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Canada to Spend C$2.2 Billion on Mine Remediation

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The indigenous relations minister said earlier this week that Canada will spend C$2.2 billion (US$1.66 billion) over 15 years on remediation for eight abandoned mines in the Yukon and the Northwest Territories.

Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relation, made the announcement.

The projects identified for remediation work are the Faro, United Keno Hill, Mount Nansen, Ketza River, and Clinton Creek mines in the Yukon; and the Giant, Cantung, and Great Bear Lake mines in the Northwest Territories. The Great Bear Lake project consists of multiple smaller sites in close proximity to each other.

The government said remediation is expected to be complete at seven of the eight mine sites once 15 years is up but will still require ongoing care and maintenance.

In a news release, the government highlighted some the issues at the mines:

  • The Giant Mine was one of the longest-operating gold mines in Canada. The Government of Canada assumed responsibility for the site when the owners went bankrupt.
  • The Clinton Creek Mine is an abandoned asbestos mine located approximately 100 km northwest of Dawson City, Yukon.
  • The Faro Mine was once the largest open pit lead-zinc mine in the world. It is a large site, spanning 25 sq. km – an area roughly the size of Victoria, British Columbia.

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