Caribou concerns dominate hearing on Nunavut mine extension – by Emma Tranter (CBC News North – September 18, 2023)

‘The value of Qamanirjuaq herd to Kivalliq Inuit cannot be underestimated’: NTI

The first few days of a final public hearing on a Nunavut mine’s proposal to extend its project heard repeated concerns about how those changes would affect caribou.

The answer to those concerns, for the most part, is unknown. That’s because the project includes a proposal to create a wind farm to power the mine, the first of its kind in Nunavut. Qamanirjuaq caribou in the Kivalliq, as hunters speaking at the hearing pointed out, have never encountered wind turbines.

Agnico Eagle’s Meliadine gold mine, which is about 25 kilometres north of Rankin Inlet, wants to build 11 wind turbines and extend the mine’s life until 2043. The Nunavut Impact Review Board is in the midst of holding a final public hearing on the proposal, which includes technical meetings and a community roundtable, at the Singiituq Complex in Rankin Inlet this week.

Noel Kaludjak, a representative from the Kangigliniq Hunters and Trappers Organization, said the HTO does not support the wind farm in its proposed location because it is too close to caribou calving grounds.

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