The following letter tot he editor was submitted Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Michael Macnamara:
Greater Sudbury has the opportunity to capitalize on 120 years of mining leadership and success and to ensure a prosperous 150-plus years of future with its invitation to Noront Resources to build its Ferrochrome Production Facility (FPF) in our community.
Our city is already recognized as the largest integrated mining complex in the world, and is host to a mining, and mining supply and services sector employing more than 17,000 people. We are also home to three post-secondary institutions that will ensure our young people have the skills required as part of the construction and operation of the FPF.
As a community, resource-based industries are a cornerstone of our prosperity, and we understand and embrace the value created by mining and mineral processing.
We acknowledge the leadership demonstrated by Mayor Brian Bigger and Chief Roque of the Wahnapitae First Nation, who recently travelled to Tornio, Finland, to observe first-hand the state-of-the-art technology in use by the Outokumpu FPF. They made this journey because they recognize the unique opportunity that an FPF presents to Sudbury. The Sudbury delegation also met with municipal, public health, and economic development representatives to gain a better understanding of best practices when dealing with an FPF.
The Outokumpu FPF is the same world-class closed furnace technology that Noront is proposing to use. This facility has a 50-year record of excellence in environmental safety and sustainability.
The city’s proposed site for the FPF, the former Inco Coniston Smelter, is strategically located and well-suited to accommodate Noront’s needs. Local residents can be assured that should Greater Sudbury be chosen as the successful Northern Ontario location, Noront will conduct a comprehensive series of impact assessments on the selected site that meet rigorous provincial standards for the environment, traffic, and public well-being.
Greater Sudbury is one of four Northern Ontario cities vying to host the FPF, each with their own assets, and each competing for the significant economic spin off that will follow. Generating an estimated 350 permanent jobs, 150 indirect jobs, and about $1 billion in initial investment, Noront’s FPF presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity for Greater Sudbury. These investments are rare opportunities and our political leadership, business community, and residents should be informed of the facts and champion this unique opportunity.
As the “Voice of Business,” the Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce is a strong advocate for locating Noront’s Ferrochrome Production Facility in our community. We know this facility can play an important role for our city’s continued economic prosperity and will reinforce our position as a global leader in mining and the mining supply and services cluster. In our view this is an opportunity we cannot afford to miss.
Chair of the board, Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce