The HOPE BAY PROJECT’s Doris North mine site is a fully permitted underground gold mine about 125km southwest of Cambridge Bay on the mainland. The Hope Bay greenstone belt has been explored since 1965. Within this greenstone belt, over 850Km of drilling has occurred since 1965. Most of the drilling has been focused around Doris, Madrid and Boston.
This project has changed ownership many times over the years. The Doris North mine site, was originally developed by Newmont Mining’s subsidiary Hope Bay Mining Ltd, which was assigned to TMAC Resources Inc. in 2012. Further exploration of the Hope Bay Green Belt will continue to the south in Doris Central, Windy Lake and Boston.
When the Inuit Owned Land was selected for the Nunavut Agreement, Inuit knew that the Hope Bay Area was highly prospective for mineral development. A 120 Km length of surface lands that include some mineral rights were selected in the area. The brown areas in the map below are surface lands owned by KIA. BB-56, 57, 58, and 60 are included in our Framework Agreement with TMAC for the Hope Bay Project.
The Hope Bay Greenstone Belt is unique because it demonstrates the capacity to hold several mining operations across the belt in different stages of development, that are operated by one company.
This greenstone belt includes a permitted mine at Doris North, several advanced exploration targets such as Madrid North and South, and Boston Camp which has preliminary mine plans developed, and many other identified high quality exploration targets. TMAC has rights to all the minerals in this area. Once an operating mine is established, the efficiencies of belt-wide exploration can increase.
The KIA has successfully resolved fourteen technical issues that were brought forward to the NIRB and NWB and the Doris North mine is expected to go into production in 2017.
On the Map you can see the location of some of the highest priority development sites in the belt: Doris, Madrid and Boston.
KIA and TMAC have signed a comprehensive Framework Agreement for land access compensation and an Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreement (IIBA).
The IIBA addresses Inuit interests in the areas of employment, contracting, and training in relation to the Hope Bay Project as a whole through its entire life span.
Under the IIBA, an Inuit Environmental Advisory Committee (IEAC) has been established with TMAC which complements KIA’s current environmental activities in the Department of Lands and Environment. The IEAC allows for the local community to have input directly to TMAC on environmental concerns.
Through the IIBA Implementation Committee with KIA and TMAC representatives, measures of employment, business development, and training are being developed which fulfills socio-economic obligations under the Nunavut Agreement.
The KIA receives monetary compensation through a variety of agreements. These being direct compensation through the Framework Agreement and IIBA for land access, quarry materials and water usage. KIA also receives royalties from gold production plus shareholdings in TMAC.
Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated (NTI) also gets a royalty on profit under its Mineral Rights Agreement with TMAC Resources Inc. All of this creates a substantial benefit for Inuit in the region.
The JERICHO DIAMOND MINE was the first mine in the territory since the inception of Nunavut and represented a significant economic opportunity for the region. Located on both Crown and Inuit Owned Lands, the mine is near Contwoyto Lake, about 260km southeast of Kugluktuk. The project began operations in early 2006. Unfortunately, the mine was transitioned to a care and maintenance operation in late 2007 due to financial difficulties.
Shear Diamonds Ltd. has taken over ownership of operations as of August 2010. Their current activities include evaluating the potential for economic concentrations of diamonds. However, in 2012 Shear left the Jericho site and in 2013 INAC’s Contaminated Sites Division began conducting annual environmental protection activities.
The IZOK LAKE BASE METAL PROJECT is a base metal project located about 250km southeast of Kugluktuk. The owner, MMG Canada is conducting exploration and baseline studies in the area to assess the viability of further development. There is currently no activity on IOL for this project.
The HIGH LAKE BASE METAL PROJECT is a base metal project located approximately 200km west of Kugluktuk. The owner, MMG Canada, is conducting exploration and baseline studies in the area to assess the viability of further development. There is currently no activity on IOL for this project.
The LUPIN GOLD MINE located near Contwoyto Lake was an operational gold mine from 1982 to 2005. Since 2005 the site had remained in care and maintenance. Current owner Elgin Mining Inc. is conducting exploration and baseline studies for the Lupin Gold Mine and ULU GOLD PROJECT, 160km to the north, in the area to assess the viability of further development to support reopening of the Lupin Gold Mine.
The HACKETT RIVER PROJECT is an exploration project located about 110km south of Bathurst Inlet. The project, owned by the Glencore Canada, is in the exploration stage for silver and zinc.
The BACK RIVER PROJECT is an exploration project located at Goose Lake about, 160km southeast of Bathurst Inlet. The project, owned by Sabina Gold & Silver Corp., is in the advanced stages of exploration for gold.
The project is nearing the end of its environmental review phase, having already completed their Environmental Impact Statement and Final Hearing with the Nunavut Impact Review Board. It is anticipated that the water licensing process through the Nunavut Water Board will be completed by early 2018.
Prior to beginning construction of the Back River Project, KIA and Sabina Gold & Silver Corp. will have signed an IIBA and several agreements to address components such as Inuit employment, environmental protection, and compensation for environmental and wildlife losses, as well as other several other agreements to ensure the highest benefit possible to Kitikmeot Inuit.