The North American Iron Ore Industry—A Decade into the 21st Century

CIM Montreal 2011
Abstract During the 20th century, the iron ore mining industries of Canada and the United States passed through periods of transformation. The beginning of the 21st century has seen another period of transformation, with the failure of a number of steel companies and with consolidation of control within the North American iron ore industry.

Canadian and United States iron ore production and the market control structure involved are changing rapidly. Consolidation of ownership, formation of foreign joint ventures, divestitures of upstream activities by steelmakers, and industry changes to ensure availability of feedstocks all played a role in recent developments in the North American iron ore industry. Canadian and U.S. iron ore operations and their strong linkage to downstream production, although isolated, must also be considered within the context of the changing global economy.

Projects using new technology to produce direct reduced iron nuggets of 96-98% iron content and other projects designed to produce steel at minesites may once again change the face of the iron ore industry.

Social and environmental issues related to sustainable development have had a significant effect on the North American iron ore industry.
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Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
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Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
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Author(s): Paul Tenhet, Kiley Zacharias
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Author(s): Raynald Jean
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Author(s): Glenn David Lyle, Andrew Dasys, Steve McKinnon, George McIssac
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Author(s): Jennifer Hargreaves, Alan Lock, Graeme Spiers, Peter Beckett
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Author(s): Ted Anderson
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Author(s): Ian Charles Thomas
Keywords: tiredness, sleepiness, Monitoring, Fatigue, driver
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Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Year: 2011
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Summary: This paper looks at the recently completed Westwood Project for IAMGOLD. This mine utilizes some of the largest drum hoists supplied to the North American market.
This project is an example of the incorporation of many of the design features discussed in the previous paper.
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Hoists, Drum Hoist Design
Year: 2011
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Summary: Rio Tinto exploite depuis 2009 une mine d’ilménite à ciel ouvert dans le sud-est de Madagascar – une île reconnue pour son système écologique unique et en péril. Vingt ans de planification ont précédé l’investissement. Examen des réussites, des défis et des conclusions à en tirer.
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Author(s): Jacques Gérin, Manon Vincelette
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Summary: This presentation is designed to take some of the mystery out of measuring social performance by applying monitoring and evaluation techniques to community relations and community development efforts at the project level. It will provide a brief and practical introduction to current international performance and assurance standards, include example indicators that can be used by site-level or corporate managers, and review current tools and their application.
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Year: 2011
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Summary: Many mines combine open pit with underground mining, and on many occasions the underground mine is and extension of the open-pit. In these circumstances the decision about where the open-pit stops and the underground starts is crucial and driven by many factors. This paper looks at some of the ways that this cut-over can be calculated and specifically examines the calculation of it using modern mine optimization software. The paper will include some case studies which will review various...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Optimisation, Underground, Open pit, Cutover
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Summary: Improving mining equipment performance and reliability with monitoring systems is an evolutionary process from most operations, Rio Tinto is no exception. Rio Tinto starting implementing Modular’s MineCare system in 2006, today the system is used at over 11 mines. This journey has resulted in many lessons learned and great case studies. In this presentation we will review the milestones in the journey and some of the great case studies along the way.
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Equipment, Rio Tinto, Asset, Health, Performance
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Summary: This presentation will demonstrate, through international and national mining case studies, how sustainability can been successfully embedded in the EIA process through a voluntary process which not only has shed light on potentially “surprise” situations but has added value to an organization’s bottom line. It will conclude by making a number of recommendations, both as regards regulations in Québec and Canada.
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: environmental impact assessment, Sustainability, Regulatory, International Best Practice, social impact assessment, Canada and Quebec, Voluntary Agreements
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Summary: When RFQ's are received they often contain detailed technical specifications which are at odds with the supplier's approach to design. Both the client and end user have their experiences to draw upon.
The question is who is right, the client and his consultant, the supplier or both!
This paper looks at some of the fundamental variations that often occur in the mechanical design of drum hoists.
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Drum Hoist Design, Hoists
Year: 2011
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Summary: The modified stability graph method is a popular
tool which can provide an estimate of anticipated
stope stability. The rock stress factor is one of
the input parameters used in the modified
stability graph method and is a penalty factor
based on the mining-induced stress conditions
along the face under evaluation. The new rock
stress factor proposed by the Authors corrects a
deficiency in the method. The new rock stress
factor addresses the detrimental effects of a low-
stress...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Rory Hughes, Hani Mitri, Benny Zhang
Keywords: Rock mechanics, Stope stability, empirical methods, Narrow vein mining
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Summary: Field tests and numerical flow analysis have been conducted to investigate the characteristics of flow and physical chemistry of acid mine drainage(AMD) in the Hwangji-Yuchang settling pond in south Korea. pH and ferrous concentration of AMD flowed in the settling pond is 6.79 and 25.5 mg/l, respectively. As a results, we found that the ferrous oxidation reacted strongly around the inlet of the pond and the distributions of physicochemical properties is depended on flow characteristics and...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Dong-Kil Lee, Sang-Woo Ji, Gil-Jae Yim, Young-Wook Cheong
Keywords: settling pond, ferrous, Acid mine drainage
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Summary: The Cementation group and their Chilean partner Terraservice were involved in the mine rescue program at the San Jose mine in Chile. The Terraservice group was the first drilling contractor to break a hole through to confirm that the workers were alive. Terracem(a partnership company between Cementation and Terraservice) is a Chilean based raise boring contractor with shop facilities in Copaipo. The group mobilized a Strata 950 raise bore machine immediately to carry out the Plan A drilling...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
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Summary: ABSTRACT: Backfilling has become an integral process in underground mining operations, with varying cost-effective forms of application. This study is a part of an overall investigation into the backfill practices at Copper Cliff North Mine (CCNM). The mine is well-diversified in terms of backfill methodologies and practices. The mine employs different fill methods such as cemented and un-cemented rock fill, slag fill, and cemented hydraulic fill (or a combination of them) in order to fill...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Ike Isagon, Mehdi Razavi, Steve Townend
Keywords: cemented and un-cemented rock fill, cemented hydraulic fill, Backfilling, Underground mining, slag fill
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Summary: Optimizing grindability at the Tata Steel IJmuiden pellet plant The Tata steel pellet plant in IJmuiden produces up to 5.0 Mtpa of olivine fluxed acid pellets. The pellet plant is part of the IJmuiden integrated steel works, and produces solely for the two Ijmuiden blast furnaces. Pellets are being made from more than 5 different pellet feeds at a time, each pellet feed having its own grindability. The mix of pellet feeds is being dry grinded in a closed circuit ball mill. The grinding...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Maartje Oorsprong, Jason Tijmensen, Emile Scheepers
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Summary: McArthur River Operation is the world’s largest high grade uranium deposit and is located in Northern Saskatchewan. McArthur River came into production in December 1999 with a number of innovative technologies to allow for mining of a high grade uranium deposit in challenging geotechnical and hydrological conditions. The raisebore mining method has been supplemented by the continued development of a boxhole mining technique to allow for mining of mineralization that cannot be accessed with...
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Summary: The Green Mining Initiative was launched in 2009 to spur innovation in the mining sector and improve its environmental performance. The initiative takes a holistic approach looking at the entire mining life cycle, from design to closure and beyond, through four innovation and research pillars: Footprint Reduction, Innovation in Waste Management, Mine Closure and Rehabilitation, and Ecosystem Risk Management.
To enhance the impact of the initiative and foster innovation across Canada, Natural...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
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Summary: The power required to operate a ventilation system underground accounts for almost 60% of a mine’s energy requirements. In an effort to reduce energy consumption, reduce energy costs and improve air quality, Ventilation-On-Demand Control Systems utilizing five controls strategies have been commissioned at Vale's Coleman Mine.

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Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Trang Tran
Keywords: ventilaton-on-demand
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Summary: Canada has long since been a place that has led the world in mining development, in a safe, clean, and sustainable manner. As the Canadian mining industry continues to evolve, so too does the need for continued transparency and understanding between industry and the public. This has led to the integration of corporate social responsibility (CSR) philosophy in corporate governance, policy, and standards. The proposed paper will provide a general overview of CSR concept, factors for increased...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
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Summary: Mining-related activities have been known to create a challenging operating environment for mining companies located in close proximity to communities. Issues such as noise, vibrations from mining operations, land use and emissions are often a concern for community residents. In order to develop good community relationships it is necessary to take a pro-active approach. This paper documents this approach and also deals with the social implications for Vale associated with mining activities in...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Steven Townend
Keywords: community, Social implications, Mining activity
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Summary: The underground hard rock mining industry has had little change since the mobile equipment era began in the 1970s. Equipment has become larger and faster but has not kept pace with the following challenges: Improvements in Safe Production, Increasing demand for metals, Environmental improvements, Decreasing grades, Increasing depth of mining, More metal from underground vs. surface mining, and Energy and green house gas awareness. We are on the cusp of a new mining era and must rethink how...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Innovation
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Summary: Minnesota’s Mesabi Iron Range is the main source of United States' and Canada's domestic iron ore and has been supplying iron ore since 1892. How much iron ore is left? How much is needed? Currently all of the iron ore mined in Minnesota is magnetic taconite from the Mesabi Iron Range, which is concentrated and shipped as iron ore pellets. This presentation will identify the remaining iron ore reserves in Minnesota, and the magnetic taconite resources available to sustain North America’s...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Peter Clevenstine
Keywords: Iron Ore, Resources, Reserves
Year: 2011
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Summary: Poor safety performance is not a mine, work group, company or regional problem. It’s a problem affecting the global minerals industry. Even the top performers still have accidents rate below tolerable levels for the community. Disasters serve as reminders of unacceptable mining risk, suggesting a need for step change across the industry. Several global, multi-company initiatives that impact at the face level will be presented and discussed as potential opportunities for mines and mining...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Year: 2011
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Summary: Kemess Mine will be closing in early 2011, and final reclamation works began during operations in 2008. The focus of reclamation during mine operations has been on the inactive areas of the tailings dam, waste rock dumps, and expended borrow areas. The general reclamation strategy for the Kemess Mine site marries long-term erosion control with successional reclamation principles. For disturbed areas, this requires application of appropriate growth media, proper preparation of surfaces, and...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Jennifer McConnachie, Carolyn Johns, Jordan Evans
Keywords: Reclamation, native seed, Waste rock, Tailings
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Summary: New Millennium Capital Corp. (NML.V) is an exploration company focusing on iron ore in the Schefferville area located in the Northern regions of Quebec and Labrador, a historical iron ore producing area. NML controls the Millennium Iron Range, one of the world’s largest undeveloped magnetite deposits containing over 9.0 billion tonnes of NI 43-101 certified resources. NML with its strategic partner Tata Steel is currently developing the Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) Project which is due to start...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Robert Martin, Bish Chanda
Keywords: Canadian iron ore project, new iron ore producer, Iron Ore, new projects in development
Year: 2011
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Summary: The following abstract is a poor translation and has to be revised.
In spring 2011, Osisko Mining Corporation is starting the production of the Canadian Malartic deposit, which becomes the largest open-pit gold mine in Canada. To realize this project, the company had to relocate a neighborhood of 206 houses and to rebuild 6 new institutional buildings. Such a project began in 2006 and the relocation has been completed in 2009. To succeed an operation of such a social importance, the company...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Hélène Thibault, Julien Rivard
Keywords: Mine à ciel ouvert, Déménagement de maisons, Communication, Bâtiments institutionnels, Appui de la communauté, Osisko, Nouveau quartier, Zone urbaine, Mine à ciel ouvert, Malartic
Year: 2011
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Summary: This paper summarizes current underhand paste backfill mining as applied to Goldcorp Inc’s Red Lake Mine, Newcrest Mining Ltd’s Kencana Mine and the Lanfranchi Nickel Mine.

Red Lake utilises a 6 m wide undercut with a 2 MPa unconfined strength paste in order to selectively mine their high grade, high-stress orebody. Kencana’s orebody is located in a poor rock mass environment. An 8 m wide, 2 MPa unconfined strength paste sill allows a safe working condition for their high grade orebody. ...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Paul B Hughes, Rimas Pakalnis, Grant Corey, Peter Lawrence, Michael Hitch
Year: 2011
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Summary: Mining projects depend on the amount and quality of the mineral reserves, which in turn depend on the amount and quality of the mineral resources. Only Measured and Indicated Resources may be converted to mineral reserves and Inferred Resources may not, with certain exceptions, be used in economic studies. Responsibility for the estimation of mineral resources rests with the Qualified Person and there is a wealth of literature, text books and case studies to guide the QP. Responsibility for...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Mineral resources, Qualified Person, Project viability, Classification, Judgement, Due diligence
Year: 2011
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Summary: Real-time monitoring and control of fatigue events is being implemented at Freeport McMoRan open pit mines utilizing the Seeing Machines DSS technology. Evaluation and testing of the technology showed that it works for most operators, most of the time though it is not a silver bullet to the fatigue problem. Additionally, the system is reactive, meaning it only measures events as they are happening, rather than predicting fatigue levels. Open pit truck drivers working a typical 12-hour...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Fatigue, Open pit, DSS, circadian, Haul Truck, Seeing Machines, Monitoring
Year: 2011
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Summary: Rockbursts are a major hazard in deep hard rock underground mining and tunneling. To date a significant number of rockbursts still defy conventional explanations.

A review of rockburst case histories in the literature has shown that pillars and tabular excavations under shear loading are prone to rockbursting in situations where they are least expected under conventional knowledge of rockburst causes. Despite the evidence of the effects of shear loading on underground infrastructure, and...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Fidelis Tawiah Suorineni, Peter K. Kaiser, Joseph Juma Mgumbwa, Reginald Dhelda Mfanga
Keywords: Tabular excavatios, Pillars, Shear loading, Rockbursts, Numerical modelling, Analytical solution
Year: 2011
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Summary: Québec Lithium is currently developing the first North American source of Lithium. This metal is increasingly in demand to supply the need of rechargeable batteries, hybrid and electric cars and is an integral part of a new green and sustainable economy.
From its world class deposit located between Amos and Val d’Or in Quebec, Québec Lithium is planning to produce annually 20 million kg of battery-grade Lithium Carbonate (20% of the current world production), starting from the end of 2012. ...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Charles A Taschereau
Keywords: Lithium
Year: 2011
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Summary: Many technologies have been adopted over the last half century for the haulage of material from open pit mining operations. Some of the technologies utilized include rail, off-highway trucks, conveyors, and slurry pipelines - each having its unique application and benefits. Over time, truck haulage has become the primary means of surface mine material movement, though in the past it has been plagued by problems of tire shortages, high diesel fuel costs, labour shortages, and carbon...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Change, IPCC, Haulage
Year: 2011
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Summary: Abstract

High stresses conditions in weak rock masses lead to large deformation and breakdown of the rock material, while stress release events in hard rock mines can lead to sudden and usually violent rock failure. Typical support system combine different reinforcement and support mechanisms to provide the required convergence control and retainement, but results are often mitigated by failure of surface liners, shotcrete and tendons. As well, different types of stress release events lead...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Francois Charette, Charlie C. Li
Keywords: weak rock, Rock support, Rock bolt, dynamic conditions
Year: 2011
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Summary: Pumpable, two-component resins for anchoring rock bolts provides significant advantages over traditional cartridge resin and cement grout systems where fast and easily adaptable support is required for difficult ground conditions.

Cartridge resin anchoring with rock bolts is often ineffective in oversized, fractured and washed-out holes. Cement grouting of cable bolts is frequently plagued with quality assurance and quality control issues related to the grouting process. Installation of...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Rick McClellan, Chris Pritchard
Keywords: Resin, Anchoring, Rockbolt, Cable bolt, Xstrata, adaptable, Pumpable, Minova, Injection, Nickel Rim South Mine
Year: 2011
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Summary: The Kittila mine is Agnico-Eagle’s first producing mine outside of Canada. Located above the Arctic Circle, approximately 900km north of Helsinki in Finland, the Kittila mine produces 3000 tpd from a combination of open pit and underground operations. This is also the first deposit where Agnico is implementing technology to process refractory ores. This paper discusses the project development and merging of cultures as Agnico-Eagle strives towards its’ goal of Safe Production. In an area of...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Year: 2011
Text
Summary: The rate of new mineral discoveries in Canada has been declining in the last two decades, mainly as a result of maturing of known mineral districts and the need to explore for deeper or increasingly remote mineral resources. In response to these challenges and to stagnating investments in mining-related R&D, a group of 15 Industry partners, supported by PDAC and Natural Resources Canada, established in 2010 the Exploration Innovation Consortium (EIC). This Consortium seeks to promote the...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Richard Tosdal
Keywords: Innovation
Year: 2011
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Summary: Golden Star Resources started mining in Africa after being a development company in 1999. At the time, the approach to local assistance was through "alternative livelihood" programs and the donation of infrastructure to local communities. This was initially successful with local community support. However, with time and on reviewing the implemented projects, it became evident that the success was limited and many if the projects were either poorly used or in disrepair.

Through a review of...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Elaine Kwami, Mark Thorpe
Keywords: Social responsibility, alternative livelihoods, CSR, developing world, economic development
Year: 2011
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Summary: Mining has a record of achievement in developing and adopting new technology to facilitate the extraction of increasingly challenging resources. Certainly larger, or more capable, mining equipment has allowed mining companies to mine mineral deposits at lower unit costs; however, there has also been the advent of computerized systems that aid in the management and tracking of mining operations. Unfortunately, the latter computerized systems have not always had the success anticipated with...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Keywords: Mine management, Technology, transparency, change management, Implementation
Year: 2011
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Summary: Shovel bucket blast fragmentation analysis is an alternative way to assess blast performance and its effects on downstream mining processes. A camera is installed on the boom of cable shovels, and the stick of hydraulic shovels. Images are captured automatically as the shovel digs, and are processed to acquire rock size information. The automatic data acquisition makes this method safe to use with minimal manual labour. It also allows for a large set of sample data to be captured from...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Shahram Tafazoli
Keywords: Fragmentation, Shovel, Bucket, Particle size, Mine Optimization, Dipper, Blast, Distribution
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Summary: At the Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNRL) Horizon Mine
they use Wenco International Mining Systems Ltd (Wenco) Fleet
Management System to monitor and control their production
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and raising dispatcher awareness and control.

Amongst the broad productivity goals CNRL wanted to achieve
with help from the system, was a very specific need to blend ore
at the truck level.

CNRL uses 25m x 25m block geological model...
Proceedings: CIM Montreal 2011
Author(s): Glen Trainor, Loyd Wheating
Keywords: fleet management, Efficiency, Ore Blending, GPS, Dispatching, Technology, Productivity, Oil sands
Year: 2011