Communities resist Baffinland and Ottawa’s push for public hearings – by Thomas Rohner (CBC News North – August 6, 2020)

Baffinland Iron Mines Corporation says if a Nunavut regulator further delays its Mary River Mine expansion it would cause “extreme prejudice” against the company and be a “breach of procedural fairness,” according to documents filed on the Nunavut Impact Review Board’s public registry.

The board recently released a suggested schedule of meetings over the next three months to address the company’s Phase 2, which includes using rail lines to transport ore within Baffin Island.

The mine is about 100 kilometres from Milne Inlet on north Baffin Island. Those meetings, which have been suspended since March due to COVID-19, must occur before a public hearing can happen.

But if the board — which assesses the impact of mining activity in Nunavut — goes ahead with its proposed schedule, it would do so against the wishes of the mayors and hunters of the five impacted Nunavut communities.

“Baffinland will suffer prejudice if the board further delays,” CEO Brian Penney swore in an affidavit dated Aug. 4.

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