Mar 08, 2013- 2:44 PM
Nickel Belt MP Claude Gravelle and MPP France Gélinas met with Vale officials in Sudbury on March 1 and again this week at the Prospectors and Developers Conference (PDAC) in Toronto to address concerns about the decision to move from a two-furnace to one-furnace operation at the company's Copper Cliff smelter.
“Vale stressed the clean air benefits in having only the single furnace and we recognize that, but what remains to be seen is if, as they told us, any job loss will be achieved through attrition rather than workers losing their jobs,” said Gravelle. “Scaling back the Clean AER project a billion dollars from its original $2-billion plan is major.”
Vale announced in January that it will decrease spending on the massive pollution-reduction project in Sudbury.
“Vale is a major employer and contributor to business activities in Nickel Belt,” said Gélinas. “I appreciated their leadership and taking the time to update us on their plans for their Sudbury operations.
“Some information, such as the closing of a furnace and downsizing of their smelter workforce is worrisome. Other projects such as Totten, Copper Cliff Deep, Victor-Capre and the decrease in injuries are welcome news.”
Gravelle and Gélinas were joined by Ontario NDP Northern Development and Mines Critic Michael Mantha (MPP Algoma-Manitoulin) during the March 1 meeting, which included a tour of the Copper Cliff smelter and a briefing on the changes coming at the Vale Sudbury operation.