Niobec Mine Expansion Project - Public Comments Invited

OTTAWA, Jan. 2, 2013 /CNW/ - As part of the strengthened and modernized Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012 (CEAA 2012) put in place to support the government's Responsible Resource Development Initiative, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency has determined that a federal environmental assessment is required for the proposed Niobec Mine Expansion Project located north of Saguenay in Quebec. The Agency invites the public to comment on which aspects of the environment may be affected by this project and what should be examined during the environmental assessment.

The public can review and comment on the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Guidelines, a document that identifies the potential environmental effects to be taken into consideration and the information and analysis that needs to be included in the proponent's EIS.

Mine Niobec, the proponent, proposes to substantially increase ore production at the Niobec mine, located in Saint-Honoré, in the Saguenay region, by changing its underground mining method. This would increase the ore production capacity from 2.2 to 10 million tonnes per year and triple the annual production of ferroniobium. The proposed project would have a 40-year life span and would include the construction of a new industrial complex with facilities to handle the ore treatment and the disposal of additional volume of tailings.

Written comments must be submitted by February 1, 2013 to:

Niobec Mine Expansion Project Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
901-1550, d'Estimauville Avenue
Québec  QC  G1J 0C1
Telephone: 418-649-6444
Fax: 418-649-6443
MineNiobecMine@ceaa-acee.gc.ca

To view the draft EIS Guidelines or for more information, visit the Agency's website at www.ceaa-acee.gc.ca registry reference number 80011). All comments received will be considered public.

Copies of the draft EIS Guidelines are also available for viewing at the following locations:

Pekuakamiulnuatsh Takuhikan
1671 Ouiatchouan Street
Mashteuiatsh QC 
Municipal Building
3611 Martel Boul.
St-Honoré QC
Chicoutimi Municipal Library
155 Racine Street East
Chicoutimi QC
 

Consistent with the transparency and public engagement elements of CEAA 2012, this is the second of four opportunities for Canadians to comment on this project. Following this comment period, the Agency will finalize and issue the EIS Guidelines to the proponent. An application period for participant funding and a future public comment period related to the EIS will be announced later.

Projects subject to CEAA 2012 are assessed using a science-based approach.  If the project is permitted to proceed to the next phase, it will continue to be subject to Canada's strong environmental laws, rigorous enforcement and follow-up, and increased fines.

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency administers the federal environmental assessment process, which identifies the environmental effects of proposed projects and measures to address those effects, in support of sustainable development.

SOURCE: Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

For further information:

For more information, media may contact: 

Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
Céline Legault
Communications Advisor
Tel.: 613-957-0278