OPINION: Shining a little light on the Mary River process – by Ken Armstrong (Nunatsiaq News – November 26, 2019)


Ken Armstrong is the President of the NWT-Nunavut Chamber of Mines.

The current impasse that phase two of the Mary River project finds itself in is of great interest and also concern to investors and industry watchers. We’d like to shine some light on three aspects of this process.

First, there has been recent criticism of Baffinland Iron Mines Corp. for positioning several buildings and construction materials, needed for the phase two railway expansion, before approvals for the railway are in place.

Operating in the North is challenging, with remote projects relying on limited transportation infrastructure and seasonal shipping windows. For northern resource projects, it is not uncommon to pre-position equipment at or near a project site in advance of receiving required permits.

Pre-positioning equipment is permitted by regulatory authorities and land owners, and this practice should not be considered as presumptive, but rather as an additional project risk, borne by the proponent.

The company is not assuming the permit is a slam dunk. Rather, they are being optimistic in the future of their project, that their stakeholder engagement has been effective and sufficient, and that their resultant submissions to regulatory agencies are reasonably complete.

For the rest of this article: https://nunatsiaq.com/stories/article/shining-a-little-light-on-the-mary-river-process/