Canada is the world’s largest zinc producer. Canada's zinc production in 2003 was pegged at 744,037t. Most of Canada’s base metals are hosted by massive sulphide sources (e.g. the Sudbury complex) as well as porphyry deposits (e.g. the Highlands Valley Porphyry). Zinc mines have been found in every province and territory with the exception of Alberta and Prince Edward Island.
Xstrata is a world leading zinc producer; it also produces significant amounts of copper from four lead – zinc – silver mining operations in New Brunswick and Quebec.
Teck Cominco is one of the world’s largest zinc producers. Teck Cominco operates several base metal mines across Canada, including the world’s most northerly mine, Polaris, at Little Cornwallis Island, Nunavut. The Polaris mine (in which Teck Corp. has a 22.5% interest) has identified additional ore reserves, which may extend the life of mine. At the end of 1998, Polaris had proven and probable reserves estimated at 3 Mt grading at 12.8% zinc and 3.3% lead.
Boliden acquired the Myra Falls underground zinc copper mines on Vancouver Island, British Colombia in 1998. The mine has estimated proven and probable reserves of over 6.7 Mt grading at an average of 7.7% zinc, 1.5% copper, 0.4 % lead, 1.4 g/t gold and 35 g/t silver.
The Howards Pass zinc deposit located on the border between the Yukon and Nunavut has been described as one of the largest undeveloped zinc deposits in the world. Copper Ridge Explorations Inc. are currently evaluating the deposit.