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Column: Mining Week showcases city's past and future

By: Guest Columnist

 | May 02, 2014 - 12:27 PM |
Vale retirees, from left, Real Gaudet and Adrien Savoie, talk with Wallbridge Mining Company Ltd. project geologist Dave Smith and geologist in training Marshall Hall on April 26 at the New Sudbury Shopping Centre. Mining industry representatives set up booths as part of Modern Mining and Technology Week. Photo by Arron Pickard.

Vale retirees, from left, Real Gaudet and Adrien Savoie, talk with Wallbridge Mining Company Ltd. project geologist Dave Smith and geologist in training Marshall Hall on April 26 at the New Sudbury Shopping Centre. Mining industry representatives set up booths as part of Modern Mining and Technology Week. Photo by Arron Pickard.

Since the first nickel and copper discoveries almost 140 years ago, Sudbury has evolved from a simple mining community into an internationally renowned, Canadian mining showcase and one of the most productive, technologically advanced and environmentally aware mining centres on the planet.

There certainly is a lot to celebrate now that the curtain has risen again on the annual Modern Mining & Technology Week (www.modernmining.ca) in our city.

It’s fitting, then, that the annual celebration of Greater Sudbury’s proud mining heritage and future received a significant makeover last year. The change was made because of a positive shift in the industry that wasn’t being reflected in the old name, and because the industry needs to attract exploration and mining professionals and workers to Sudbury.

As well, organizers of Modern Mining & Technology Sudbury are now hosting events year-round, including a career fair, an interactive MineOpportunity team competition for high schools, primary school tours, social media workshops, science fair competitions and a photography contest.

Not only did they want to better reflect the realities of the industry, they also wanted the process of including young people to be more than just one week a year. Local mining operations, together with a robust, internationally recognized supply and services sector, are a powerful engine for economic growth in Greater Sudbury, and well worth celebrating all year round.

In March, I represented Greater Sudbury at the annual Prospectors and Developers Conference in Toronto, promoting Greater Sudbury as the ideal place for companies to invest money and young people to invest their careers.

The day I returned to Greater Sudbury, I met with a delegation of government officials from Latvia who were visiting our city specifically to learn about how to mine and process ore sustainably and effectively. They went away very impressed by what they saw here.

In proclaiming Modern Mining & Technology Week today, we celebrate the mining innovation, entrepreneurship, research and intelligence that makes Greater Sudbury home to the largest integrated mining complex in the world.

It is a proclamation I am proud to make every year. Greater Sudbury is bringing together exploration, extraction, smelting, supply and services, education, rehabilitation, innovation, research and development. Nowhere else in the world will you find the mineral resources of the Earth being extracted within the confines of a modern urban city – a city gifted with an unparalleled wealth, quality of life and natural beauty.

Modern Mining & Technology Week is a reminder that we welcome and celebrate the mining sector in Greater Sudbury. It is part of our heritage, part of our success and it is clearly a big part of our future.

Marianne Matichuk is Mayor of the City of Greater Sudbury.

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