The Ministry of Northern Development and Mines' ("MNDM") exemption from Ontario's Environmental Assessment Act for certain MNDM activities has been extended until 2012. The expiry date of two Declaration Orders has been extended, affecting mine hazard rehabilitation activities carried out using the Abandoned Mines Rehabilitation Fund, and disposition of certain rights to Crown resources. Each exemption typically affects fewer than five projects per year.

The Minister has extended the exemption to allow MNDM to complete a process of modernizing the Mining Act. The Minister's decision requires MNDM to develop a Class Environmental Assessment by December 2012, and to provide regular progress updates in the interim. MNDM must also develop a Memorandum of Understanding to address mitigation of cultural heritage resources. For more information see: The Ontario Gazette, June 27, 2009