NORTHWEST TERRITORIES – The federal government has approved renewal of the Diavik diamond mine water licence. The renewed licence was approved by the Minister of INDIAN AND NORTHERN AFFAIRS CANADA and covers a period of eight years. It takes effect Nov. 1, 2007, when the mines existing seven-year licence expires.
The WEKEEZHII LAND AND WATER BOARD (WLWB) recommended renewal of the licence to the Minister following an intensive, two-year public review process that included various technical and public hearings. Under the renewed licence, the board has substantially increased the environmental monitoring, reporting and management requirements of the operation, has revised discharge limits, and increased the numbers and types of ongoing approvals necessary each year.
The licence is the first of its kind issued by the WLWB, which assumed responsibility for Diaviks renewal application from the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board. The WLWB was established under the Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government Agreement.
The renewal of Diaviks water licence will add confidence to investor approval required for Diaviks next phase of mine development, which includes transitioning the Diavik mine into underground mining. That investment decision is expected later this fall.
The Diavik mine is a joint venture of RIO TINTO (60%) and ABER DIAMOND (40%). Further information is available at www.Diavik.ca.