Manitoba Rocks! Celebrates Importance of Mining: Chomiak

May 27, 2010 | Government News

mb_rocks (260 x260)

Events at The Forks, May 27 to 29 

One of Manitoba’s most important primary resource industries will be showcased at Manitoba Rocks!, the provincial celebration of Mining Week at The Forks from tomorrow to Saturday, Innovation, Energy and Mines Minister Dave Chomiak announced today. 

Chomiak Official headshot (260 x 260)“The mineral industry makes a valuable contribution to the provincial economy and this week gives everyone a chance to learn more about it,” said Chomiak.  “For example, few people may realize that along with familiar metals like copper, nickel, zinc and gold, Manitoba also produces oil from the Williston Basin in southwestern Manitoba.” 

This week, the province will also launch a new curriculum-aligned learning resource for teachers and students developed through the combined efforts of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) Mining Matters, Manitoba Education and Manitoba Innovation, Energy and Mines.  

A resource kit called Mining Matters II The Earth’s Crust, has been revised and aligned with a component of the Manitoba Grade 7 science curriculum and teachers will be trained this week in its use as a feature of Provincial Mining Week.  There is special emphasis in this new resource on developing new understandings among students of the importance of a renewed respect for planet Earth and securing natural resources in a responsible and sustainable way, the minister said.   

Mining Matters II will help provide a solid basis upon which teachers and their students can gain understanding of the vital importance of Manitoba’s abundant mineral resources and how they can be extracted with care and used wisely to improve daily lives, Chomiak said. 

“PDAC Mining Matters is pleased to have collaborated with knowledgeable Manitoba teachers to adapt its existing Grade 7 unit to meet the requirements of the provincial curriculum with funding support from the Mining Industry Human Resources Council.  It is exciting to provide a customized educator resource that focuses on earth science and highlights the importance of Manitoba’s mineral resources,” said Patricia Dillon, president and CEO of PDAC Mining Matters. 

In 2009, mineral and petroleum production in Manitoba totalled about $1.9 billion.  The province’s mineral and petroleum industries employ about 5,400 people directly and another 18,000 in related businesses. 

The principle minerals and metals produced in Manitoba are nickel, copper, zinc, gold, petroleum, lithium and cesium.  Other minerals and metals mined are aggregates, building stone, peat, dolomite, spodumene, silver, salt, lime and gypsum. 

Provincial Mining Week runs until May 29.  Manitobans are invited to The Forks to learn about the province’s rich mining history and the importance of minerals to their daily lives.  The free activities include gold panning with champion gold-panner Yukon Dan, collecting mineral and fossil samples, talking to the Rock Doc and spinning the wheel to test your mining IQ for a prize. 

On Saturday, the mining industry and San Gold Corporation will also co-host the 2010 Manitoba Provincial Mine Rescue Competition at the Union Centre parkade, 275 Broadway from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.  This year marks 50 years of mine rescue competitions in Manitoba, a milestone for the mining sector, the minister said. 

“We encourage you to attend and experience the excellent showmanship of emergency response skills,” said Barrie Simoneau, director of risk management, Mines Accident Prevention Association of Manitoba.  “Traditionally, mine rescue competitions are held at a mine site, however, this year, we plan to demonstrate emergency response scenarios in a setting that can be viewed by the general public.” 

More information about PDAC Mining Matters is available online at  More information about mining week activities and Manitoba’s mineral resources is available at  For information on the Mine Rescue Competition, visit


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