Despite concerns raised by some residents, most people living on Long Lake support a new plan to tackle contamination from an old gold mine, according to the head of a stewardship group.
“You can’t satisfy everybody 100 per cent of the time,” said Scott Darling, chair of the Long Lake Stewardship Committee. “But our position is this is the best plan we have seen in close to 10 years for getting the problem solved, and the problem is the arsenic in the lake.”
A cleanup and tailings-containment strategy put forward in 2017 by the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines was met with more resistance, he said, as it would have resulted in a high volume of truck traffic on area roads. The ministry went back to the drawing board, however, considering four alternatives to the original plan.
Option 4, which would source aggregate from two nearby pits (one in Atikameksheng First Nation and another created near the project site), is now being put forward as the preferred strategy.
This approach, according to ENDM, would reduce haulage on residential roads by as much as 89 per cent, while providing significant economic benefits to Atikameksheng.
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