National Collaboration

CanmetMINING has been a leader or a participant to many mining and innovation related national collaboration to ensure that the science and technology performed by the laboratories is not done in isolation and that possible synergies are exploited. By doing so, the outcomes of the technologies and processes developed by CanmetMINING can be fully maximised. In addition, many of the projects are done in partnerships with other stakeholders; CanmetMINING has collaborated with over 200 partners. Below is a selection of a few key national collaborations that CanmetMINING participates to.

Deep Mining Research Consortium (DMRC)

The DMRC (www.deepminingresearch.org) currently under the Secretariat of CAMIRO Mining (http://www.camiro.org/camiro-mining-division) was initiated in the early 2000s to solve problems related to mining at depth in Canada. As initiator and one of the founding members, CanmetMINING has been very active in delivering the initial pilot projects and leading and delivering in several others. These include the use of diesel equipment at great depths, the use of Gelfill in underground mine backfill, heat stress mitigation strategies, in-situ stress evaluation, dynamic ground support, and thin spray-on liner formulations and applications. Partners in this research consortium also include Agnico Eagle, Barrick Gold, KGHM International, Rio Tinto, Vale and Xstrata.

National Orphaned/Abandoned Mines Initiative (NOAMI)

Remediation of orphaned and abandoned mine sites across Canada has received increased national attention over the past decade. With the creation of NOAMI in 2002, Canadian Mines Ministers signalled their commitment to address this serious environmental issue. NOAMI is a co-operative Canadian program guided by an advisory committee consisting of the mining industry, federal / provincial / territorial governments, environmental organizations and First Nations. The advisory committee assesses key issues and put forward recommendations and collaborative approaches for remediation of mines across Canada.

NOAMI’s activities are jointly funded by the government partners and mining organizations, and is administered by the Secretariat at CanmetMINING.

NOAMI Task Groups undertake in-depth analyses on key issues related to orphaned and abandoned mines, including:

  • Creating a National Inventory
  • Community Involvement
  • Legislative Barriers to Collaboration
  • Funding Approaches
  • Jurisdictional Legislative Reviews
  • Mine Closure and Return of Mining Lands

NOAMI activities and publications are available on the NOAMI web site (www.abandoned-mines.org).

Mine Environment Neutral Drainage (MEND) Program

Acidic drainage has been long recognized as the largest environmental liability facing the Canadian mining industry and to a lesser extent the public through abandoned mines. Formed in 1989, the Mine Environment Neutral Drainage (MEND) Program was the first international initiative to develop scientifically-based technologies to reduce the effect of acidic drainage. This multi-stakeholder consortium has partners from industry, government and environment organizations. The MEND collaborative research program has reduced the liability by several hundreds of million dollars and established Canada as the recognized leader in research and development on acidic drainage for metal mines.

MEND’s activities are jointly funded by the federal government and the mining industry through The Mining Association of Canada, and are administered by the Secretariat at CanmetMINING.

An integral part of MEND is technology transfer - the dissemination of information on developed technologies to the partners and the public. This information can be found at the web site www.mend-nedem.org.

Canada Mining Innovation Council

The Canada Mining Innovation Council (CMIC) is a partnership of the mining industry, the mining research community and governments, with a focus on defining and promoting the research needed by Canada's mining sector. The Council's objective is to provide the sector with the technology and methodology it will need in future to remain competitive and economically viable, while also meeting social expectations for environmental performance and safety.

CMIC has R&D initiatives in Exploration, Mining Extraction, Processing, Energy, Tailings Management and Environmental Stewardship. It is also actively involved in the field of the Highly Qualified People.

CMIC has endorsed the GMI under its Environmental Stewardship Initiative. The multi-stakeholder GMI Advisory Committee is co-chaired by NRCan and CMIC.

Additional information on CMIC can be found on their website: http://www.cmic-ccim.org/project-portfolios/energy/

Provincial / Territorial Chief Inspectors

CanmetMINING enjoys a privileged relationship with provincial and territorial mining regulators. Every year CanmentMINING representatives meet for an entire day with the Chief Inspectors of Mines from every province and territory to discuss emerging issues, challenges and areas of R&D that can help promote productivity, sustainability and health and safety in mining and uniformity in regulation across Canada. This is an opportunity to brief the Chiefs on the latest developments in research, development and innovation at CanmetMINING and as well for the Chiefs to discuss common challenges related to regulatory compliance where CanmetMINING can have a positive input or offer solutions.

In recent years popular topics of interest have included deep mining issues, hoisting, diesel particulate matter, standards upgrades (Canadian Standards Association), heat stress mitigation, ground control, ventilation, the Green Mining Initiative and a host of safety issues. The Chiefs have a public web site where the provincial mining regulations can be consulted and some material related to the yearly meetings can be viewed: www.securmine.net.

Canadian Mineral Processors (CMP)

Canadian Mineral Processors (CMP) (cmpsoc.ca) is a technical society with the purpose to provide an open and effective forum for mineral processing operators across Canada and throughout the world to meet, network and exchange technical information. CMP accomplishes this by offering one national conference each year plus a number of regional meetings across the country to which all those involved in the mineral processing industry are invited and welcome. The CMP is organized across the country into regions with a representative from each region sitting on the Board of Directors. The CMP national secretariat is managed out of CanmetMINING.

CMP aspires to become the world’s premier mineral processing organization by fostering innovation but remaining practical and relevant, and by actively encouraging all those who contribute to the industry. CMP commits to serve and promote the industry by encouraging all participants to develop and share new knowledge and good practices, cultivate and maintain core values

Green Mines Green Energy

Mining companies continue to search for ways to rehabilitate mine wastes, and have expressed interest in using organic waste materials. At the same time, municipalities and forest-related industries are searching for long-term, economical and value-added disposal strategies for organic wastes. The “Green Mines-Green Energy” project is exploring ways to meet both these needs, and to address regulatory hurdles. The GMGE project, led by CanmetMINING, uses organic wastes such as municipal compost and forestry biosolids - materials that may typically go to landfill, to reclaim mining lands and grow energy crops. It is estimated that oilseed production on mine tailings could generate approximately 3,600 litres per hectare or nearly 5 million litres per year if just 1,300 of the more than 2,500 hectares of tailings in the Sudbury area are converted to agricultural land.

Partners include Vale, Xstrata, Goldcorp, MIRACO, Laurentian University, City of Greater Sudbury, Highland Valley Copper, Barrick Gold, BHP Billiton, Domtar Inc, St. Marys Paper, Abitibi Consolidated, Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Federation of Canadian Municipalities (Green Municipal Fund).