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BREAKING: Sault Ste. Marie lands ferrochrome processing facility

News breaking at this hour at the Civic Centre
STOCK PHOTO: Raw chrome nugget

Noront Resources Ltd. has chosen Sault Ste. Marie as the future home of its ferrochrome processing facility.

The announcement is being made at this hour at the Sault Ste. Marie Civic Centre by Mayor Christian Provenzano and the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corp.

Noront Resources Ltd. is a major player in the emerging Ring of Fire metals camp in Ontario's James Bay Lowlands.

Full details will appear later on SooToday.

The following is a news release issued by the city:

Sault Ste. Marie chosen by Noront Resources as host location for FPF

Sault Ste. Marie has been selected by Noront Resources Ltd. as the host location for a Ferrochrome Production Facility (FPF).

The City’s submission to Noront was based on comprehensive research and analysis by the SSM FPF project team, in consultation with sector experts. It focused on competitive advantages such as: location, logistics, industrial workforce, infrastructure and the community, and was aided by a great partner in Algoma Steel, along with operating and capital costs that were attractive to Noront.

“This establishes what we know to be true: Sault Ste. Marie is a great place to do business,” said Mayor Christian Provenzano. “I want to recognize the efforts of the FPF project team, the support of the executive leadership at Algoma Steel, and the support of MP Sheehan, MPP Romano, Chief Sayers of Batchewana First Nation and Chief Syrette of Garden River First Nation. I also want to ensure our community and our Indigenous partners that we are committed to substantial community consultation and engagement as we move forward.”    

“Sault Ste. Marie was selected based on its environmental and site suitability, capital and operating costs and an assessment of community acceptance for hosting the facility,” said Noront President and CEO Alan Coutts. “We anticipate a lengthy and comprehensive environmental permitting process for our Ferrochrome Production Facility, which will allow us to engage in a fulsome way with the citizens of Sault Ste. Marie and other stakeholders including environmental groups and First Nations. 

Once operational, the FPF is expected to employ between 300 and 500 people directly, along with more than 1,000 indirectly through suppliers and other businesses. Noront plans to locate the FPF on Algoma Steel property, and is in the process of finalizing a land agreement.

Moving forward, key steps include environmental and feasibility assessments along with community consultation and engagement. Following completion of the aforementioned, project design will be initiated and technical approvals sought, leading to tendering for construction. This work will lead to construction of the FPF which is expected to begin in mid-2025 and it will take approximately three years to build, at an estimated cost of approximately $1 billion. The timeline is dependent on the development of road infrastructure to the Ring of Fire.

“The project team has developed a great relationship with Noront and its management team, and we are looking forward to continue working with them,” said Dan Hollingsworth, Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation Executive Director and Project Lead. “In particular, it will be important to educate and engage with the community regarding this project and the current technological process involved in a modern Ferrochrome Production Facility, and I know Noront is committed to work with us in this regard.”


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David Helwig

About the Author: David Helwig

David Helwig's journalism career spans seven decades beginning in the 1960s. His work has been recognized with national and international awards.
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