2nd final hearing set for Nunavut gold mine once rejected by review board

2nd final hearing set for Nunavut gold mine once rejected by review board

The Nunavut Impact Review Board will hold hearings in Cambridge Bay May 31 to June 3 to take a second look at Sabina Gold and Silver's proposed Back River project.

Last summer, the board recommended Sabina Gold and Silver Corp.'s Back River gold mine not proceed to the licensing stage over concerns about climate change and potential impacts to the Bathurst caribou herd.

That prompted the Nunavut government, the Kitikmeot Inuit Association and Sabina to ask the federal minister responsible to order that the project get a second look.

In January, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett agreed, calling it "premature" to conclude the effects of the mine would be unmanageable. She referred the project back to the board for further review.

NIRB has scheduled two days of technical hearings on May 31 and June 1 followed by a community roundtable June 2 and 3. Evening sessions will also be held to give people a chance to take part outside of the workday.

Sabina declined to comment on the upcoming hearings. 

The Back River property holds an estimated 3.4 million ounces of gold. The company estimates the mine could employ 900 people.

- June 16, 2016: Nunavut board rejects gold mine over concerns about caribou

- June 17, 2016: Sabina Gold & Silver asks Ottawa to hold off on Nunavut mine decision

- Sept. 1, 2016: GN, Inuit association ask for 2nd chance for Kitikmeot gold mine

- Jan 16, 2017: Sabina Back River gold mine proposal needs more study, Ottawa tells NIRB