Liberal candidate Tammy Cook-Searson says both levels of government should help clean up the abandoned Gunnar mine.
The Liberal candidate in Saskatchewan’s vast northern riding says both the federal and provincial governments should be responsible for cleaning up the abandoned Gunnar uranium mine and other, similar sites in the region.
That aligns with the view of many Saskatchewan politicians, but breaks with the federal Liberals’ position that the province should put up virtually all of the cash for the massively over-budget project, which is currently estimated to cost $280 million.
“I think that both levels of government need to sit down and figure out what the fair share is. Negotiate it,” Tammy Cook-Searson said of the largest environmental remediation project in Saskatchewan history, which was originally expected to cost just $24.6 million.
Perched on a rocky point jutting into Lake Athabasca, what was once the world’s largest uranium mine ran for eight years before it was abandoned in 1963. Gunnar Mining Ltd., which operated the facility, was dissolved and the mine sat untouched for decades.
In 2006, the federal and provincial governments agreed to split the bill for cleaning it up, but costs mounted and Ottawa dug in its heels. Late last year, Saskatchewan filed a lawsuit aimed at getting a judge to force the federal government to pay more than the $12.3 million to which it has committed.
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