Businesses, prospectors and academics now have more support for innovative projects in the mining sector that attract investment, grow Nova Scotia’s economy and creates jobs, especially in rural areas. As part of Budget 2019-20, the province is increasing the Mineral Resources Development Fund by $800,000 to a total of $1.5 million. Energy and Mines Minister Derek Mombourquette opened the fund to applications today, April 9. “Mining is a globally competitive sector that creates career opportunities for our young people, while generating revenue for programs and services that benefit all Nova Scotians,” said Mr. Mombourquette. “These investments make connections and develop new ideas that help our companies stay at the forefront of technology and environmental protection.” Saint Mary’s University professor Jacob Hanley and PhD student Kevin Neyedley received $47,500 from the fund in 2018. They are working on research and gathering geological information about how strategic minerals formed. This will help identify where deposits may be located and then extracted with minimal environmental impact. “It is vitally important for Nova Scotians to have access to the most current scientific knowledge, gathered using cutting edge research tools,” said Mr. Hanley. “Our research can help attract companies by reducing exploration costs for industry and reduce the impact that grass-roots exploration has on the environment through narrowing the size of mineral deposit targets,” said Mr. Neyedley. Last year, the province supported 28 projects including mineral exploration programs, professional development, innovation, university research and training opportunities for young people. “Our investment in Nova Scotia can be directly attributed to efforts made by the province to support prospectors,” said Greg Collins, chief operating officer at Transition Metals, a mineral exploration company based in Sudbury, Ontario. “The fund has helped us generate some very encouraging results that could attract new investment and allow us to consider acquiring additional projects in Nova Scotia.” To apply or find out more about the fund, visit https://novascotia.ca/natr/meb/mrdp.asp .