first_imgThe province has completed its review of three applications for surface coal exploration and mining in the Sydney coalfield, and its review of three proposals to develop the Donkin subsea coal resource. “We are excited about the economic, environmental and social benefits that can come from these projects,” said Minister of Natural Resources Richard Hurlburt. “Where appropriate, we hope to extract the coal for sale at current market value, which would give Cape Breton a significant economic benefit, a source of employment, and provide more economical resources to users who now have to import it from as far away as South America.” A special lease for coal at the former Prince Mine site at Point Aconi was approved for Pioneer Coal Limited on April 14. The project has been registered for environmental assessment, and is under review by the Department of Environment and Labour. Approval was given on June 2 to issue Coastal Construction and Excavating Limited an exploration licence to explore an area near the Prince Mine Road, Cape Breton Regional Municipality, subject to landowner consent. The licence area is about 25 per cent of the resource block outlined in the original call for proposals. Thomas Brogan and Sons Construction Ltd. was unsuccessful in obtaining mineral rights for the Birch Grove resource block. A fourth application for a lease for surface coal resources in the Broughton coal block is under review. Recommendations of the review committee regarding proposals to develop the Donkin subsea coal resource are under final consideration and a decision is expected in early July. There are an estimated seven- to eight-million tonnes of coal in Cape Breton that could be mined by small surface operations. This could have a market value of between $300 million and $500 million, could generate up to 100 direct jobs and more than 200 indirect jobs. A special exploratory licence permits a company to determine the presence of coal, the quality of the coal and the economic viability of a potential project. It does not allow for development. Mineral leases issued by the Department of Natural Resources provide control of the resource to the successful applicant but provide no permission for operation of a mine. All applicants must successfully complete the environmental assessment and industrial approval process through the Department of Environment and Labour, and receive landowner approval before they can begin mine development. This ensures that any mining operation will protect water courses, water supply, wetlands, and wildlife habitats. The surface coal mining blocks within the Sydney coalfield are currently the subject of a cumulative environmental effects study by the Department of Environmental and Labour. Results are expected by the end of the summer. When extraction of coal is completed, the lease holder is required to restore the site to a condition that is environmentally acceptable and that addresses local interests. A good example of the community benefits from surface mining is in Stellarton, the site of the Pioneer Coal Limited mine, which employs 70 persons. Mining operations are expected to be completed by 2011, and the lease holder and the community have agreed that the site will be reclaimed in a way that will allow the community to meet its land-use planning objectives. The plans include converting the land — which had been severely compromised by historical mining — for use as parkland, sports facilities, and residential and industrial properties.last_img read more

Canadians looking at investing outside of the country in greater numbers by The Canadian Press Posted Feb 24, 2016 2:00 am MDT Last Updated Feb 24, 2016 at 10:40 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email TORONTO – Canadian investors are increasingly looking at putting their money to work outside the country despite the drop in the loonie, a CIBC poll suggests.The survey found that 41 per cent of Canadians investing for retirement in stocks or mutual funds will invest mainly outside of the country.That result is up from 31 per cent in a similar poll last year.The poll conducted in January by Vision Critical found 15 per cent of those surveyed said they planned to add to their U.S. investments, while another 15 per cent were investing in emerging markets.Eleven per cent planned on stocks and mutual funds in developed markets such as Europe.The online poll was done by Vision Critical from Jan. 20 to 22.Much of the Canadian stock market is based in three key sectors — energy, mining and financials. The concentration meant last year that the S&P/TSX composite index suffered due to weakness in oil and other commodity prices.“While it’s natural for investors to have a ‘home bias’ by overweighting your portfolio to domestic stocks, taking a Canada-only approach can hurt returns,” says Luc de la Durantaye, managing director, asset allocation and currency management, CIBC Asset Management.“Canada accounts for only about three per cent of the world’s market capitalization, so diversifying geographically can strengthen your portfolio for the long-term.”The Canadian dollar has come off highs of recent years to trade at its lowest level against the U.S. dollar in more than a decade earlier this year.And while the drop in the loonie has made buying investments in the U.S. more expensive, it has also given a boost to U.S. stocks in Canadian dollar terms even with the relatively flat year for the S&P 500 in 2015.The CIBC suggested that with the recent volatility on the stock market and the lower loonie, 22 per cent of investors are looking at “alternative asset” classes that include real estate or infrastructure.Another 26 per cent said they wanted to learn more about alternative asset classes, the poll said.The polling industry’s professional body, the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, says online surveys cannot be assigned a margin of error as they are not a random sample and therefore are not necessarily representative of the whole population. read more