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What Diavik’s impending closure could mean for Yellowknife – Cabin Radio

April 26, 2022

As Rio Tinto plans to close the Diavik diamond mine, the company says it’s considering the impact on communities across the NWT. Yellowknife is expected to feel the greatest effects.

Diavik – the second mine to open in the NWT, beginning operations in 2003 – is set to close in 2025. Representatives from Rio Tinto, which owns and operates the mine, told city councillors on Monday that could have direct impacts on employment, population levels, and revenue for many communities in the territory, particularly Yellowknife.

The mine, on an island in Lac de Gras roughly 300 km northeast of Yellowknife, is one of the largest employers in the territory. According to Rio Tinto, Diavik provides jobs for about 1,100 people, of whom 486 are northerners. The mine contributes nearly 10 percent of the NWT’s GDP, spending a reported $9.3 billion in the North since 2000.

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