Newmont Mining has laid out plans for some major new gold mines in the Kitikmeot region of Nunavut.
The company has been working at its Hope Bay property near Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, for years to prepare the Doris North gold deposit for production.
Now Newmont is proposing a ‘Phase 2’ for the property which would see the company mine two other open-pit sites south of Doris North. This would process millions of tonnes of ore every year for 15 years.
The expansion would be major, requiring new airstrips and all-weather roads. It would also generate an estimated 25 million tonnes of tailings.
The new mines would employ hundreds of people and the company said it will renegotiate a benefits agreement with the Kitikmeot Inuit Association.
The ambitious plan is now before the Nunavut Impact Review Board for screening.
"We have to look at how this mine and these mining plans would interact with or impact on the environment and the people in the region. So we need to understand the cumulative effects of this project, in relation to Doris North, and in relation to the region," said Ryan Barry, the review board’s executive director.
The Nunavut Impact Review Board screenings take 45 days on average, after which the board can recommend a full public review of the project.
For now, Newmont's proposal is up on the board’s online registry and the board is looking for public comment.
Newmont Mining is one of the biggest gold mining corporations in the world and is based in Denver, Colo.