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May 30, 2007, No. 44

Frank and Joe Grieco

Brothers Frank and Joe Grieco, the two principals of P.R. Engineering, were killed in an airplane crash on May 17. Frank ran the marketing arm of the company and was well known to the mining community. In a letter of condolence to Frank’s widow, Linda, PDAC president Patricia Dillon states that “Frank’s love of life, friendliness, infectious good humour, and hard work for the mining community made him one of the most popular people in our industry, and his death leaves a gaping hole that will never be filled.”

Advocacy on Parliament Hill focuses on land access and aboriginal affairs

A group of PDAC representatives is meeting this week with MPs and government officials to talk about the importance of land access for mineral exploration and the need for the Canadian government to resolve longstanding aboriginal land claims. First vice-president Jon Baird and directors Don Bubar, Barbara Hendrickson, Richard Moore, Ralph Newson, Glenn Nolan, and Keith Spence are participating, along with PDAC staff members MaryAnn Mihychuk and Kim MacDonald. A briefing note for these meetings is available here. For more information, contact us.

Sustainable development reporting in the mining industry

A recent study conducted by Deloitte analyzed current reporting practices of 36 mining companies in the area of sustainable development (SD) or corporate responsibility. The results are summarized in this 12-page document entitled A mine of information. The report points out that many companies have taken large strides to manage and report on relevant issues and notes that the mining sector is now one of the top SD reporters, producing 800 reports since 1992. The report identifies what the ‘best reporters’ are doing well and provides pointers for those companies “that have not yet fully embraced the SD reporting challenge.”

PDAC’s student-industry workshop received rave reviews from students

Congratulations to Lynda Bloom and Scott Jobin-Bevans, co-chairs of the PDAC’s student affairs committee; Teresa Barrett, membership coordinator; and Naaznin Pastakia, workshop coordinator, for organizing the association’s first student-industry workshop in Sudbury earlier this month. The aim of the workshop was to give university students in earth sciences an opportunity to learn about the many aspects of the mineral exploration industry. By all accounts, the workshop was a great success. At the end of the two-week, all expenses paid event, the 23 students appeared reluctant to go home! Barrick Gold, a major sponsor of the event, brought Stanslaus (William) Mhindi, an exploration geologist at the North Mara mine, Tanzania, to learn about the mineral industry in Canada. Here is a letter from one of the participants, Marc Rinne, with his views about the workshop.

Mineral industry’s future needs for geoscientists: Members’ views sought

The Canadian Federation of Earth Sciences is seeking the mineral sector’s assessment of its future needs for geoscientists and technical support personnel. The resulting data will be used to help build a strong case for further investment in geoscience education at all levels, and encourage educational institutions to consider more closely aligning their training strategies with the needs of the work place. The survey is short and we encourage as many members as possible to respond to it. Deadline for responses is June 30, 2007. Click here for the survey.

Seminar will examine implications of recent Platinex decision

The Ontario Bar Association is organizing an evening seminar on the recent developments surrounding the Platinex decision and its implications for resource companies. The event will be held on Thursday, June 14 at the Marriott Toronto Downtown Eaton Centre (York A and B) beginning at 5.30 p.m. The registration fee, which includes dinner, is $84.80 for members of the CIM and Canadian Bar Association and $106.00 for non-members. Speakers Don Bubar, chair of the PDAC’s aboriginal affairs committee, and Neal Smitheman, counsel for Platinex, will discuss the Platinex decision and will also provide an update on the current state of the law and talk about the Crown's duty to consult in the context of resource exploration and development in Ontario.Click here for full details and registration form.

Fairmont Royal York Hotel offers PDAC members special summer rate

As part of its annual appreciation summer getaway program, the Fairmont Royal York Hotel is offering PDAC members a special summer rate of $139 per night. If you wish to take advantage of this offer, which applies to reservations from June 28 to September 4, please indicate that you are a member of the PDAC. More details here.

Opportunities in Cambodia’s mining sector

The Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) is interested in communicating the opportunities in Cambodia to Canadian companies that may be interested in exploring business development opportunities in Cambodia. Vanak Chhim, Canada’s trade commissioner to Cambodia, has developed this report on current opportunities in the country’s mining sector, including the current outlook and the role of Cambodian officials in granting the appropriate licences and permits. For additional information, contact Jamie Huckabay at DFAIT by telephone, 613 947 8112, or by email, [email protected].

Mining women walk to support breast cancer research

On September 8 and 9, eight women from the mineral industry will join hundreds of other women in a two-day, 60 kilometre Weekend to End Breast Cancer walk. Each walker has committed to raising at least $2,000 in donations which will go to the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto to fund research into the prevention and treatment of breast cancer. The women, Nean Allman, Kate Armstrong, Teresa Barrett, Saley Lawton, MaryAnn Mihychuk, Monica Ospina, Jane Werniuk, and Margaret Werniuk, invite you and your colleagues and employers to donate to this worthy cause. Click here for more details.