Technical Program / Abstracts

Listed below by session

Business and Benefits Session

Opening Session

Manitoba Geoscience, Exploration and Mining Highlights

Northern Opportunities

Manitoba Exploration and Development Highlights

Manitoba Geoscience Collaborations

Short Course: Geology and Mineral Potential of Manitoba’s Premier Mineral Belts: Rice Lake/Bird River Belt

Other 2014 links

d2014 Speakers

 

Business and Benefits Session

Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012 (CEAA 2012) – Modernizing the Regulatory Process
S. Carriere (Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency)

On July 6, 2012 the new Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012 (CEAA 2012) came into force as part of the Government of Canada’s Responsible Resource Development initiative to strengthen and modernize the federal environmental assessment process.  The presentation will cover the federal environmental assessment process including the integration of aboriginal consultation into the regulatory process.  Participants should leave with an understanding of how to engage the CEAA 2012 process and what to expect in terms of federal environmental assessments for major resource projects.

No video available

 

Consultation:  Big “c” and Little “c”
J. Stefaniuk and A. Fenske (Thompson Dorfman Sweatman)

What is the role of mining companies in Aboriginal consultation? Why are mining companies negotiating memorandums of understanding (MOUs) and impact benefit or accommodation agreements (IBAs)? Consultation activities and the results of these activities are critical to proponents when it comes to the ultimate success of a project, particularly where project assessment and licencing is concerned. This presentation will provide an opportunity to explore in detail Aboriginal consultation issues in Manitoba and aims to provide participants with practical advice on how to navigate the regulatory and permitting regimes in Manitoba, as well as how best to approach Aboriginal consultation requirements.  This will include: Crown obligations vs. developer/proponent obligations; Aboriginal consultation and information requirements for project assessments and permitting; Strategies for addressing Aboriginal consultation and information requirements; and techniques for presenting consultation activities and outcomes in a manner that facilitates Crown decision-making.

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Using Western Science and Traditional Knowledge for Mining Environmental Assessments in Nunavut
C. De La Mare (Golder Associates Limited), R. Vanengen and S. Robert (Agnico Eagle Mines Limited)

The Nunavut Impact Review Board (NIRB) was established to review the environmental assessment of proposed projects under Part 5, Article 6 of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement. NIRB reviews the environmental and socio-economic impacts of projects on the environment and communities and recommends whether a project should proceed or not, and under what conditions. Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd (AEM) is proposing to build a new gold mine, the Meliadine Gold Mine, north of Rankin Inlet. As part of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for this project, anticipated effects from the project to barren ground caribou were assessed. This assessment consisted of examining existing Inuit Traditional Knowledge (Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit or IQ), gathering additional IQ where needed, and incorporating western science from satellite collar information, population census surveys, habitat assessment and habitat modelling. Information from both sources was often found to be collaborative, and in some cases complementary. In particular, the main components of the caribou effects assessment examined caribou movement information in and around the Project using IQ, caribou survey data and archaeological artifacts. This information was synthesized and used to do determine the potential for environmental effects to caribou as result of the Meliadine Project development.

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Vale: Process Operator in Training (POinT) Program
R. Land (Vale)

In 2011, Vale's Manitoba Operations developed and implemented the Northern Employment Strategy in order to "grow our own" and increase local and regional hiring. Within two years, 100% of process operator and labourer hiring was happening from within the region and the trend continues. As part of the strategy, the Process Operator in Training (POinT) program was developed as a paid, 7-week, pre-employment program in partnership Aboriginal stakeholders and communities, the Provincial government, and education and employment partners. The result has been that the employment "pipeline" has a healthy flow, and retention rates have increased significantly.

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Opening Session


Welcoming Remarks
Minister Dave Chomiak, Manitoba Mineral Resources

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No Quick Fix: Sustaining Mineral Exploration and Mineral Production in Canada
R. Thomas (Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC))

As the national voice of the Canadian mineral exploration and development industry, the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada supports its members to responsibly find and produce the minerals and metals that are essential to modern life.  Part of our mandate is to ensure Canada remains the best place in the world to explore.  In recent years, Canada has slipped from first to second place in terms of capturing the largest percentage of global exploration budgets.  This presentation will examine why that has happened, and what factors are affecting Canada’s competitiveness as a destination for mineral investment. It will also outline how PDAC is responding to these challenges.

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Report on the Mining Advisory Council
Chief Ron Evans (Norway House Cree Nation)

No abstract available

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Returning to Top 10
Lovro Paulic (Mining Association of Manitoba Inc.)

No abstract available

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Manitoba Geoscience, Exploration and Mining Highlights

Bedrock Geology of Northern Indian Lake, Manitoba
T. Martins and P.D. Kremer (Manitoba Geological Survey)

During this presentation I will go over the results of geological mapping conducted along the lower Churchill River around Northern Indian Lake in July of 2014. The area is underlain by Paleoproterozoic rocks comprising parts of the Trans Hudson orogen, including metasedimentary and metavolcanic rocks of Southern Indian domain and plutonic rocks comprising part of the Chipewyan domain. Highly deformed metavolcanic and metasedimentary rocks of the Southern Indian domain, which are preserved as large screens and xenoliths within several phases of younger felsic plutonic rocks, are tentatively correlated to continental arc volcanic rocks assigned to the Partridge Breast Lake assemblage. The intrusive contact which marks the boundary between the Southern Indian and Chipewyan domains is exposed at Northern Indian Lake. The contact zone is marked by a narrow, localized increase in strain, interpreted as a result of forceful intrusion of the Chipewyan/Wathaman batholith into the Southern Indian domain. Previous studies have identified fault-bounded remnants of latest Archean to earliest Paleoproterozoic crust, which forms an important detrital and inherited component in the northeastern Southern Indian domain. Samples collected during this study for U-Pb geochronological and Sm-Nd isotopic analyses will attempt to further constrain the extent of crustal contamination near the southern margin of the Chipewyan domain to better understand the crustal architecture underlying this portion of the THO.

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Bedrock Geology, Whole-Rock Geochemistry and Mineral Potential of the West Reed Lake Area
S. Gagné and S. Anderson (Manitoba Geological Survey)

This presentation will discuss new data collected during a six-week geological mapping program conducted in the area immediately west of Reed Lake in June-July 2014. This represents the second field season of a multi-year project focusing on the Reed Lake region. The Reed Lake area represents a critical bridge between two main segment of the Flin Flon belt, as it lies at the boundary between the Amisk collage to the west and the Snow Lake segment to the east. The Reed Lake area also includes the Fourmile Island assemblage, a bimodal succession of arc-affinity volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks that hosts several significant VMS deposits, including the currently producing Reed Lake Cu-Zn deposit. The 2014 mapping area is underlain by two south-trending packages of bimodal volcanic and volcaniclastic rocks that flank the Reed Lake mafic-ultramafic complex and are intruded by the West Reed pluton. The eastern volcanic package is geochemically similar to volcanic-arc rocks of the Fourmile Island assemblage and can be traced continuously southward from the past-producing Dickstone deposit to Reed Lake. The western package is geochemically distinct from the eastern package but likewise characterized by arc signatures typical of VMS-hosting volcanic sequences throughout the Flin Flon belt. The western package is intruded to the west by tonalite–granodiorite of the Gants Lake batholith whereas the eastern package is intruded by the ‘type’ Josland Lake sill indicating that both packages are part of the early ‘juvenile arc’ assemblage.

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Manitoba Mineral Exploration and Development Trends 2014
C.J. Beaumont-Smith (Manitoba Minerals Policy and Business Development)

Persistent low commodity prices and challenging equity markets have resulted in revised exploration and development decisions affecting the mineral exploration and mining sectors in Manitoba. In spite of this, mineral exploration and development projects continue to advance. The presentation will highlight local exploration trends, provide an overview of current exploration projects, and update the status of advanced exploration and development projects in Manitoba.

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Mapping Progress in the Pikwitonei Granulite Domain: Tectonic and Economic Implications
C.G. Couëslan (Manitoba Geological Survey)

Mapping was conducted during the summers of 2012–2014 on Sipiwesk, Cauchon, Partridge Crop, and Armstrong lakes as part of an ongoing program to map portions of the Pikwitonei Granulite Domain with a focus on protolith interpretation. Metavolcanic and metasedimentary rocks, including exhalative deposits and hydrothermally altered volcanic rocks, were identified in all four map areas. This presentation will outline the geology of the study areas and investigate the geochemical affinity of the metavolcanic rocks through the use of trace-element geochemistry. Samarium-Neodymium and U-Pb isotopes will be used to compare the granulites with adjacent greenstone belts of the Superior Province and rocks in the Thompson Nickel Belt. The tectonic evolution will be discussed along with economic considerations for the region.

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Monument Bay Gold – Tungsten Project
G. Kuntz (Mega Precious Metals Inc.)

Mega is defining Canada’s newest Gold-Tungsten district in NE, Manitoba at its flagship property the Monument Bay Project.  In October 2014 Mega published a 43-101 update of the resources and the deposit currently hosts 2.4 Million Measured and Indicated Equivalent Ounces at 1.4 g/t gold and Inferred Resources of 1.0 Million Equivalent Ounces at 1.0 g/t gold. There is over 140 km of gold tungsten bearing structures on the property and recent geophysical modelling work has demonstrated the potential for existing parallel structures 4 km south of the existing potential pit outline. All deposits are open for expansion along strike and at depth. In 2014 Mega continued to advance and de-risk the project further by commencing the environmental baseline studies and by announcing that preliminary metallurgical recovery results suggest overall gold recoveries of 90.3% which were achieved using standard conventional milling processes. During the remainder of 2014/15 Mega will complete the Old Core Assay Program (OCAP), diamond drilling, additional gold and tungsten metallurgical tests to further optimize gold and tungsten recoveries, continue environmental baselines studies, commence work on a Preliminary Economic Assessment and work towards a Pre-Feasibility Study.

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New Developments at Lynn Lake – Carlisle Goldfields Ltd.
A. Drost (Carlisle Goldfields Ltd.)

Carlisle Goldfields Limited is TSX-listed (CGJ-TSX) Canadian‐based gold exploration company focused on development of its Lynn Lake gold camp project in Lynn Lake, Manitoba, Canada. Carlisle holds mining rights to over 35,000 hectares in the area and has completed NI 43-101 compliant mineral resource estimates on five (5) deposits within its Lynn Lake Gold Camp, four of which form the basis for the December, 2013 Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA). These include the Farley Lake Mine Deposit, MacLellan Mine Deposit, Burnt Timber Mine Deposit, and Linkwood Deposit. The results of a second optimized PEA (February, 2014) focused on developing a dual open pit mine model for the historical Farley Lake Mine and MacLellan Mine deposits feeding a single new milling complex as an integrated project. The NI 43-101 technical report for the latter includes a post-tax Net Present Value of $257 million and an Internal Rate of Return of 34% using a 5% discount rate and US$1100 gold price on estimated initial capital requirements with contingencies of $180 million. Carlisle’s objective is, together with provincial and municipal government and First Nation stakeholders, to efficiently advance the Lynn Lake gold project through feasibility study, environmental and mine permitting to set the stage for resumption of gold production in the historical Lynn Lake mining camp. The Company will demonstrate this leadership by focusing on fundamentals of mineral resources, geology, engineering and a social license to operate.

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Overview of 2014 Activities of the Manitoba Geological Survey
C. Böhm (Manitoba Geological Survey)

In 2014, the Manitoba Geological Survey (MGS) conducted a broad range of partnered and non-partnered geoscience projects to enhance and update the geoscience knowledge base of the province. Main geoscience priorities included Precambrian mapping projects in the northern Superior province east of Thompson where there is high mineral potential for a variety of commodities; in the exposed and buried portions of the Flin Flon belt where activities were concentrated in the Reed Lake and Lalor mine areas near Snow Lake; in the Northern Indian Lake area where evidence for Archean basement may promote diamond prospectivity; and base- and precious metal studies in the Rice Lake and Bird River belts in southeastern Manitoba. MGS participated in the final year of phase four of the Federal-provincial Targeted Geoscience Initiative (TGI-4), focused on government geoscience in support of deep exploration to ensure the continued viability of mining in established communities. Collaborative research under this initiative is focused on auriferous base-metal systems in the Snow Lake area (Lalor deposit) and magmatic nickel-copper-chromium systems in the Bird River belt (southeast Manitoba). Phanerozoic geoscience priorities included evaluation of the hydrocarbon potential of on-shore sedimentary strata of the Hudson Bay basin in Manitoba through collaboration with the Geological Survey of Canada under phase two of the 2014-2020 Geo-Mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM-2) program. In partnership with Manitoba Hydro and universities MGS advanced studies of shallow gas-bearing Cretaceous formations in southwest Manitoba to assess the potential for shallow shale gas as a future resource for the province. Completion of the digital 3-D model of Phanerozoic stratigraphy in Manitoba south of 55° N contributes vital information to diverse fields of study, ranging from hydrogeology to petroleum potential. And MGS continued to support drift exploration; Quaternary geoscience studies were focused on the Gillam area, in part to assess aggregate resource potential for current and future infrastructure development in the region. In addition to providing geoscience knowledge, the MGS’ programming promotes resource development, wise land management, Aboriginal engagement, and mineral education to the public.

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Producing a Future
R. Winton (Hudbay Minerals Inc.)

Hudbay’s Manitoba Business Unit has been producing a future in Northern Manitoba for nearly 90 years. 2014 wrote a new chapter in the Manitoba story and added a significant international future for Hudbay. September 16, 2014 marked the grand opening ceremonies of our Lalor and Reed mines. This has allowed Hudbay the opportunity to share our future with the town of Snow Lake and our joint venture partner VMS. 2014 also saw Hudbay grow into Arizona with the purchase of the Rosemont asset.  The year is expected to close with the commissioning of the Constancia mine and mill in Peru. Hudbay Manitoba, never one to rest on its past successes will continue producing a future for our stakeholders by exploring, continually improving, and further engaging the communities in which we operate.

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San Gold Mineral Exploration and Mine Development Highlights
M. Michaud (San Gold Corporation)

Underground definition drilling at Rice Lake has recently delineated two new mining trends to the north of the historic San Antonio Mine (SAM) unit, which started producing gold in 1931. Until late last year, the Company believed the two units to be a single unit identified as the Shoreline Basalt unit. An in-depth structural analysis carried out in 2013 to refine the Company’s exploration model then revealed that the lower portion was in fact part of an adjacent, previously unknown mining unit located between the Shoreline Basalt and the SAM unit. This discovery represents a significant advance in the Company’s exploration model and provides a number of additional exploration targets in the Shoreline Basalt and in the new mining unit available for follow-up underground drilling.

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Standing Strong: An Update on Vale’s Manitoba Operations
M. Scott (Vale)

In November 2010 Vale announced that it would transition its Manitoba Operations from a fully-integrated nickel-mining operation to a mining- and milling-only operation by 2015. As a result of this and a downturn in the commodities market, the operations and the community in Thompson entered one of the most challenging periods in recent history. Vale's employees and the community rose to the challenge and the business has emerged stronger than ever with the potential for significant mine capital investment on the horizon, a successfully negotiated 5-year Collective Bargaining Agreement, an extension for operation of its smelter and refinery, and the implementation of the Thompson Economic Diversification Working Group's action plans well underway.

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Northern Opportunities

Callinex Mines Inc.: Exploring for Manitoba’s New VMS Deposit
M. Porterfield (Callinex Mines Inc.)

Callinex Mines Inc. holds two strategic projects, Flin Flon and Pine Bay, within 20 km of Flin Flon, Manitoba. At the Flin Flon project several new targets were identified in 2013 from a VTEM survey that have not been previously tested. Most significantly, the primary target is a 350m x 400m electromagnetic and off-set magnetic anomaly with potential thickness that covers claims of both Callinex and Hudbay. Callinex is evaluating a potential drill program on this target, along with several targets located wholly within its claim boundaries, which may represent a significant new discovery within the Flin Flon area. Nearby to the Flin Flon project, the recently consolidated Pine Bay project covers the northern strike extension of the stratigraphy that hosts the Centennial Mine and hosts four historic resources totaling 1.7 Mt of 2.6% copper equivalent. The project was explored by Placer Dome during the 1990s in search of a 30 Mt VMS deposit, with minimal exploration completed since. The Company is currently compiling and historic data from the various claim blocks to evaluate future drilling programs. At present, several targets exist including a target approximately 720m deep related to a 210m alteration zone including 50 meters of chloritic alteration that has not been followed up on. The Company believes both Flin Flon and Pine Bay projects have potential to host the next mine in the Flin Flon belt.

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Stepping Stones: Building a Path from Liaison to Collaboration
L. Murphy (Manitoba Geological Survey)

Liaison programs and collaborative projects through government initiatives and industry partnerships with First Nation and remote communities develop positive processes to bring people together and help improve respectful and open communications. The MGS community liaison program provides First Nation communities with key geoscientific tools and land-use information necessary to become more involved when mineral-resource opportunities present themselves. All Manitobans can benefit as government and industry work with First Nation communities to develop unique ‘stepping stone’ collaborative paths that strengthen communicative and economic relationships.

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The Northern Manitoba Mining Academy: Update on Activities
R. Penner (Northern Manitoba Mining Academy)

In its second full year of operation, the Northern Manitoba Mining Academy (NMMA) witnessed growth in each of its three key functions, namely, (1) education and training, (2) research, and (3) outreach activities. The Executive Director of the NMMA, Rob Penner, will provide an update on these activities and outline future programming at the NMMA as it continues to work with industries, northern communities, and other educators and researchers.

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Uranium Exploration in Northwestern Manitoba
P. Dasler, K. Schimann (CanAlaska Uranium Ltd.)

Early uranium exploration, north of the community of Lac Brochet followed upon the exploration activity generated by discoveries in the Athabasca basin area during the late 1960’s and-1970’s.  The area had been first surveyed in the 1880’s, and then in more detail in the 1950’s and early 1960’s.  There were airborne magnetic surveys by the Government in the late 1950’s, and, to follow-up on the early uranium exploration, a Federal-provincial airborne radiometric survey in 1976.  All of this historic survey work, indicated that the underlying Wollaston Group rocks held good potential for new uranium discoveries; however, there was no exploration activity following the Three-Mile Island uranium disaster, and the collapse of the uranium market in 1981. In 2005, with the new surge in uranium interest CanAlaska applied for new Mineral Exploration Licences, to follow-up the few boulders which were discovered in 1976 in the last work by  AREVA Corporation in the Wollaston Belt. The 2006 summer  exploration season was  spectacularly successful,  both with the identification of extensive uranium mineralization from a 1800+ lake sediment sampling program, and also from ground prospecting  and boulder tracing.  A detailed airborne magnetics and radiometric survey in July 2006 was processed at the end of the season, and in 2007 prospecting crews followed up on a large number of picked anomalies extending anomalies and finding new uraniferous zones. A need for community consultation placed the project on hold from late 2007 to early 2012.  The consultation framework put in place by the Manitoba Government during this period engaged the Community in further communication with CanAlaska, and in December 2011 the Community and CanAlaska  entered in to a Memorandum of Understanding  regarding communication and cooperation in the exploration process, with agreement for further communication and accommodation following any future feasibility studies.  Detailed geophysical work was re-started on the Maguire Target in March 2012.  The large coincident gravity, and resistivity targets developed in the vicinity of high grade surface boulders, and multi-percent uranium outcrop, provided compelling drill targets, but market conditions did not allow project financing.  Northern Uranium Corp optioned the project in March 2014, and to date has in-filled and extended the gravity survey, and completed an extensive surface and lake radon survey.  This has identified further strong anomalies which are now the focus of drill programs. This review provides the background geophysical and geochemical targeting and character of the mineralization in the Maguire project area, the process of exploration, and provides the features of several other untested targets on the property.

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Manitoba Exploration and Development Highlights

Innovative Strategies to Delivering Shareholder Value at Maverick Gold Project
G. Glenn (Minnova Corp.)

Minnova Corp. has successfully re-structured and positioned the 100% owned Maverick Gold Project to be financed and re-started at a forecast production at a rate of over 40,000 ounces per annum over a 10 year mine life.  The key to our strategy for the planned re-start of the Maverick Gold Project is incorporating INNOVATION.  Technical INNOVATION – SAMSTM a new underground mining method incorporating proven underground equipment and technologies.  Development/Operations INNOVATION – consortium of external contractors engaged to provide selected services for mine, mill, maintenance and site support.  Corporate/Planning INNOVATION – reduced burn rate and utilize consultants to complete important technical programs to de-risk and advance the project.  INNOVATION is in our name and how we think.  We’re disciplined about how we will go about financing and re-starting mining operations with a clear focus on delivering shareholder value.

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Manitoba Nickel Copper Project - Beyond 2014
R. Dunbar (Mustang Minerals Corp.)

Mustang Minerals Corp. (TSXV: MUM) has been exploring and developing in the Province of Manitoba since 2005 when it acquired the mineral rights to the Makwa Nickel Project. Since that time Mustang has drilled off two open pit resources in the Bird River Belt. The Makwa Deposit is a nickel dominant deposit that contains PGM and copper credits. The Mayville Deposit is a copper dominant deposit that has nickel and other credits. Mustang announced the results of a preliminary economic assessment of the project in April 2014. The focus of the presentation will be the future exploration and development plans for the project.

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Victory Nickel and Victory Silica: Creating and Building a New Industry in Manitoba
S. Stokes (Victory Nickel Inc.)

Victory Nickel Inc. has four Canadian sulphide nickel deposits containing significant NI 43-101-compliant nickel resources. The most advanced, Minago near Grand Rapids, Manitoba, also hosts a large frac sand resource. Frac sand is rare, valuable and used extensively as a proppant in oil and gas drilling. To establish a presence in the frac sand market, Victory Nickel created subsidiary Victory Silica focused on establishing a presence in the frac sand industry prior to commencing nickel and frac sand production at Minago. Victory Silica began sales of premium-quality frac sand from its plant near Medicine Hat (the “7P Plant”) in early 2014 by shipping partially-processed sand purchased in Wisconsin to the 7P Plant for final processing and sale. Phase 2, which includes the construction of a sand concentrator and control of frac sand mines in Wisconsin, is expected to reduce costs and assure security of sand supply. In Phase 3, Victory Silica has identified a site in Winnipeg where it plans to build a 1,000,000+ TPY frac sand plant. By implementing this, in addition to building the Minago mine, Victory Nickel is well on its way to establishing and building a new, and very lucrative, industry for the province of Manitoba.

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Manitoba Geoscience Collaborations

Characterization of the Volcanological, Structural, and Metamorphic Setting of the VMS-hosting Chisel Sequence: Laurentian University Research Projects at Snow Lake, Manitoba
M.S. Engelbert, V. Friesen, J. Lam, H.L. Gibson, B. Lafrance, D. Tinkham (Laurentian University), and M. DeWolfe (Mount Royal University)

The Flin-Flon Glennie Domain of the Trans-Hudson Orogen hosts the largest Paleoproterozoic volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) district in the world. Most of the VMS deposits occur within two of the seven tectono-stratigraphic assemblages of the Flin Flon Belt–the Flin Flon and Snow Lake assemblages. The Snow Lake assemblage is interpreted to have evolved as a pericratonic arc outboard of the Superior craton and may have a different volcanic, petrogenetic and deformation history than the other assemblages in the Flin Flon Belt. Six research projects are being conducted through the Mineral Exploration Research Centre at Laurentian University in order to better understand the metallogenesis of the Snow Lake arc assemblage and provide new constraints on the metallogeny and assembly of juvenile arc sequences within the western Trans-Hudson Orogen. These projects investigate the tectonic, magmatic, volcanic, and metamorphic evolution of the Snow Lake arc assemblage. The current results of these projects are summarized with an emphasis on the productive VMS ore interval of the Chisel sequence. The Chisel sequence is a 3–5 km thick succession of volcanic rocks that occurs within the Snow Lake arc assemblage. It is host to six economic Zn-Pb-Cu-Ag-Au VMS deposits that are now interpreted to have formed within a single time-stratigraphic ore interval that has been structurally repeated. This ore interval occurs at the contact between the Lower and Upper Chisel sequences and marks a break in the emplacement of voluminous volcaniclastic material. The ore interval represents a period of relative volcanic quiescence and subsidence following rhyolite dome development and constituted an ideal environment for VMS formation.

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GEM-2 Hudson-Ungava Project: A Collaborative Effort to Uncover Secrets of the Paleozoic Strata of the Hudson Bay Basin in Northeastern Manitoba
M.P.B. Nicolas (Manitoba Geological Survey) and D. Lavoie (Geological Survey of Canada)

The Manitoba Geological Survey (MGS) is participating in the Hudson–Ungava Project of the Geological Survey of Canada’s Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM) program 2.  The first phase of the GEM Energy Program (2008-2013) had significant progress in our geological and economic understanding, and appraisal of the Hudson Bay Basin.  The new GEM-2 program builds on this data through the new ‘Hudson–Ungava Project’, in which the hydrocarbon component is designed to address unsolved or new scientific issues. A project of this size and scope can only be successfully executed with the collaboration of several organizations, each of which brings to the project a particular expertise. The project collaborators include the Geological Survey of Canada, Ontario Geological Survey, Canada-Nunavut Geoscience Office, University of Manitoba, the Manitoba Museum, and Laurentian University. The work being done in Manitoba for GEM-2 is focused on detailed stratigraphic and structural studies. Activities started this year by the MGS included: (1) detailed core and outcrop descriptions; (2) detailed δ13C and δ18O stable-isotope profiling on select cores; (3) conodont, chitinozoan and palynological biostratigraphy; 4) sampling of organic-rich layers for organic-geochemistry analysis by Rock Eval 6TM; and (5) reconnaissance mapping of the Paleozoic outcrops along the Churchill River and Churchill coastal area.

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Geoscience Collaboration in Manitoba - The Future of Sustainable Resource Extraction
M. Fayek (University of Manitoba)

Canada is a world leader in the production of energy, metals and minerals. Manitoba is one of Canada’s top producers of metals.  To remain at the forefront of an ever-competitive mining and exploration market, Manitoba and its industries need to adopt a leadership position in the development of strategies for innovative and sustainable resource extraction. This is particularly important in an era where climate change awareness has resulted in a heightened focus on efficient recovery and lower environmental footprint, and the public is demanding greater corporate social responsibility. Provincial and federal regulatory agencies are aware of the benefits associated with scientific research and technology development, because improved resource extraction techniques and environmental metrics can improve regulatory guidelines and offer companies effective and less costly methods for complying with the regulations associated with resource extraction.  Collaboration between Universities in Manitoba, the Manitoba Geological Survey and industry can bring together a myriad of expertise that will nurture creativity and innovation.  These types of collaborations will provide a multi-disciplinary approach to sustainable resource extraction and provide training for the next generation of scientists with technical skills that are in high demand.

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Integrated Interpretation of 3D Seismic, Borehole Gravity and Lithogeochemical Data of the Lalor VMS Deposit: Can We Image Hydrothermal Alteration at Depth?
E. Schetselaar, G. Bellefleur and N. el Goumi (Geological Survey of Canada)

3D-3 component seismic and gravity borehole data were acquired over the Lalor VMS deposit for the TGI4 program to develop, with the aid of 3D modelling, methods that enhance effectiveness of deep exploration. Apart from direct detection of sulphide ore, a key research question is to what extent the footwall hydrothermal alteration of VMS deposits can be geophysically imaged. Multivariate analysis of co-located samples from borehole geophysical and lithogeochemical logs shows higher seismic impedance and density contrasts for altered rocks in comparison to their weakly altered counterparts. On the other hand we found that seismic impedance and density contrasts between altered rocks with mafic and felsic volcanic protoliths are at least as strong as those between their weakly altered counterparts. This implies that the subtle geophysical response of hydrothermal alteration may be masked by the responses from the protolith contacts it overprints. Our 3D geological modelling results are consistent with this conclusion, demonstrating that reflectors associated to contacts between mafic and felsic protoliths can be traced on seismic data through the hydrothermal alteration zone and beyond drilling extent. The question whether the subtle geophysical response of hydrothermal alteration can be differentiated against a more homogeneous background remains currently unresolved, as it requires more work, including carefully designed forward modelling experiments.

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Paleoproterozoic Auriferous VMS Belts and Deposits – Key Aspects and Implications for Exploration
P. Mercier-Langevin and S. Pehrsson (Geological Survey of Canada)

Volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits contain variable amounts of gold, both in terms of average grade and total gold content. Globally, Paleoproterozoic deposits including deposits of the Flin Flon-Snow Lake belt and of the Skellefte District (Sweden) are, when compared with deposits of all ages (geometric mean gold grade of 0.8 g/t Au, n=513), slightly richer in gold. Although a number of processes active at various scale are responsible for gold enrichment in VMS deposits, the geodynamic setting in which they are formed (e.g., submarine arc systems build on older pericratonic substrates) seems to have influenced the overall gold budget of Paleoproterozoic VMS belts and deposits. The average (geometric mean) gold grade of VMS deposits of the Flin Flon-Snow Lake belt is 1.10 g/t Au. Lalor is the largest deposit in the Snow Lake camp (25.3 Mt at 2.9 g/t Au, ~73 t Au). The deposit consists of a series of stratigraphically and structurally stacked base metal, Au- and Au-Cu-rich ore lenses associated with a large footwall alteration halo metamorphosed to amphibolite grade. Local remobilization is associated with peak deformation and metamorphism (Caté et al., 2014). The Flin Flon deposit, with 63 Mt of ore at 2.64 g/t Au, contained over 165 t Au, making it the largest gold deposit of Manitoba. Gold-rich zones and/or elevated gold background were also known at the other deposits of the belt, such as Hudvam, Photo Lake, Elizabeth Lake and Ideal. A common feature of these gold-enriched deposits is their crustally-contaminated Pb isotopic signature, which along with their Ag-Au content and, in some cases, low Zn numbers suggests a thicker substrate during eruption and possibly shallower-water setting. The average (geometric mean) gold grade of VMS deposits of the Skellefte District is 1.14 g/t Au. The Boliden deposit is the richest Paleoproterozoic VMS deposit (8.3 Mt at 15.9 g/t Au, ~132 t Au). It consists of a precious metal-rich and base metal-poor massive sulphide lens in which gold is closely associated with arsenopyrite bodies. Aluminous alteration is a distinctive characteristic at Boliden. Other VMS deposits of the district, such as Petiknas North, Holmtjarn and Kristineberg Au, contain significant amounts of gold. Paleoproterozoic belts therefore represent a prime exploration target for auriferous VMS deposits, and their distinctive characteristics must be taken into account in designing exploration programs.

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Precious Metal-bearing Volcanogenic Massive Sulphide (VMS) Deposits of the Newfoundland Appalachians Geological Setting, Styles, and Lessons Learned from the TGI-4 VMS Project
S. J. Piercey, S. Brueckner, J. Cloutier, S. Gill, S. Lode (Memorial University of Newfoundland), P. Mercier-Langevin (Geological Survey of Canada), J-L. Pilote (Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Precious metal-bearing VMS deposits of the Newfoundland Appalachians occur principally within the 510 Ma Tally Pond group (Lemarchant) and the ~485 Ma lower Pacquet Harbour Group (Ming). The Lemarchant deposit is hosted in a bimodal calc-alkalic to transitional assemblage dominated by felsic volcanic rocks, where mineralization consists of Zn-Pb-Ba-Au-Ag-rich lenses interpreted to have formed at low temperatures (<250oC). In contrast, the Ming deposit is associated with an ophiolite-like boninitic assemblage and hosted by boninite-like rhyolitic rocks (Rambler rhyolite). The ore at Ming consists of Cu-(Zn-Pb)-Ag-Au-rich sulphide lenses and are interpreted to have formed at high temperatures (>250-300oC). Precious metal-rich VMS deposits in Newfoundland are characterized by some contrasting characteristics but are, in general, associated with: 1) rift-related sequences with high temperature magmatic products; 2) deformed and thrust-imbricated sequences; 3) often have low pH, high fO2, and intermediate to high fS2 mineral assemblages (e.g., sulfosalt-rich) and epithermal suite element enrichments (Sb-As-Hg-Bi-Sn-Te), in addition to normal VMS assemblages and base metal enrichment; 4) contain hydrothermal sedimentary rocks with enrichments in precious metals and associated minerals, which are not present in hydrothermal sediments proximal to base metal-rich deposits; 6) are interpreted to have formed in potentially shallow water volcanic assemblages; and 7) are proximal to orogenic Au deposits, but have distinct mineralogy, geology, alteration, and stratigraphic/structural controls, arguing against an epigenetic orogenic Au-Ag enrichment, but rather syngenetic VMS-related Au-Ag-enrichment. Lessons learned from the Newfoundland Appalachians are exportable to similar environments and belts globally, including the Flin Flon-Snow Lake district in Manitoba.

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Quaternary Geology Update for Northernmost Manitoba
M.S. Trommelen (Geological Survey of Canada)

This presentation highlights new products and results from fieldwork and data analysis in northeast Manitoba; Churchill River to Gillam. ~360 field sites were visited during this past summer.  One focus was on interpreting the ice-flow history, using both field-based ice-flow indicators and till-clast fabric analyses.  ~200 till samples were collected, both for regional surface compilation and for stratigraphic classification of thick till units. The Hudson Bay Lowland area of Manitoba is particularly interesting, as there are thick deposits of sediment here that may have been deposited during multiple glacial cycles. Fieldwork was also conducted just to the west, overlying the Precambrian Shield, where glacial sediment deposition can be thin. Ongoing graduate work conducted by students at the University of Waterloo will seek to understand the relationship between till in the two areas.

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Structural Controls on the Lalor VMS Deposit Geometry and Ore Distribution - Preliminary Results
A. Caté (Institut national de la recherche scientifique-Centre Eau), P. Mercier-Langevin (Geological Survey of Canada), P.-S. Ross (Institut national de la recherche scientifique-Centre Eau), D. Simms (Hudbay Minerals Inc.), S. Duff (University of Ottawa), and B. Dubé (Geological Survey of Canada)

The Lalor volcanogenic massive sulphide deposit is the largest deposit in the Snow Lake mining camp with combined reserves and resources of 25.3 Mt at 0.79% Cu, 5.01% Zn, 2.9 g/t Au and 25.04 g/t Ag. The deposit consists in a series of stratigraphically and structurally stacked base metal-rich, Au-rich and Au-Cu-rich ore lenses. The host volcanic succession is affected by a protracted and extensive hydrothermal alteration and is bounded by structural contacts that formed early in the structural history (pre-D2). Two regional deformation events (D2 and D3) have a major impact on the geometry of the ore bodies, with structural thinning (e.g. D2 fold limbs), thickening (e.g. fold hinges), repetition and transposition. From stope scale to deposit scale, the shape of the ore lenses is strongly influenced by the combination of the two deformation events. D1 deformation features have been obliterated by later events and their importance is still not clear at this stage. Local remobilization of some base and precious metals out of the massive sulphide lenses during deformation has occurred and represents post-VMS reconcentration of part of the ore. These mechanical to fluid-assisted remobilizations impact on the overall geometry and grade of ore shells and are locally associated with significant modification to the gangue assemblages.

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Short Course: Geology and Mineral Potential of Manitoba’s Premier Mineral Belts: Rice Lake/Bird River Belt

Geological Overview of the Bird River Belt, Southeastern Manitoba
H.P. Gilbert and P.D. Kremer (Manitoba Geological Survey)

The Neoarchean Bird River Belt (BRB) in the Bird River Subprovince (southwestern Superior Province) occurs in a transitional oceanic–continental-margin setting between flanking older cratonic blocks — the North Caribou Superterrane to the north and the Winnipeg River Subprovince to the south. The predominant arc-type rocks of the BRB are tectonically distinct from flanking, mid-ocean-ridge basalt (MORB)–type basaltic sequences that may represent a back-arc setting, possibly associated with early arc rifting. The continental-arc magmatism spanned approximately 80 Ma (2.80–2.72 Ga). Two geochemically distinct arc-type sequences are recognized (north and south panels, respectively). The north panel is akin to modern subduction-related rocks at active continental margins, whereas the south panel documents incipient rifting in an extensional tectonic regime. Subsequent to arc volcanism, orogenic sedimentation (2.71–2.70 Ga) resulted in the deposition of turbidites (Booster Lake Formation) and fluvial alluvial deposits (Flanders Lake Formation). These orogenic sedimentary rocks may be stratigraphically equivalent to epiclastic rocks and metamorphic derivatives in the English River Subprovince, northeast of the BRB. Base-metal mineralization prospects in the BRB include both magmatic types and stratigraphically associated occurrences. The Bird River Sill hosts base-metal and platinum group-element (PGE) mineralization; elsewhere, base-metal mineralization commonly occurs at lithological contacts within the volcano-sedimentary sequences. The BRB also hosts the TANCO mine at Bernic Lake, wholly owned by the Cabot Corporation. The mine currently produces Cs from pegmatite and accounts for approximately 80% of global Cs reserves.

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Geological Overview of the Rice Lake Belt
S.D. Anderson (Manitoba Geological Survey)

The Rice Lake greenstone belt is situated at the western end of the Uchi domain of the Archean Superior province and is flanked to the north by the North Caribou terrane (NCT) and to the south by the English River subprovince (ERS). Collectively, these tectonic entities record ~360 million years of crustal evolution, involving two major phases of crustal growth. The Mesoarchean (ca. 3.01–2.85 Ga) phase is recorded within the NCT, north of the crustal-scale Wanipigow fault, by vestiges of 3.01–2.99 Ga tonalitic basement, overlying 2.98–2.92 Ga platform and continental-rift sequences (Wallace assemblage), minor 2.94–2.88 continental-arc plutons, and a fault-bounded 2.89–2.85 Ga volcanic arc–arc-rift complex (Garner assemblage). This phase included the initial rifting of the NCT followed by crustal growth by accretion along the rifted margin; komatiite flows and ultramafic intrusions associated with rift assemblages in the NCT have potential for magmatic Ni-Cu(±PGE) deposits. Following an extended interval (ca. 2.85–2.75 Ga) of magmatic quiescence across the region, the Neoarchean (ca. 2.75–2.65 Ga) phase of crustal growth was driven initially by northward accretion and culminated in regional collisional orogeny. An oceanic-arc complex (ca. 2.75–2.72 Ga) outboard of the NCT margin records a transition from back-arc (Bidou assemblage) to arc-rift (Gem assemblage) volcanism, the latter showing good potential for base-metal VMS deposits, whereas the adjacent NCT contains widespread and broadly coeval (2.75–2.70 Ga) continental-arc plutons. Fault-bounded basins of 2.71–2.70 Ga fluvial-alluvial rocks (San Antonio assemblage) mark the probable Neoarchean suture, manifest as the Wanipigow fault. Coeval submarine fans (Edmunds assemblage) shed off this accretionary margin record sedimentation in response to major uplift and erosion, followed closely by high-grade regional metamorphism, deformation and anatexis (2.69–2.66 Ga) of equivalent rocks in the ERS, related to terminal collision, basin inversion and regional orogenesis. Deformation structures in the Rice Lake belt indicate a complex history of synvolcanic faulting (D1), early accretion-related uplift (D2) and thrust faulting (D3), followed by sinistral transpression (D4) during regional orogenesis, and late-orogenic dextral transcurrent shear (D5) along crustal-scale faults. Fluid flow along syn-D4 brittle-ductile structures produced the world-class gold deposit at Rice Lake in the later stages of regional orogenesis.

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Layered and Disrupted Chromitites, Chromitiferous Zone, Chrome Property, Bird River Sill: Products of Synmagmatic Processes
R.F.J. Scoates and J.S. Scoates

Prior to the discovery of the Ring of Fire intrusion-hosted stratiform chromitites in northwestern Ontario, the chromitites of the ca. 2043 Ma Bird River Sill represented Canada's known resource of chrome. The 20 km long and 600-700 m thick Bird River Sill intruded the oldest unit in the Bird River Belt, the Northern MORB-type Formation. On the Chrome property, the sill consists of a lower ultramafic series (~200 m thick), a transition series (~20 m thick), and an upper mafic series (~500 m thick). Stratiform chromitites are restricted to the Chromitiferous zone, an interval of diffuse to dense chromitite layers (5-30 and 30-60 % chromite, respectively) that occupies the upper 60 m of the ultramafic series. The chrome resource on the Chrome property has been estimated at 7 Mt grading 6.9% Cr2O3 (Perron, 1995) with metallurgical tests on a bulk sample from the base of Lower Main chromitite to the top of Upper Main chromitite yielding a concentrate of 30% Cr2O3 with a Cr/Fe ratio of 0.84:1.00 (Perron, 1995, Andrews and Jackman, 1988). Notwithstanding their large-scale along-strike continuity, the chromitite layers on the Chrome property display numerous local irregularities and discontinuities. These disruptions postdate formation of the layers, but occurred before complete crystallization of the crystal mush and are synmagmatic in origin. Similar post-depositional structures have been observed in chromitites from the Bushveld Complex of South Africa. Numerous structures displayed by the layered chromitites provide evidence for disruption of previously consolidated cumulates, magmatic current transport, erosion of cumulates through magmatic scour, and brittle and ductile deformation of dense chromitite through hydrostatic over pressure (localized ponding of upward migrating interstitial magma beneath dense chromitite layers). Slumping of unstable crystal piles may have resulted through fluidization originating from seismic events associated with the process(es) of intrusion. Layered trough structures record local unconformities and local concentrations of chromitite fragments are evidence for episodes of vigorous magmatic flux of sufficient magnitude to break-up existing chromitites and transport the fragments to their present site of concentration. These features underscore the dynamic nature of the magma(s) involved in the formation of the Chromitiferous zone in the Bird River Sill.

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Mineral Chemistry of Chromite in the Mayville Intrusion from the Bird River Greenstone Belt, Southeastern Manitoba
E. Yang (Manitoba Geological Survey)

This talk presents chemical composition data of chromites from the Neoarchean Mayville mafic-ultramafic intrusion (MI) in the north arm of the Bird River greenstone belt, and compares it to that of chromites in the Bird River Sill (BRS) in the southern limb of the belt, in order to provide insight into the magmatic affinity, magmatic processes, tectonic setting, and petrogenetic relationships. Chromites in the MI are characterized by higher Fe-number [Fe/(Fe2+ + Mg)] and Al/Mg ratios, variable Cr-number [Cr/(Cr + Al)] and lower Mg-number [Mg/(Mg + Fe2+)] compared to those in the BRS, indicating the parental magma(s) to the MI are of tholeiitic affinity, like those of the BRS, but more evolved and may have been derived from subcontinental aluminous lithospheric mantle enriched by slab melt(s) related to plate subduction. In contrast, the parental magma(s) to the BRS were less evolved and may have been sourced from more depleted subcontinental lithosphere mantle. Although the MI is synchronous with the BRS and both are thus related to the extensive ‘Bird River magmatic event’ proposed by Houlé et al. (2013), they are interpreted to result from different petrogenetic processes that reflect either different sources or degrees of differentiation.

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Orogenic Gold Deposits in the Rice Lake Belt and South Margin of the North Caribou Terrane
S.D. Anderson (Manitoba Geological Survey)

The Rice Lake belt is the most significant orogenic gold district in Manitoba, with 2.2 million ounces of past-production and nearly 4 million ounces of total resource. The belt is situated in the western Uchi domain of the Archean Superior province and is flanked to the north by the North Caribou terrane (NCT) and to the south by the English River subprovince (ERS). It is bounded on the north by the crustal-scale Wanipigow fault, which coincides with fault-bounded basins of ‘Timiskaming-like’ sedimentary rocks. The belt is thought to represent a north-verging accretionary orogen, which culminated in collisional orogenesis at ca. 2.69–2.66 Ga. The largest gold deposits in the belt are hosted by 2.75–2.72 Ga volcanic rocks and subvolcanic sills of the Bidou and Gem assemblages, and define two distinct trends on either side of the synvolcanic (ca. 2.72 Ga) Ross River pluton. Minor deposits also occur in this and other synvolcanic plutons, and in Mesoarchean (3.01–2.88 Ga) plutons of the adjacent NCT. In each setting, gold is hosted by quartz-carbonate vein systems controlled by conjugate arrays of discrete, northwest to north-trending dextral and east-northeast-trending sinistral shear zones, which formed within competent rocks or along strength anisotropies during regional deformation. Vein textures and geometries indicate synkinematic emplacement under brittle-ductile rheological conditions in a regime of northeast–southwest compression, corresponding to the 'D4' phase of regional deformation. Auriferous veins contain minor albite, chlorite, sericite and tourmaline. Pyrite is the dominant sulphide mineral (± chalcopyrite, galena or telluride minerals); arsenopyrite is restricted to veins along the margins of the belt. Gold ores are characterized by high Au:Ag ratios (>5:1), and very low concentrations of base metals and pathfinder elements (e.g., As, Bi, B, Sb, W). Wallrock alteration varies from negligible to intense and is typically zoned outward over narrow widths from proximal ankerite-sericite-albite-pyrite to distal calcite-chlorite, consistent with significant additions of CO2 and K, and lesser S and Na. Absolute timing remains poorly constrained; however, available age constraints (late-D4) appear compatible with a single, perhaps protracted phase of mineralization broadly coeval with peak orogenesis in the adjacent ERS (ca. 2.69–2.68 Ga). Exploration success in the past 10 years has come about by systematic drill-testing of historical showings and the extensions of favourable stratigraphy, but has since shifted toward the integration of detailed structural mapping, LiDAR survey data and 3D modeling to define structural-stratigraphic targets at depth.

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Overview of Chromite and Ni-Cu Deposits of the Bird River Greenstone Belt in a Ring of Fire Metallogenic Context
M.G. Houlé (Geological Survey of Canada), C.M. Lesher (Laurentian University), V. McNicoll and V. Bécu (Geological Survey of Canada), R.T. Metsaranta (Ontario Geological Survey), A.-A. Sappin (Geological Survey of Canada), H.P. Gilbert and X.M. Yang (Manitoba Geological Survey)

Chrome, nickel and vanadium mineralization in ultramafic and mafic intrusions were considered to be of marginal significance in the Superior province until the discovery of world-class Cr deposits, major Ni-Cu-(PGE) deposits, and potentially significant Fe-Ti-V-(P) mineralization in the McFaulds Lake greenstone belt (MLGB, aka Ring of Fire) in northern Ontario. Recent work and development within this emerging mining district have greatly renewed interest for these types of mineralization associated with mafic-ultramafic intrusions across the Superior province. The MLGB is an extensive (>200 km long), arcuate-shaped, Meso- to Neoarchean, greenstone belt occurring in the central part of the Oxford-Stull domain (Ontario) characterized by an unusual endowment of mafic to ultramafic intrusive rocks hosting world-class chromite deposits (e.g., Black Thor, Blackbird), a major Ni-Cu-(PGE) deposit (Eagle’s Nest), and significant Fe-Ti-V-P mineralization (e.g., Thunderbird). At least two generations of mafic-ultramafic intrusions (ca. 2810 & 2735 Ma) have been acknowledged to host these types of mineralization, although the bulk of significant mineralization appears to be associated with Neoarchean intrusions. Cr and Ni-Cu-PGE mineralization occur essentially within ultramafic-dominated intrusions, whereas Fe-Ti-V-P mineralization occurs mainly within mafic-dominated intrusions. The Bird River greenstone belt (BRGB) in southeast Manitoba, which appears to be broadly correlative, contains numerous Neoarchean mafic-ultramafic intrusions that host significant Ni-Cu-(PGE) and Cr deposits and occurrences. Nine main intrusions occur over a strike length of 75 km laterally and 20 km across, located on either side of the Maskwa Lake Batholith. The internal stratigraphy variations of these intrusions can be characterized by two end members: 1) the very well layered Bird River Sill, which contains a lower ultramafic zone overlain by an upper mafic zone, and 2) the less well stratified Mayville intrusion, which contains a lower heterolithic intrusive breccia zone with sporadic mafic to ultramafic zones along the basal contact, overlain by a mafic zone. Despite their compositional differences, the BRGB intrusions are interpreted to have sourced from a single large mafic-ultramafic magmatic event at ca. 2743 Ma that also generated significant basal (e.g., Maskwa: Bird River Sill) or near basal (e.g., M2: Mayville Intrusion) Ni-Cu-(PGE) mineralization, as well as Cr mineralization (e.g., Chrome: Bird River Sill) higher up in the stratigraphy, near the contact between the ultramafic and mafic zones. Ongoing work is aimed at establishing the geological setting and characteristics of the Cr-(PGE), Ni-Cu-(PGE), PGE, and Fe-Ti-V-(P) orthomagmatic deposits in these areas, to help constrain the likelihood of discovering additional resources in the Bird River Greenstone Belt, but also in other frontier areas within the Superior Province and throughout the Canadian Shield.

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Rare Metal Pegmatites in the Bird River Subprovince
R. Linnen (Western University)

The pioneering work of Petr Černý and his students and colleagues over many years have resulted in the Bird River Subprovince being one of the best understood pegmatite fields in the world. This subprovince contains a number of pegmatite groups, most notably the Bernic Lake Group, which hosts the Tanco pegmatite. These pegmatites typically belong to the LCT (lithium-cesium-tantalum) family of pegmatites and fractional crystallization is the most important process through which incompatible elements (Li-Cs-Ta among others) are concentrated. Several metals are produced predominantly from pegmatites, but these metals are generally produced as ‘industrial minerals’, where the product is sold on contract. Roughly half of the world’s lithium production comes from pegmatites, primarily as spodumene and Tanco is a former lithium producer. Most of the world’s cesium is currently mined at Tanco, where cesium formate is produced from pollucite. Finally, LCT pegmatites are also an important source of tantalum, and Tanco is a former Ta producer. Exploration for LCT pegmatites involves geology: determining the structural controls of pegmatite emplacement and the direction of fractional crystallization; mineral chemistry: identifying fractionation trends in minerals, which are used as vectors to the most highly fractionated (Li-Cs-Ta-rich) pegmatites, and; lithogeochemistry & soil geochemistry: identifying Li, Rb and Cs anomalies in rocks and soils to delineate drill targets. Recent work has also shown that the analysis of fracture minerals can also be applied to rare metal pegmatite exploration. The extension of the Bird River belt into Ontario also hosts LCT pegmatites and overall this belt remains prospective for Li, Cs and Ta.

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Review of Magmatic Sulfide Resources of the Bird River Belt in a Global Context
D.C. Peck (North American Palladium Ltd.)

The in situ value of contained metal in the currently defined 43-101 compliant Ni, Cu and PGE resources in the Bird River Belt is approximately $US 2.5 billion. Applying standard assumptions for capital requirements, borrowing costs, resource to reserve conversion rates, dilution and recoveries yields a net present value of <$US 250 million. In a global context this is a small cumulative magmatic sulfide resource that continues to have difficulty competing against the numerous larger and/or higher-grade pre-development Ni-Cu projects that are currently known. A higher metal price environment may unlock the value of the larger projects in the Bird River belt (Makwa & Mayville projects – Mustang Minerals Corp.). However, in the globally-competitive base metal market the prospects for major new magmatic sulfide mining operations in the Bird River belt likely rests with future higher-value discoveries. To this end the belt hosts an impressive diversity in styles of PGE, Cu and Ni sulfide mineralization that may testify to a connection with a much larger magmatic province than is apparent from the exposed volume of mafic-ultramafic intrusive bodies. Despite lingering uncertainties about the existence of larger and higher-grade resources at mineable depths, a comprehensive assessment of the depth of investigation and exploration methods applied in historical exploration campaigns in the belt is warranted – particularly in the context of recent advances in the understanding of the tectonomagmatic evolution of the Bird River belt and its Ni-Cu-PGE endowment.

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Strategic and Industrial Mineral Potential of the Rice Lake and Bird River Belts
J.D. Bamburak (Manitoba Geological Survey)

The Neoarchean and Mesoachean Rice Lake greenstone belt (and immediate vicinity) within the Uchi Domain in Manitoba does not appear to contain a large number of strategic and industrial mineral deposits. Apart from minor soapstone/talc occurrences, minor quartz veins and crushed stone quarries, the most significant known industrial mineral is a large Paleozoic outlier of silica sand that contains frac sand. The outlier, comprised of the Ordovician Winnipeg Formation, is situated southeast of Seymourville, near the western end of the exposed belt. For completeness, it should also be pointed out that the English River basin, lying immediately to the south of the Uchi Domain, contains a high purity quartz deposit near Happy Lake. And, the basin also has the potential for discovery of a cobalt deposit, similar to that present at Werner Lake, located a short distance over the provincial boundary, in northern Ontario. However, in striking contrast to the above, the Neoarchean Bird River greenstone belt (and immediate vicinity), south of the English River basin, is known to host an impressive array of strategic and industrial minerals – many of which have been produced (tantalite, spodumene and pollucite) or recognized at the world renowned Tanco pegmatite mine at Bernic Lake. In addition, the belt includes the Archean Bird River Sill (a differentiated mafic to ultramafic layered intrusion) that contains one of North America’s largest deposits of low grade chromite. The chromite could be used to produce a ferrochrome-nickel master alloy to replace stainless steel scrap in the production of stainless steel. It should also be noted that anomalous values of platinum and palladium have also been discovered in the sill. The western end of the exposed belt is also covered by Ordovician Winnipeg Formation silica sand. In the past, a suitable environment for uranium precipitation was noted in groundwater sampling near the Brokenhead River, a short distance to the south of the belt.

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Syn-deformational Emplacement of the Bernic Lake Pegmatite Group, Bird River Greenstone Belt, Southeastern Manitoba
P.D. Kremer (Manitoba Geological Survey), D.W. Davis (University of Toronto), S. Lin (University of Waterloo), and R.L. Linnen (Western University)

Rare metal bearing pegmatites in the Cat Lake–Winnipeg River pegmatite field of southeastern Manitoba are invariably localized around belt-scale, formation-bounding D2 shear zones. The Bernic Lake pegmatite group, of which the world famous Tanco pegmatite is most noteworthy, is emplaced into both brittle and ductile structural traps in a variety of lithologies in and around the north Bernic Lake shear zone, which separates southern panel MORB-like volcanic rocks from bimodal arc volcanic rocks of the Bernic Lake formation. East of Bernic Lake, pegmatites are hosted in highly-deformed metavolcanic rocks and, although they show many features consistent with passive crystallization, they are folded and/or boudinaged. Conversely, the Tanco pegmatite is hosted in a medium- to coarse-grained sub-volcanic gabbro and occurs as a doubly-dipping, subhorizontal body intruded along a prominent brittle, conjugate fracture set. Structural and geochronological analyses on both shear- and fracture-hosted pegmatites indicate that they were emplaced coevally during a belt-wide tectonomagmatic event associated with reactivation of the North Bernic Lake shear zone during D3 deformation. This talk will discuss the first and second order structural controls on the Bernic Lake pegmatite group and examine the interplay between directed stresses, dilational forces, and rheological heterogeneity of the host rocks with respect to their influence on the contrasting styles, shapes, and orientations of syn- to late deformational rare metal pegmatites.

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