Revised plan for mining Mary River iron – by Rose Ragsdale (North of 60 Mining News – June 2, 2023)

Six months after the Canadian government rejected a plan to double approved output from the Mary River iron mine on Nunavut’s Baffin Island, the mine’s operator, Baffinland Iron Mines Corp., is working to get the green light to move ahead with a different proposal.

The new plan, which the company calls a “Sustaining Operations Proposal,” surfaced in December, about a month after federal Northern Affairs Minister Daniel Vandal rejected the earlier plan Nov. 16 to expand operations and double approved shipping output from the mine to 12 million metric tons of iron ore annually.

Baffinland, owned by private equity firm Energy and Minerals Group and steel giant ArcelorMittal SA, had said the expansion was necessary to keep the Mary River operation viable. Without the federal government’s approval of its expansion plans, the company had indicated that it might have to close the mine and terminate the employment of more than 1,100 workers.

Baffinland’s latest proposal seeks to continue the mine’s current operations of trucking and shipping up to six million metric tons of iron ore per year, for which the company was first approved in 2018 and approved again in 2022.

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