Federal Government Helping Chapleau Mine Go Electric

Chapleau's upcoming gold mine is getting a major boost from the federal government for its efforts to be Canada's first all-electric underground mine.

Federal Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi's announced $5-million through Natural Resources Canada's Clean Growth Program, to help Goldcorp's Borden Gold project replace all diesel mobile equipment with battery electric vehicles.

Minister Sohi also touts the close collaboration with indigenous communities - Chapleau Cree First Nation Chief Keith "Keeter" Corston spoke at the announcement, touting Goldcorp's collaborative efforts and the efforts of the Chapleau Cree, Chapleau Ojibwe and Brunswick House First Nations to work together.

Corston further lauded Goldcorp's commitment to minimizing the environmental impact, noting how the area - particularly Borden Lake - is sacred land.

Chapleau Mayor Michael Levesque is pleased with the announcement.

Mayor Levesque calls Borden Gold a long-overdue "economic kick-in-the-pants" for the community, hoping it will lead to spin-off economic action - though he notes a good relationship with Goldcorp, which supported the arena reconstruction and the hospital foundation.

Goldcorp's hoping to start commercial production at the mine in the second half of 2019, part of its plans to increase its overall production by 20 percent by 2021.