by Greg Klein | May 8, 2015
In a report released late May 8, the Nunavut Impact Review Board recommended rejection of a uranium mine application from AREVA Resources Canada and its joint venture partners. In its submission to Canada’s minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, the seven-person panel invited AREVA to resubmit its Kiggavik application once the company can provide a start date.
“AREVA stated at the outset of the NIRB’s final hearing that the world price of uranium made the project uneconomic at the present time,” the panel stated. “Further, AREVA could not provide a definite start date for the project.”
The company can return when they have a start date, when they are serious about getting this project off the ground.—The Baker Lake Hunters
and Trappers Organization
Among other concerns, the board cited a submission from the Baker Lake Hunters and Trappers Organization, which said the group “is not necessarily against Kiggavik. We just want to make sure that we have the best possible protection for our caribou and that mining is done responsibly … we do not want this proposal approved but still hanging over our heads for decades to come, not knowing what the future of our community will be. We would be sitting and waiting for decades totally powerless to control our own future. This would not be right…. The company can return when they have a start date, when they are serious about getting this project off the ground.”
On submitting its application last October, AREVA stated, “While uranium market conditions do not currently favour a construction decision, completing the environmental assessment would allow the project to move forward with the next steps when the market improves as expected.”
The French utility’s Canadian subsidiary holds a 64.8% stake in the project, near the southeastern Nunavut hamlet of Baker Lake, along with JCU (Canada) Exploration (33.5%) and DAEWOO Corp (1.7%).