MAC: Mines and Communities

Baker Lake Reacting To News Of Uranium Exploration Plans

Published by MAC on 2005-08-08
Source: CBC North radio news

Baker Lake reacting to news of uranium exploration plans

CBC North radio news

August 8, 2005

People in Baker Lake are responding to the news that a Saskatchewan-based company will be exploring for uranium near the hamlet. Cameco is the world's largest uranium producer. The company has reached an agreement to prospect for uranium on ground held by DeBeers, the world's largest diamond producer. The Aberdeen Lake property is about 150 miles from Baker Lake. In the late 1980s, the community voted not to support a proposed uranium mine project 80 km west of the hamlet. Joan Scottie was part of a local group that lobbied against the project. Scottie says other people in the hamlet may have changed their minds about uranium mining, especially if the mine would bring jobs to Baker Lake. But she says she's still opposed to any uranium project anywhere near Baker Lake.

"Aberdeen Lake is part of Baker Lake and part of the Thelon River. The concerns we have are still there. To our water system and to other issues like radioactive waste."

Scottie says she's not too worried about the uranium exploration plans at this point because they still have to go to a lot of regulatory hoops before they could even propose a mine. Baker Lake mayor David Aksawnee says he needs to find out more about the exploration agreement and get more feedback from the community before he'll comment.

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