Cliffs Natural Resources Temporarily Suspends its Chromite Project Environmental Assessment Activities Pending Resolution of

Cliffs Natural Resources Temporarily Suspends its Chromite Project 
Environmental Assessment Activities Pending Resolution of Various Issues 
CLEVELAND, June 12, 2013 /CNW/ - Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (NYSE: CLF) 
(Paris: CLF) announced today that its affiliate, Cliffs Chromite Ontario Inc., 
is temporarily suspending the environmental assessment activities for its 
Chromite Project in Ontario, Canada. The Company indicated that its decision 
to temporarily suspend these activities is due to delays related to the 
environment assessment process, land surface rights, and negotiations with the 
Province of Ontario. 
"While most aspects of the Chromite Project have advanced according to plan, 
temporarily suspending the environmental assessment work acknowledges that 
certain critical elements of the project's future are not solely within our 
control and require the active support and participation by other interested 
parties such as government agencies and impacted First Nation communities," 
said Bill Boor, senior vice president - global ferroalloys for Cliffs. "We 
remain excited about this project and its potential for Cliffs and Northern 
Ontario; however, given the current unresolved issues, we cannot and will not 
unilaterally move the process forward and must manage our resources 
appropriately." 
The Company cited that the following open issues are impeding the progress of 
the project's environmental assessment process, as well as the Feasibility 
Study evaluation: 


    --  Delayed approval of the Terms of Reference for the provincial
        Environmental Assessment (EA) process.
    --  Uncertainty regarding the federal EA process due to the current
        judicial challenge by a number of the impacted First Nations.
    --  Unresolved land surface rights issues following a February 2013
        Mining and Land Commissioner hearing.
    --  Unfinished agreements with the Government of Ontario that are
        critical to the project's economic viability.

"In a practical sense, we've taken the EA and other project work as far as 
possible without resolution of these issues," said Mr. Boor.  "Although we are 
temporarily suspending our EA activities, we will continue our work with the 
Government of Ontario and First Nation communities and look forward to 
restarting the work on the EA when we are collectively ready to make this 
project a reality."

As previously disclosed, Cliffs indicated that before it can advance the 
project, the Company must receive provincial and federal environmental 
assessment approvals, negotiate mutually acceptable agreements with impacted 
First Nation communities, work with governments to address the lack of 
infrastructure in the Ring of Fire and complete its commercial and technical 
feasibility studies.

About Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. is an 
international mining and natural resources company. A member of the S&P 500 
Index, the Company is a major global iron ore producer and a significant 
producer of high- and low-volatile metallurgical coal. Cliffs' strategy is to 
continually achieve greater scale and diversification in the mining industry 
through a focus on serving the world's largest and fastest growing steel 
markets. Driven by the core values of social, environmental and capital 
stewardship, Cliffs associates across the globe endeavor to provide all 
stakeholders operating and financial transparency.

The Company is organized through a global commercial group responsible for 
sales and delivery of Cliffs' products and a global operations group 
responsible for the production of the minerals the Company markets. Cliffs 
operates iron ore and coal mines in North America and an iron ore mining 
complex in Western Australia. In addition, Cliffs has a major chromite 
project, in the feasibility stage of development, located in Ontario, Canada.

News releases and other information on the Company are available on the 
Internet at: http://www.cliffsnaturalresources.com

Forward-Looking Statements This release contains forward-looking statements 
within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Although the Company 
believes that its forward-looking statements are based on reasonable 
assumptions, such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties relating 
to Cliffs' operations and business environment that are difficult to predict 
and may be beyond Cliffs' control. Such uncertainties and factors may cause 
actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by 
forward-looking statements for a variety of reasons including without 
limitation: uncertainty or weaknesses in global economic conditions, including 
downward pressure on prices, reduced market demand and any slowing of the 
economic growth rate in China; trends affecting our financial condition, 
results of operations or future prospects, particularly the continued 
volatility of iron ore and coal prices; our ability to successfully integrate 
acquired companies into our operations and achieve post-acquisition synergies, 
including without limitation, Cliffs Quebec Iron Mining Limited (formerly 
Consolidated Thompson Iron Mining Limited); our ability to successfully 
identify and consummate any strategic investments and complete planned 
divestitures; the outcome of any contractual disputes with our customers, 
joint venture partners or significant energy, material or service providers or 
any other litigation or arbitration; the ability of our customers and joint 
venture partners to meet their obligations to us on a timely basis or at all; 
our ability to reach agreement with our iron ore customers regarding 
modifications to sales contract pricing escalation provisions to reflect a 
shorter-term or spot-based pricing mechanism; the impact of price-adjustment 
factors on our sales contracts; changes in sales volume or mix; our actual 
economic iron ore and coal reserves or reductions in current mineral 
estimates, including whether any mineralized material qualifies as a reserve; 
the impact of our customers using other methods to produce steel or reducing 
their steel production; events or circumstances that could impair or adversely 
impact the viability of a mine and the carrying value of associated assets; 
the results of prefeasibility and feasibility studies in relation to projects; 
impacts of existing and increasing governmental regulation and related costs 
and liabilities, including failure to receive or maintain required operating 
and environmental permits, approvals, modifications or other authorization of, 
or from, any governmental or regulatory entity and costs related to 
implementing improvements to ensure compliance with regulatory changes; our 
ability to cost effectively achieve planned production rates or levels; 
uncertainties associated with natural disasters, weather conditions, 
unanticipated geological conditions, supply or price of energy, equipment 
failures and other unexpected events; adverse changes in currency values, 
currency exchange rates, interest rates and tax laws; availability of capital 
and our ability to maintain adequate liquidity and successfully implement our 
financing plans; our ability to maintain appropriate relations with unions and 
employees and enter into or renew collective bargaining agreements on 
satisfactory terms; risks related to international operations; availability of 
capital equipment and component parts; the potential existence of significant 
deficiencies or material weakness in our internal control over financial 
reporting; problems or uncertainties with productivity, tons mined, 
transportation, mine-closure obligations, environmental liabilities, 
employee-benefit costs and other risks of the mining industry; and other 
factors and risks that are set forth in the Company's most recently filed 
reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The information contained 
herein speaks as of the date of this release and may be superseded by 
subsequent events. Except as may be required by applicable securities laws, we 
do not undertake any obligation to revise or update any forward-looking 
statements contained in this release.

Jessica Moran, Director, Investor Relations, (216) 694-6532; Patricia Persico, 
Director, Global Communications, (216) 694-5316

http://www.cliffsnr.com

SOURCE: Cliffs Natural Resources Inc.

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CO: Cliffs Natural Resources Inc.
ST: Ontario

-0- Jun/12/2013 10:01 GMT