The Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board (MVLWB) has granted De Beers an interim approval on its Extended Care and Maintenance and Water Management plans for its Snap Lake mine.
The mine, located in the Northwest Territories, was put on maintenance in December 2015 while De Beers evaluated market conditions. The Extended Care and Maintenance plan will now enable the preservation of the mine’s significant diamond resource, allowing for potential production in the future.
In order to begin closure of the mine, De Beers is planning to remove the structure’s underground workings and then flood the area responsibly. The company will minimize the flow of water into the receiving environment, significantly reducing the environmental impact of this operation.
“We are grateful to all the parties who participated in the review process, in particular the valuable inputs from our Aboriginal, business and government partners,” says Kim Truter, Chief Executive Officer of De Beers Canada. “We remain focused on preserving the significant diamond resource within the Snap Lake mine.”
The Snap Lake mine was first opened in 2008. It was the company’s first location outside of Africa, and the only Canadian mine to be situated completely underground. De Beers Canada still operates out of the Victor Mine in northern Ontario and Gahcho Kué in the Northwest Territories.