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Joint Review Panel Established for the Proposed Marathon Platinum Group Metals and Copper Mine Project in Ontario

OTTAWA, August 9, 2011 - Canada's Environment Minister Peter Kent and Ontario's Minister of the Environment John Wilkinson announced today the establishment of a three-member joint review panel for the environmental assessment of the proposed Marathon Platinum Group Metals and Copper Mine Project in Ontario.

Minister Kent, in consultation with Minister Wilkinson, has appointed Dr. Louis LaPierre as the Panel chair, and Dr. David Pearson and Dr. Philip H. Byer as Panel members. Biographical information on the Panel chair and members is available in the accompanying backgrounder.

The Panel has a mandate under both the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act to consider whether the project is likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects. After the conclusion of the review process, the Panel will prepare a report setting out its conclusions and recommendations relating to the environmental assessment of the project.

This is the first time that Ontario has formed a joint review panel with the federal government. This joint review panel process, will allow for careful study and a single, comprehensive assessment of both the possible impacts and benefits of the project before any decisions are made by Canada and Ontario.

Also, three documents related to the project were issued today - the final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Guidelines, the Joint Review Panel Agreement (JPR Agreement), and the provincial Minister's Harmonization Order.

The JPR Agreement for the environmental assessment was signed by Minister Kent and Minister Wilkinson. The JPR Agreement, which took into consideration comments received from the public and Aboriginal groups, describes the Panel's terms of reference as well as the process to be followed for conducting the joint panel review.

Minister Kent has issued the EIS Guidelines to the proponent, Stillwater Canada Inc. The EIS Guidelines, developed in collaboration with the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, provide direction to the proponent and identify the information that will be required in the EIS. The EIS will provide an analysis of the potential environmental effects of the proposed project. The EIS Guidelines also took into consideration comments received from the public and Aboriginal groups.

Ontario's first Harmonization Order was issued by Minister Wilkinson. The Harmonization Order facilitates the integration of both jurisdictions' environmental assessment requirements through a joint panel review process.

The JPR Agreement, including the terms of reference, along with more information on this project, is available in the Canadian Environmental Assessment Registry, reference number 10-05-54755 and on the Ontario Ministry of the Environment website at www.ene.gov.on.ca/environment/ .

To receive information of the activities relating to the joint review panel process, provide a mailing address, email address or fax number to:

Marathon Platinum Group Metals and Copper Mine Project
Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
160 Elgin Street, 22nd floor, Ottawa, ON K1A 0H3
MarathonMine.review@ceaa-acee.gc.ca

About the Project

Stillwater Canada Inc. proposes to develop and operate the Marathon Platinum Group Metals and Copper Mine Project approximately 10 kilometres north of the town of Marathon. This Project involves the establishment and operation of an open pit mine and mill for the purpose of extracting and processing ore containing copper and platinum group metals and including, but not limited to, any ancillary activities and the activities outlined below:

  • the construction and/or use of equipment, buildings and structures;
  • the establishment, construction and operation of tailing impoundment areas, explosives factory and magazine facilities, waste rock storage areas, water management facilities, transmission lines, temporary and emergency generation facilities, and activities to mitigate environmental impacts;
  • the decommissioning, closure and abandonment of the mine and mine-related infrastructure;
  • the establishment, construction and/or modification and use of transportation infrastructure including access roads, highways and/or rail lines to support the above-mentioned activities and the transport of final mine concentrate(s).

About the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency administers the federal environmental assessment process, which identifies the potential environmental effects of proposed projects and measures to avoid or mitigate those effects, in support of sustainable development.

About the Ontario Ministry of the Environment

The Ministry of the Environment is responsible for protecting clean and safe air, land and water to ensure healthy communities, ecological protection and sustainable development for present and future generations of Ontarians.

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