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NWO stands to benefit greatly in face of global demand for EV and REE metals

Aug 22, 2022

The race is on and Northwestern Ontario is in the running. As consumers and businesses around the globe continue to grapple with seemingly runaway gas prices, they’ll have to curb their appetite for electric vehicles while explorationists scour the planet for enough metals and minerals to meet production requirements.


There is no green economy without mining


By Kevin Vincent
The good news is that Northwestern Ontario stands to benefit from the increasing pressure on politicians to address climate change and their number one goal is electric vehicles.
And whether it is palladium, copper, nickel, lithium or a host of other metals, the exploration game is afoot and it is being played out in the northwest of Ontario.
The provincial government has put some meat on a plan unveiled a year ago to intensify the hunt for metals used in the manufacture of batteries, smartphones, solar panels and other so-called green economy products.
At a news conference held at Impala Canada’s Lac Des Iles palladium mine north of Thunder Bay in March 2022, Premier Doug Ford announced $24 million over three years so exploration companies can ramp up searches for commodities listed under the government’s critical minerals strategy.
“Doing so has never been more important as we secure game-changing investments in our auto sector to build the electric vehicles and batteries of the future,” Ford said in a news release.
Details about how exploration companies can apply for the funds weren’t immediately available.
The province also announced an additional $5 million over two years for a new critical minerals innovation fund for research into mining and milling methods in Northern Ontario.
According to a provincial backgrounder, about $3.5 billion worth of metals like nickel, cobalt, lithium and platinum-group metals were mined in the province in 2020.
Impala Canada president Tim Hill noted in that release that palladium is a key ingredient in the manufacture of catalytic converters, which are used to reduce pollution in exhaust from gas-powered cars and trucks.
Impala Canada president Tim Hill stated that there was no better place than our Lac Des Iles Mine to showcase the mineral importance and potential to Northwestern Ontario. During the news conference Hill also went on to talk about how the mine has been in production for over 28 years and is one of only two known palladium deposits in North America. Today the Lac Des Iles Mine is one of the safest, lowest cost and largest underground mines. The mine delivers 30% of the palladium produced in Canada.
Hill stated, “access to critical minerals is a priority in today’s world and investors and stakeholders are standing up and increasingly demanding ethical sourcing as well as socially and environmentally mining and that is what we deliver here at Lac Des Iles and across Ontario. And I am proud to say that this team is made up of some of the most talented, resilient, and committed people in our industry.”


Impala picture
Pic Vimeo VID: President of Impala Canada, Tim Hill right leads a tour of the Lac Des Iles Mine with Premier Doug Ford, past Minster of Mines Greg Rickford, and  Minister of  Economic Development, Victor Fedeli


Bank of America analysts warned of shortage of many critical elements


And it’s not just electric vehicles fueling the search for elements like cobalt, nickel and lithium – the appetite for solar panels and wind turbines is growing exponentially as well. In a recent note to investors, Bank of America analysts warned of a shortage of many critical elements, including rare earth metals that are harder to produce, just as demand is starting to soar.

Companies like Avalon Advanced Materials, Clean Air Metals, Frontier Lithium, Generation Mining, Green Technology Metals, Impala Canada, Copper Lake Resources and Palladium One Mining are actively involved in this high stakes competition.


Here’s a snapshot of the companies active in northwestern Ontario.


Impala Canada Ltd. was formed in December of 2019 when North American Palladium was acquired by Impala Platinum Holdings Limited, an integrated global platinum group metal (PGM) producer. Implats was attracted by the company’s focus on palladium, its reliable growth potential, its highly engaged team and the revenue-generating potential of its Lac des Iles Mine. The Lac des Iles Mine, a palladium operation located in a low-risk jurisdiction northwest of Thunder Bay, employs over 700 employees and features a unique, world-class ore body and modern infrastructure, including both an underground mine and surface operations. The mine is also noted for its advanced underground technologies and significant exploration portfolio.
Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. is a Canadian mineral development company specializing in sustainably- produced materials for clean technology. Avalon is currently focusing on developing its Separation Rapids Lithium Project near Kenora.
Clean Air Metals’ flagship asset is the 100% owned, high grade Thunder Bay North Project, a platinum, palladium, copper, nickel project located near the City of Thunder Bay and the Lac des Iles Mine owned by Impala.
Frontier Lithium’s PAK Lithium Project contains North America’s highest grade lithium resource that is top three in size on the continent and is considered premium quality globally as a result of its rare low-iron spodumene.
Generation Mining is focused on the development of the Marathon Project, a large platinum group metal mineral deposit in Northwestern Ontario. The company released the results of the Feasibility Study in March of last year. The Marathon property covers a land package of approximately 22,000 hectares, or 220 square kilometres. Gen Mining owns a 100% interest in the Marathon Project.
Green Technology Metals has increased its base of properties east of Red Lake from 9,467 hectares to 40,797 hectares through execution of multiple option agreements and tenement pegging activities. The company currently holds an 80% interest in the Ontario Lithium Projects (Seymour, Root and Wisa) under a joint venture with Ardiden Limited.
Copper Lake Resources holds a 70.45% interest in the Marshall Lake VMS Copper Zinc Silver Project, a year-round road accessible VMS Copper, Gold, Zinc and Silver project (Volcanogenic Massive Sulphide) 252 kilometres north of Thunder Bay. In addition, Copper Lake holds a 69.79% interest in the Norton Lake Nickel, Copper, Cobalt and Palladium project strategically located close to the access route of the Ring of Fire discoveries further north.
Palladium One Mining Inc. is focused on discovering environmentally and socially conscious metals for green transportation. A Canadian mineral exploration and development company, PDM’s northwestern Ontario project is the 2020 Discovery of the Year Award winning Tyko Project, a high-grade sulphide, copper-nickel project near White River.

According to Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, nickel is the new gold. It is no surprise that Musk feels this way. With lithium-Ion batteries being essential to the Electric Vehicle industry, and nickel the primary component of the batteries as a whole, nickel is expected by many in EV manufacturing to be in very high demand.







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