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July 25, 2007, No. 45

Geoscientists urged to sign petition on mobility

The association, through its Geoscience Committee, is encouraging geoscientists to sign a petition in favour of full mobility for geoscientists in Canada. The PDAC interprets ‘full mobility’ as a system in which a geoscientist who is registered in a Canadian jurisdiction, held accountable to a common code of ethics and subject to a disciplinary body following a common set of standards, would have the right to work in another Canadian jurisdiction without further application or notice. There is growing support from the geoscience community for full mobility. The results of the petition, which is in English and French, will be used, along with other PDAC work in this area, to persuade ministers of labour and government decision-makers that action needs to be taken towards this. The petition is here.

PDAC responds to corporate social responsibility (CSR) report

Earlier this year, the report of the National Roundtables on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and the Canadian Extractive Industry in Developing Countries was released. Click here for the process leading up the report’s publication and a link to the actual report (in English and French). The PDAC has now submitted a formal response to the report, prior to its recommendations going forward to Parliament. The response points out that most Canadian companies involved in mineral exploration and development have some form of CSR practice in place. However, the clarification of expectations, guidance instruments and good practice tools recommended in the report will enable them to perform at an internationally acceptable level. The PDAC also states that voluntary initiatives are the most effective mechanisms for advancing CSR objectives and that the application of legal instruments by one country to another is very difficult. Legal instruments should be left to those cases where it is clear that people are intent on breaking the law. A summary of the PDAC’s response is here and the full response is here.

Fonds Restorr Action Nunavik – an update

In the April e-newsletter, we told you about a new program  to clean up abandoned exploration sites in the Nunavik region of Quebec. Since its establishment, Fonds Restor-Action Nunavik has raised $750,000, including an annual donation of $5,000 from the PDAC for the next five years. This article, published last month in Nunatsiaq News, outlines the progress that has been made to date in raising funds for the program and also the clean-up work being undertaken this year. PDAC director André Gaumond is leading this initiative and will be pleased to receive comments or questions about it from members. His email address is [email protected].


Exploration 07 – Sept. 9-12 – Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto

The Exploration 07 conference will be held at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto, from Sunday, September 9 to Wednesday, September 12.  Early bird registration fees ($100 saving) are in effect until July 31. This is the fifth of this decennial conference which focuses on advances in exploration technology over the previous decade. This year’s event will feature an extensive set of oral presentations, poster papers and workshops. A highlight will be a 3D theatre in which delegates will be able to see how state-of-the-art visualization and data modeling can be applied to exploration. Click here for registration form. For more details about the conference, click here.

Asia Pacific Forum on Mining & Minerals – Sept. 30-Oct. 3 - Hyatt Regency Vancouver

This international forum is being organized by the Mining Association of British Columbia with the support of the British Columbia government to increase trade, investment and collaboration in the mining and minerals sector among British Columbia, Canada and countries around the Pacific Rim. Three major themes – trade and investment; emerging standards and best practices; and finance and risk – will be explored through plenary and concurrent sessions during the two and a half day program. The forum will be of interest to senior representatives from industry, government, the investment community, non-governmental organizations, and other businesses in the mining and minerals value chain. Early registration fees are in effect until July 31. Registration form is here, and the forum website is here.

Mining women walk to support breast cancer research

Thanks to the many individual and corporate supporters of the Women in Mining team which is raising funds for its participation in the 60 kilometre Weekend to End Breast Cancer walk on September 8 and 9. The team’s goal is to raise $200,000 in donations for the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto to fund research into the prevention and treatment of breast cancer. As well as its ambulatory efforts, the team is working to give the mining industry a major profile in the media by making the mining team the top fundraiser of this year’s event. The eight women walking are preparing to deliver the message that mining is important to the livelihoods of Canadians, including those in urban centres.  At the time of writing, the team was in 5th place in a large field of fundraisers. If you haven’t yet made a donation, please consider making one. Donations for the team can be made online through Jane Werniuk’s page. Past president Ed Thompson has put together a note on the advantages of donating shares, particularly flow-through shares. Click here for more details.

CIM Barlow Memorial Medal winner

Congratulations to past president Peter Dimmell on winning this year’s CIM Barlow Memorial Medal, which is presented for the best paper on economic geology published by the institute. Peter and his co-author Jeff A. Morgan won the award for their paper, The Aubrey Pegmatite: Exploration for highly evolved lithium-cesium-tantalum pegmatites in northern Ontario.

Canada-India foreign investment protection agreement

Canada and India have agreed upon a foreign investment protection agreement ((FIPA) that aims to improve the predictability of the legal framework governing two-way investment.  The Canada-India agreement will require that host governments protect foreign investments against expropriation, treat foreign investors in a non-discriminatory manner, allow the repatriation of profits, and allow access to international investment arbitration and laws, among other measures.  Click here for more information.