The more Baffinland Mining Corp.’s Mary River iron mine in north Baffin ramps up production, the fewer relative benefits will flow to Inuit, a new report concludes.
“The most important thing is that ramping up production in the short term will result to significant loss of benefits to Inuit in particular and the territory more generally,” said Trevor Taylor, the Iqaluit-based vice-president of conservation for Oceans North, which commissioned the report.
The report, prepared by John Loxley, an economist from the University of Manitoba, found that Inuit occupy “a very small share of the jobs at this mine” and the rapid expansion of the workforce will in all likelihood further reduce the Inuit share.
The report considers the eventual impact of Mary River ramping up production to 30 million tonnes of iron ore per year. That could lead to Inuit missing out on up to $1 billion in salaries, the report estimates.
To deal with this imbalance, the report suggests that compensation to Inuit organizations could be calculated as the difference between the financial benefits received by Inuit had employment targets been met and the financial benefits actually received.
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