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Space Mining is in the Mix as Natural Resources Canada Makes Long Term Plans

Artist's concept of possible exploration programs. Just a few kilometers from the Apollo 17 Taurus Littrow landing site, a lunar mining facility harvests oxygen from the resource-rich volcanic soil of the eastern Mare Serenitatis. Credit: NASA.

Canada’s mining sector is in need of a long term plan to maintain Canada’s leading position in the industry as well as prepare for the future. That’s what provincial and federal ministers agreed to last summer. That plan is called the Canadian Minerals and Metals Plan (CMMP) and consultations are ongoing.

The CMMP consultation is being led by the Department of Natural Resources  (NRCan). On June 4th they held an expert engagement session on space mining in Ottawa that included representatives from the space community, the traditional mining community and government.

CMMP path forward landscape
Credit: NRCAN


SpaceQ interviewed a representative from government and the traditional mining sector for this weeks SpaceQ podcast.

The guests were Glenn Mason, Assistant Deputy Minister, Lands and Minerals Sector from the Department of Natural Resources and Michelle Ash, Chief Innovation Officer at traditional mining giant, Barrick Gold.

When NRCan began the planning process and released the CMMP discussion paper (below), the idea of space mining as part of the plan wasn’t consciously thought of. However, as you’ll hear from Glenn and Michelle, it is getting some thought in context synergies in technology development for the traditional mining sector and space mining as well as long term planning. And for the space community, that could be considered a win, if at a minimum, some language on space mining makes it to the final plan.

For those interested in the space industry’s take on space mining, I will direct you to episode 38 from March in which I spoke with Dale Boucher of Deltion.

Show timing notes:
Introduction – 00:16
Guest 1: Glenn Mason – 01:16
Guest 2: Michelle Ash – 20:44

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About Marc Boucher

Boucher is an entrepreneur, writer, editor & publisher. He is the founder of SpaceQ Media Inc. and CEO and co-founder of SpaceRef Interactive LLC. Boucher has 20+ years working in various roles in the space industry and a total of 30 years as a technology entrepreneur including creating Maple Square, Canada's first internet directory and search engine.

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