Saskatchewan

Diamond company De Beers keen on northwest Saskatchewan

The mining company De Beers is ready to spend millions of dollars looking for diamonds in northern Saskatchewan.

Kimberlite targets identified in northern parts of Saskatchewan

Rough diamonds from a mine in northern Ontario. (DeBeers)

The mining company De Beers is ready to spend millions of dollars looking for diamonds in northern Saskatchewan.

On Wednesday it was announced that De Beers had signed an agreement with CanAlaska — a company that has staked claims on kimberlite-style targets in the Northwestern Athabasca Basin, in the northwest corner of the province.

"These 75 circular targets fit all the geological and geophysical criteria of kimberlites," Peter Dasler, president of CanAlaska said in a news release. "The location of the targets within a thick sequence of crystal rocks and their clustering around major structural features, provides a compelling target for CanAlaska and De Beers."

Under the agreement De Beers could spend up to $20.4 million to develop the stake, which was estimated to cover some 17,400 hectares. The work would including air surveys and drilling of test samples.

According to the Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan the first discovery of kimberlite in Saskatchewan was made in 1988 in the Sturgeon Lake area. 

Diamonds are formed in the Earth's mantle. The kimberlitic magma picks up pieces of the diamondiferous mantle as it ascends from depth. It brings the rock carrying the diamonds up to or near the surface. 

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