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Gahcho Kué Mine recognized for Environmental and Social Responsibility

Press Release

21 Nov 2022

Gahcho Kué Mine is proud to receive the NWT MAX Award for Environmental and Social Responsibility, presented on Nov. 18 at the fourth Mining and Exploration Awards hosted by the NWT & Nunavut Chamber of Mines and the Government of the NWT.

The award was one of three in the category to recognize the historic and current contributions to environmental excellence and social performance by the Northwest Territories’ operating diamond mines, Gahcho Kué, Ekati and Diavik. In her remarks about the award, Hon. Caroline Wawzonek, Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment for the Government of the Northwest Territories, said that while the rest of the world is increasingly recognizing Environmental and Social Governance (ESG) as a business best-practice, it has long been the way each of the mines have done business in the north.

Lyndon Clark, General Manager of Gahcho Kué Mine, said: “We recognize the need to be strong and respectful partners with public and Indigenous governments, to care for the environment, and work to improve the lives of the people living in communities close to our operation. This approach was the foundation for Gahcho Kué and this vision has been brought to life with the mine’s Building Forever plan that has delivered tangible benefits to the NWT since it was adopted in 2020.”

In 2022 alone, Gahcho Kué Building Forever programs have delivered close to $700,000 in financial support for early childhood education initiatives, to help build a child development centre in Fort Resolution, fund scholarships, enable mental health programs, launch trades training for women, and build bundles of essentials for families of newborn children in the NWT. As well, the mine has pledged $9.5 million toward the Redknife River Bridge construction near Fort Simpson, part of a fish habitat restoration initiative. Construction on the bridge could begin in late 2023 and will take approximately three years to complete.

De Beers Group was also proud to donate a 0.9 carat Gahcho Kué rough diamond to a charity auction held during the awards gala. The diamond raised $4,600 of the $51,000 generated to support Yellowknife’s Adopt A Family program. In 2021, Adopt A Family supported 33 Yellowknife families, including 102 children, experiencing hardship during the Christmas season.

First awarded in 2017, the MAX Awards recognize northern individuals, businesses and organizations that have generated opportunities and demonstrated leadership in responsible and successful resource development.

This is the fourth MAX Award for Gahcho Kué or an individual or organization associated with the mine. In 2018, De Beers Canada/Gahcho Kué was recognized for economic contribution and Ni Hadi Xa, the collaborative environmental monitoring agency for the mine, received the Environmental and Social Responsibility Award. In 2019, Shayne Paul, Gahcho Kué’s senior mining manager, received the Indigenous Achievement MAX Award. The awards were not presented in 2020 or 2021.

The awards culminated the 50th anniversary Yellowknife Geoscience Forum, which was sponsored in part by Gahcho Kué Mine.

Gahcho Kué is located about 280 km northeast of Yellowknife. Opened in 2016, the mine is a joint venture between De Beers Group and Mountain Province Diamonds.

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