Baffinland’s new commitments too little, too late, critics say – by David Venn (Nunatsiaq News – April 14, 2021)


Baffinland Iron Mines Corp. has a list of new commitments it has made to communities near its Mary River mine, should its proposed expansion be approved, but critics say it’s not enough.

The Ontario-based mining company wants to build a 110-kilometre railway from its Mary River mine to Milne Inlet, double its iron ore shipments through the Tallurutiup Imanga marine conservation area and add another dock at its port. That proposal is the subject of a Nunavut Impact Review Board hearing underway this week in Iqaluit.

Baffinland has committed to an independent audit of the dust spread by the mine’s operations, to direct how the company will address environmental concerns if its expansion gets the green light.

It would also cut the proposed number of ore carrier trips to 168 a year from its original proposal of 174, and it would ship between July 15 and October 31, with a contingency to Nov. 15 based on ice conditions and consultation with the Mittimatalik Hunters and Trappers Organization.

Among other commitments, the company is adding six new full-time positions in Arctic Bay, Clyde River, Igloolik and Sanirajak.

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