YELLOWKNIFE (August 2, 2017)— The Northwest Territories is one step closer to developing mineral legislation that reflects the unique circumstances of the mineral sector in the North, and is seeking input from northerners into the development of a Minerals Resources Act.
The Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment (ITI) has begun public stakeholder engagements on the development of the Territory’s first homegrown mineral legislation, and has launched an interactive engagement tool to help solicit feedback.
Recognizing the significant role that mining and exploration has played in shaping the NWT’s economy, a discussion paper on the Mineral Resources Act, aimed at sparking conversation and gaining input, has been released and is available online. The nine focus areas of the engagement document were identified through extensive preliminary research and will help guide stakeholder and public feedback.
An interactive online engagement platform has been launched to collect valued public and stakeholder feedback, and in-person meetings and information sessions will also be held across the NWT beginning in late summer and fall 2017.
Feedback collected will help inform the development of a Bill designed to make the NWT mining sector more competitive, while respecting the rights and traditions of Indigenous peoples and the need for sustainable land use.
The GNWT encourages Indigenous governments and organizations, industry stakeholders, interest groups, and members of the public to have their say through ITI’s public engagement portal.
The development of the Mineral Resources Act (MRA) is a commitment under the Mandate of the Government of the Northwest Territories 2016-2019 and is a concrete step towards achieving the priority of improving coordination and effectiveness in resource management systems while recognizing traditional knowledge, land claims agreements and devolution.
“Mining and exploration directly or indirectly employs nearly one-in-10 NWT residents and generates nearly a billion in annual economic activity. It is our duty as a government to ensure this industry is governed with clear legislation designed to maximize the benefits of responsible resource development to ensure a strong future for this foundational industry. We have an opportunity to create a leading-edge Act to assure our competitiveness on the global stage for years to come.”
-Wally Schumann, Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment
- NWT mining is currently governed by the NWT Mining Regulations. This is mirrored from federal legislation passed down during Devolution.
- These regulations will be absorbed and altered as part of the proposed legislation
- The proposed legislation will be designed to govern:
- Mineral rights
- Benefits to residents (i.e. royalties)
- Reporting on mineral types and locations
- Rules for staking claims and maintaining mineral leases
- The MRA will not alter or replace any other federal or territorial laws and regulations already governing mining and exploration in the NWT. The MRA will not affect requirements and processes already set out under the Mackenzie Valley Resources Management Act.
- Dates for in-person meetings and information sessions are still being finalized. To stay up-to-date on dates, visit ITI’s public engagement website and social media handles.
- ITI Public Engagement Portal
- Discussion Paper — Unlocking our Potential Together: A Mineral Resources Act for the Northwest Territories
- ITI Social Media Handles
Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment
Government of the Northwest Territories