Giant Mine Remediation Project One Step Closer to Implementation

Ottawa, Ontario (December 23, 2013) - The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, today announced that Ministers with jurisdiction related to the Giant Mine Remediation Project will consult the Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board on  measures proposed to mitigate significant adverse impacts on the environment.

"This decision reflects our support for the environmental assessment process and our interest in starting this important remediation work as soon as possible to ensure the safety of the site and the environment are protected," said Minister Valcourt. "As such, the consultation process should be concluded early in the new year to allow this important cleanup project to proceed to final regulatory approvals."

As part of its mandate, the review board had proposed the Project's approval subject to the imposition of 26 measures necessary to mitigate adverse impacts on the environment.  In examining the Report, the Responsible Ministers have considered whether the proposed remediation project would appropriately address any current or potential future environmental impacts at this site or adversely affect established or potential Aboriginal or Treaty rights.

The Environmental Assessment of the Project will now return to the Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board for discussion with Responsible Ministers' officials to address five issues that involve proposed modifications involving 9 of the 26 mitigation measures. The Responsible Ministers are currently seeking comments from potentially impacted Aboriginal groups on the proposed modifications.

Giant Mine is an abandoned gold mine near Yellowknife, NT, which operated from 1948 until 1999. The site is one of the highest priority contaminated sites within the federal property inventory and requires ongoing management.

For more information, please contact:

Minister's Office
Erica Meekes
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Bernard Valcourt
Media Relations
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada

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