojibwe community in the James Bay region, is launching a legal challenge against the Ontario government to oppose, what it calls, “reckless mining development in the Ring of Fire.”

The community leadership tweeted the announcement Nov. 25 with additional details on their action provided through the Raven Trust website, an online portal that raises legal funds for Indigenous people to defend their rights and title to their traditional lands.” Read more…

November 24, 2021 (Toronto Star):

BHP extends offer for Noront Resources as talks with Wyloo continue

“BHP Lonsdale Investments Pty Ltd. is extending is takeover offer for Noront Resources Ltd. as it continues talks with a major shareholder in the company regarding support for its proposal.

The wholly owned subsidiary of BHP says it continues to talk with Wyloo Metals Pty Ltd., which had made an offer of its own for Noront, only to be outbid by the global mining giant.” Read more…

November 24, 2021 (Sault Star):

BHP extends purchase offer expiry date for Noront Resources

BHP’s offer to purchase Noront Resources will now expire Dec 14

“BHP Lonsdale, the parent company, announced that it continues to progress discussions with Wyloo Metals regarding Wyloo Metals’ potential support of BHP Western Mining’s C$0.75 per share offer to acquire Noront.

‘To allow more time for those discussions to progress, BHP Western Mining has extended the expiry of its offer to December 14, 2021. There is no assurance that any agreement will be reached between BHP Lonsdale and Wyloo Metals. The earliest time BHP Western Mining will be taking up Noront shares under its offer will be at the new expiry time,” a press release states.'” Read more…

November 24, 2021 (Northern Ontario Business):

BHP continues talks with Wyloo on acquiring Noront’s Ring of Fire assets

Melbourne miner extending bid offer to mid-December

“BHP, the world’s largest mining company, said it needs more time to reach an agreement with rival Wyloo Metals on taking over Noront Resources and its Ring of Fire mineral assets in Ontario’s Far North.

In a news release, BHP said it continues to have discussions with Wyloo Metals, Noront’s largest shareholder at 37 per cent, regarding its potential support of BHP’s C$0.75 per share offer to acquire Noront.” Read more…

November 23, 2021 (CBC):

Ontario Liberals to offer $8K electric vehicle rebate in campaign platform

NDP, Green Party have also pledged EV incentives, Doug Ford’s PCs holding out

“The Ontario Liberals will unveil a campaign pledge on Tuesday to provide an $8,000 incentive for buying or leasing a new electric vehicle should they win the provincial election next June. 

Liberal Leader Steven Del Duca will make the announcement at Evergreen Brick Works in Toronto, along with a campaign promise for a provincial subsidy program to cover 30 per cent of the cost of electric charging stations in parking lots, apartment buildings and workplaces.” Read more…

%d bloggers like this: