Canada’s federal government believes the Sabina Gold and Silver Corp.’s controversial Back River gold mine project should go ahead, Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett said last week in a letter to the Nunavut Impact Review Board.
This clears the way for the review board’s issuance of a project certificate to Sabina by Jan. 4, following a teleconference workshop with stakeholders they hope to hold on Thursday, Dec. 14.
And today, Sabina said in a statement that the Nunavut Water Board has started looking at the company’s Type A and Type B water license applications for the Back River project, and that they hope to get those licences by the end of March 2018.
“With a positive minister’s decision now in hand we are pleased to see that the licensing process has commenced, which will enable full development of the Back River project” said Bruce McLeod, Sabina’s president and CEO said.
Following a public hearing in 2016, the review board had originally recommended the Back River gold mine not be approved. That’s because they found the project’s potential environmental and socio-economic impacts, especially on the region’s fragile caribou population and the Indigenous people who hunt them on both sides of the Nunavut-Northwest Territories boundary, cannot be managed or mitigated.
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