When Rio Tinto’s Diavik diamond mine closes in 2025, it’s going to put a major dent in the finances of the Northwest Territories. The mine, now 100% owned by Rio Tinto after it acquired Dominion Diamond’s 40% share last year, following Dominion’s filing for insolvency protection in 2020, was Canada’s second diamond mine, with production starting in 2003.
Now, it is the first of the Northwest Territories’ three currently operating diamond mines to be scheduled for closure. Its impact — as an employer of over 1,000 workers and contractors, more than twice that of Gahcho Kué — will also be the biggest.
All of the N.W.T.’s diamond mines are aging. Arctic Canadian Diamond’s Ekati could close as soon as 2024 unless its Point Lake extension, expected to feed the operation until 2028, is approved. Gahcho Kué, owned by De Beers and Mountain Province Diamonds, is slated to run until 2028.
With natural resources making up 21% of the territory’s GDP (a proportion that was as high as 50% only a decade ago), a future without diamond mines is a bleak one to contemplate for the N.W.T.
For the rest of this article: https://www.northernminer.com/news/will-the-far-north-be-left-out-of-the-critical-minerals-rush/1003841115/