Cigar Lake ·
Dawn Lake ·
Hidden Bay ·
Hook Lake (Geomode) ·
Patterson Lake South ·
Rook I ·
Saskatoon REE plant ·
Shea Creek ·
Waterbury Lake ·
> See also Issues for:
Operating Mines ·
Decommissioning Projects ·
Legislation & Regulations
> See also Data for:
Deposits, Proposed and Active Mines ·
Old Mines and Decommissioning (NWT)
> See also: New Uranium Mining Projects - Canada (Archive)
The following companies are performing uranium prospection and/or exploration in Saskatchewan: - sorry, too many to list here -
Athabasca Basin Exploration Properties (Exploration GIS)
Baselode announces exploration agreement with English River First Nation
On Feb. 27, 2023, Baselode Energy Corp. announced a signed exploration agreement with English River First Nation ("ERFN") for consideration of exploration activities on the Catharsis project within ERFN's traditional lands. "The Agreement has established a mutually beneficial cooperation whereby Baselode and ERFN will continue to build a positive foundation to protect the rights and interests of ERFN, investing and supporting in ERFN's community development, and protecting the environment for future generations."
Skyharbour Resources Ltd. announces exploration agreement with English River First Nation
On Feb. 9, 2023, Skyharbour Resources Ltd. announced the signing of an Exploration Agreement with English River First Nation ("ERFN") for the Russell Lake and Moore Uranium Projects in respect of Skyharbour's exploration and evaluation activities within the traditional territory of ERFN.
Standard Uranium announces exploration agreement with Ya' thi Néné Lands and Resources, Athabasca First Nations and communities
On December 19, 2022, Standard Uranium Ltd. announced the signing of an Exploration Agreement that formalizes the company's relationship with Ya' thi Néné Lands and Resources (“YNLR”), Hatchet Lake Denesułiné First Nation, Black Lake Denesułiné First Nation, Fond du Lac Denesułiné First Nation (the "Athabasca First Nations") and the Northern Hamlet of Stony Rapids, the Northern Settlement of Uranium City, the Northern Settlement of Wollaston Lake and the Northern Settlement of Camsell Portage (the "Athabasca Municipalities", and the Athabasca First Nations, are collectively known as the "Basin Communities").
Fortune Bay announces exploration agreement with Ya' thi Néné Lands and Resources, Athabasca First Nations and communities
On November 29, 2022, Fortune Bay Corp. announced its conclusion of an Exploration Agreement that formalizes the company's relationship with Ya' thi Néné Lands and Resources ("YNLR"), Hatchet Lake Denesułiné First Nation, Black Lake Denesułiné First Nation, Fond du Lac Denesułiné First Nation (the "Athabasca First Nations") and the Northern Hamlet of Stony Rapids, the Northern Settlement of Uranium City, the Northern Settlement of Wollaston Lake and the Northern Settlement of Camsell Portage (the "Athabasca Municipalities", and together with the Athabasca First Nations, the "Basin Communities").
In addition to its Goldfields gold exploration project, the company is advancing the 100% owned Strike and Murmac uranium exploration projects, located near the Goldfields Project.
Saskatchewan First Nations sign exploration benefit agreement with Denison Mines
A new exploration benefit agreement between Denison Mines and Far North First Nations and communities is being hailed as a step in the right direction. Denison is committing to meaningful engagement on proposed uranium developments in the Athabasca Region.
The deal could see training and employment opportunities, business opportunities, environmental protection, and financial contributions to the Hatchet Lake Denesųłiné First Nation, Black Lake Denesųłiné First Nation, Fond du Lac Denesųłiné First Nation and the communities of Stony Rapids, Uranium City, Wollaston Lake, and Camsell Portage.
The agreement ensures that Denison conducts exploration in a sustainable manner while respecting Treaty Rights and advancing reconciliation.
(MBC News Oct. 19, 2022)
Saskatchewan First Nation erects blockade after uranium exploration company enters territory without consent
A northern Saskatchewan First Nation blockaded a road and issued a cease and desist order against a Toronto uranium company.
Birch Narrows Dene Nation officials say they took action after Baselode Energy workers started surveying the band's traditional territory without consent.
Birch Narrows Dene Nation elder Ron Desjardin says a proper wildlife and habitat study must be conducted before any talks can begin on uranium exploration in their traditional territory. Desjardin said the endangered woodland caribou are his biggest concern.
Baselode board chair Stephen Stewart said in an inteview the company obtained all necessary provincial permits.
The province takes the position that a traditional land use study is not required by law. In the statement, the official said "deliberately blocking Crown lands is illegal" and could be referred to RCMP [federal and national police]. *)
But [University of Saskatchewan] law instructor Benjamin Ralston said it's clear in the Canadian constitution, as well as in recent Supreme Court of Canada rulings, that there is a "duty to consult and accommodate" Indigenous rights holders.
The blockade is no longer up, but Birch Narrows members are patrolling the area regularly.
(CBC Feb. 21, 2021)
*) this statement brings back very unpleasant memories...
On Feb. 22, 2021, Baselode Energy announced that it has paused on-site work at its Shadow property to continue further consultation with the local communities.
Dene Trappers blockade Northern Saskatchewan highway to protest against mineral and oil exploration
A group of trappers say they've blockaded a highway in northeast Saskatchewan to fight for their livelihood and the environment.
"They've had enough," said Candyce Paul, spokesperson for the Northern Trappers Alliance . "They're worried what will happen to their land and their way of life if these companies get established."
The blockade of Highway 955 just north of La Loche began at 11 a.m. Saturday (Nov. 22).
Approximately a dozen trappers have established a camp on the side of the road.
They've pitched tents and accumulated supplies. They will remain there 24 hours a day until government and resource company officials "get the message," Paul said.
She said government has allowed companies to take over pieces of land long used by trappers living traditionally. This includes the erection of fencing which now blocks traditional trap lines.
Paul said she's seen the damage done to indigenous communities and the environment on trips to the "tarsands" regions of northern Alberta. She doesn't want northern Saskatchewan to suffer the same fate at the hands of oil and uranium companies.
(The Starphoenix, Nov. 23, 2014)
Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations chief demands revenue sharing deal with First Nations for new mining projects
The provincial government should not issue any new permits for potash, uranium or other resource development until First Nations concerns are addressed, Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations Chief Perry Bellegarde says.
"We need to change how we do business with the province," Bellegarde told chiefs and delegates at the FSIN assembly on the Whitecap Dakota Nation south of Saskatoon this week.
Bellegarde said the province's lack of a revenue sharing deal with First Nations stemmed from "economic racism."
"Do not issue a licence to Cameco or Areva or BHP until indigenous issues are addressed," he said.
(Saskatoon Star Phoenix June 7, 2013)
Cameco/Areva deal with English River First Nation
English River First Nation band members oppose Cameco/Areva deal:
English River First Nation band members are reacting strongly to a collaboration agreement between the band and two uranium mining companies.
The deal with Cameco and Areva was signed on Friday (May 31) and guarantees approximately $600 million in business contracts and employee wages over the next 10 years.
Cheryl Maurice, a life-long resident of English River First Nation, and a group of band members are expressing concern about the agreement signing process.
At the heart of the issue was a lack of a proper consultation leading up to the deal's ratification, she said.
"I am speaking for a group of people who weren't aware that this agreement was being negotiated because there was no consultation process."
(CJME June 4, 2013)
English River First Nation signs deal with Cameco and Areva:
Uranium giants Cameco and Areva have reached a $600 million deal with a Saskatchewan First Nation to support their mining operations and drop a lawsuit over land near the proposed Millennium project.
The collaboration agreement is with the English River First Nation, a band of more than 1,000 people who live on reserves about 600 kilometres north of Saskatoon.
The money is to flow to the First Nation over 10 years through contracts with band-owned businesses and wages to band members who would work at the mines and on community development projects.
There would also be direct payments to the community for education, health, sports and recreation programs.
The agreement, to be signed at a ceremony Friday (May 31), states the deal will be worth significantly more to the band if Cameco Corp.'s Millennium project goes ahead.
The proposed underground mine, which still requires environmental approval, is estimated to contain more than 50 million pounds of uranium.
(The Canadian Press May 30, 2013)
English River First Nation to discuss deal with Cameco and Areva:
A northern Saskatchewan First Nation is holding community meetings to discuss a proposed agreement with uranium producers Cameco and AREVA.
The agreement could provide an estimated CDN$ 600 million in economic benefit to the English River First Nation over the next 10 years through industry employment, sustainable business development and community investment.
(The Canadian Press May 23, 2013)
Cameco/Areva deal with northern community of Pinehouse
Lawsuit against Cameco/Areva deal with northern community of Pinehouse dismissed:
A justice has thrown out a lawsuit attempting to nullify an agreement between the northern village of Pinehouse and uranium companies Cameco Corp. and Areva.
Pinehouse and the Kineepik Metis Local signed a collaboration agreement in 2012 with uranium firms Cameco Corp. and Areva Resources Canada Inc. to provide residents with an estimated $200 million in jobs, cash payments and other economic benefits over 11 years.
The plaintiffs, which include 40 individuals and groups, have said the deal is bad for the environment and bad for the community.
In the claim, the plaintiffs alleged the agreement would harm "present and future citizens' rights to the use of the water for drinking, washing, fishing, agriculture and recreation." They said there was inadequate consultation and the community could not give informed consent.
Justice Alison Rothery dismissed the suit and ordered each of the eight defendants named in the legal action are entitled to costs in the sum of $2,000.
(StarPhoenix Sep. 10, 2014)
Non-profit magazine sues to get information on uranium deal with Pinehouse (Saskatchewan):
Editors from Briarpatch Magazine have been trying to get documents from the northern Village of Pinehouse on agreements it has with uranium mining companies Areva and Cameco.
Pinehouse Mayor Mike Natomagan is named as the defendant on the statement of claim filed Tuesday (Jan. 28) in Court of Queen's Bench in Regina.
The non-profit magazine filed a freedom of information request in April 2013, and Saskatchewan privacy commissioner Gary Dickson recommended that Natomagan provide the requested material.
Valerie Zink, a plaintiff on the statement of claim and former Briarpatch editor said the village has not complied with the freedom of information request and that's why the magazine has filed the lawsuit.
(The Canadian Press Jan. 29, 2014)
> View Briarpatch Magazine release Jan. 27, 2014
Legal action challenges Cameco/Areva deal with northern community of Pinehouse:
The Northern Village of Pinehouse and uranium industry giants Cameco and Areva celebrated their December 2012 collaboration agreement, but Pinehouse residents and supporters from throughout Saskatchewan and beyond are taking legal action to have it annulled in court.
On June 24, a statement of claim was filed in provincial court in Prince Albert on behalf of 42 plaintiffs who are challenging the legality of the agreement and the lack of consultation in Pinehouse, a primarily Métis community located 500 kilometres north of Saskatoon.
(The Media Co-op June 25, 2013)
Cameco and Areva sign revised deal with northern community of Pinehouse:
On Dec. 12, 2012, Cameco and Areva signed a revised collaboration agreement with the northern community of Pinehouse. In exchange for their financial commitments, the companies still demand unequivocal support of the community for their existing operations (Rabbit Lake, McClean Lake, McArthur River, Key Lake, and Cigar Lake), proposed projects (in particular Millennium), and exploration projects in any official proceedings; the clause prohibiting any criticism from the community or its members was dropped, though.
> Download Collaboration Agreement, Dec. 12, 2012 (1.2MB PDF)
Cameco and Areva offer deal to northern community of Pinehouse - in exchange for suppression of any criticism or opposition:
An offer by uranium giants Cameco Corp. and Areva could soon deliver jobs, cash payments and other benefits to the northern community of Pinehouse , but some residents worry it's a thinly veiled attempt to buy their silence.
The agreement would prohibit Pinehouse from criticizing the companies now or in the future, a measure that amounts to an indefinite "gag order," said Pinehouse resident Fred Peterson.
Peterson and other residents fear the so-called gag order will extend beyond their elected officials. One clause obliges leaders to "make reasonable efforts to ensure Pinehouse members do not say or do anything that interferes with or delays Cameco/Areva's mining."
"They are trying to take away our voice as individuals and as a community," said John Smerek, a resident of Pinehouse, a largely Metis and First Nations municipality of 1,000 people located about 400 kilometres north of Saskatoon.
(Saskatoon Star Phoenix Nov. 27, 2012)
> Download Summary of the Colloboration Agreement Term Sheet, Oct. 12, 2012 (5MB PDF)
A group of eight people in Saskatchewan will file an injunction in court to prevent the signing of the agreement.
(Radio Canada Dec. 10, 2012)
Drilling company employee dies in accident at Cree East project uranium exploration site, company fined
On February 22nd, 2011, CanAlaska Uranium Ltd. announced that an employee of DJ Drilling (2004) Ltd., the drill contractor for the company on the Cree East project, was killed when the bulldozer he was driving fell through the ice into Cree Lake, SK early yesterday (Feb. 21) morning.
The workplace death of a man who fell through the ice and died in northern Saskatchewan has resulted in a CDN$ 46,000 fine for a B.C. company.
On Feb. 21, 2011, a 54-year-old worker was clearing a drill pad at a uranium exploration site on frozen Cree Lake with a crawler tractor when the machine broke through the ice.
J.D. Drilling pleaded guilty to an Occupational Health and Safety charge of failing to ensure the work was being appropriately supervised.
The company was fined in Prince Albert provincial court on June 19.
(CBC July 9, 2013)
Uranium exploration company fined CDN$ 85,676 for burning hazardous waste in northern Saskatchwan
Titan Uranium Incorporated has been convicted in La Ronge Provincial Court of one count under the Crown Resource Land Regulations and fined a total of CDN$ 85,676 for burning hazardous waste materials.
The Ministry of Environment received a call in April 2009 that led conservation officers to a remote area on Sutton Lake in northern Saskatchewan to investigate a suspicious fire. Hazardous waste materials had been ignited and left to burn at a vacant exploration camp site, resulting in environmental charges being laid against the company.
(Gov. of Saskatechewan Oct. 14, 2010)
Sparton and NuCoal to evaluate NuCoal's Saskatchewan coal holdings for germanium and uranium
On Aug. 26, 2009, Sparton Resources Inc. and NuCoal Energy Corporation , announced that they have executed a Memorandum of Understanding wherein Sparton and NuCoal will jointly evaluate the potential of NuCoal's lignitic coal holdings in Saskatchewan to host commercial germanium and uranium mineralization.
Bishops raise concerns over nuclear and uranium industry development in Saskatchewan
Roman Catholic, Lutheran, and Anglican bishops, speaking on behalf of their churches in Saskatchewan, raised concerns about the Saskatchewan Party government's pursuit of nuclear development in the province.
Bishop Cynthia Halmarson of the Saskatchewan Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada told reporters in a prepared statement that "exploiting the Earth's resources . . . beyond their normal spatial and temporal scales is sinful against God and against God's creation according to Christian belief."
"Of particular concern is that the potential damage to nature with respect to the uranium industry is of a different order and magnitude of past damage, manifested in ways distinct from nature's own regenerative and restorative capacities for life and self-renewal," she said, flanked by Daniel Bohan, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Regina and Gregory Kerr-Wilson, the Anglican Bishop of the Qu'Appelle diocese.
(The Star Phoenix Feb. 25, 2009)
Triple Five Group makes agreements with seven Saskatchewan First Nations for uranium exploration
The company behind two of North America's mammoth shopping malls says it is going to look for uranium in northern Saskatchewan.
Triple Five Group , owned by Edmonton's Ghermezian family, says it has made economic development agreements with seven Saskatchewan First Nations.
The biggest agreement appears to be with the English River First Nation and will allow the company to look for and develop the uranium on traditional lands near Slush Lake.
(The Canadian Press Feb. 13, 2008)
Chinese company enters Joint Venture for uranium exploration in Saskatchewan
On Jan. 7, 2008, Ditem Explorations Inc. announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Sinosteel Scie-Tech Development Corporation (a wholly owned subsidiary of Sinosteel Corp. ) on exploration and development work on uranium properties in the Athabasca Basin.
Black Lake Denesuline First Nation options reserve lands to CanAlaska Uranium Ltd for uranium exploration
On Dec. 21, 2006, CanAlaska Uranium Ltd. announced that it has finalized an
option agreement with the Black Lake Denesuline First Nation to undertake
uranium exploration on Black Lake Reserve lands. The Black Lake lands are
located on the northern rim of the Athabasca Basin in Saskatchewan, Canada
and cover 32,036 hectares (79,163 acres).
Fond Du Lac Denesuline First Nation options reserve lands to CanAlaska Uranium Ltd for uranium exploration
On Nov. 29, 2006, CanAlaska Uranium Ltd. announced that it has entered into an
option agreement with the Fond Du Lac Denesuline First Nation to undertake
uranium exploration on its reserve lands. The Fond Du Lac lands are located
on the northern rim of the Athabasca Basin in Saskatchewan, Canada and
cover 38,458 hectares (95,030 acres).
The region is known to host several uranium occurrences, including the
Fond Du Lac uranium deposit, which was delineated by Eldorado Nuclear in
the 1970's and hosts an historical reserve estimate (non 43-101 compliant)
of 1 million pounds U3O8 at a grade of 0.25% U3O8.
Province funds construction of REE processing facility in Saskatoon, capable of extracting rare earth elements from ores and from uranium raffinates:
On Aug. 27, 2020, the Government of Saskatchewan announced C$31 million in funding for a Rare Earth Processing Facility in Saskatchewan.
The Facility will be able to process both main hard rock ores (Bastnaesite and Monazite) and in the future, will also be capable of processing Uranium Raffinate concentrate, a rich source of REE from Saskatchewan's uranium industry.
The processing facility will be owned and operated by the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), and will be over 69,000 square feet [6,400 square metres] in size. It will be built in Saskatoon.
The Facility is expected to be fully operational in late 2022 with construction beginning in fall 2020.
> View deposit info
Denison reports positive Preliminary Economic Assessment for acid in situ leach uranium mining of THT deposit at Waterbury Lake with 200 m-deep freeze wall:
On Nov. 17, 2020, Denison Mines Corp. announced the successful completion of an independent Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for the Waterbury Lake Property evaluating the potential use of the in-situ recovery (ISR) mining method at the Tthe Heldeth Túé (THT, formerly named J Zone) deposit with associated processing at the McClean Lake mill.
The THT deposit is an unconformity-related uranium deposit, where the mineralization "is interpreted" to be situated in permeable ground -- "expected" to allow a mining solution to travel within the mineralized zone. Additionally, the basement rock located below the mineralized zone "is interpreted" to be highly impermeable and "is expected" to allow for containment of the mining solution beneath the deposit.
Full hydraulic containment of the orebody during mining activities has been planned for the Project with the installation of a 200 m-deep freeze wall from surface to the basement rocks underlying the THT deposit.
The lixiviant mix needed at the THT site is anticipated to be a low-ph (acidic) solution.
The THT ISR operation is estimated to produce total mine production of 9.7 million pounds U3O8 (3,731 t U) over an approximate six year mine-life with final processing occurring at the McClean Lake mill. The PEA includes an indicative timeline with pre-production activities beginning in 2025, and with first production estimated in 2028.
The assumed selling price is USD$ 53.59 per lb U3O8 -- while the current market price is approx. US$ 30 per lb U3O8.
On Dec. 30, 2020, Denison released the full PEA report.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility
Denison initiates preparation of Preliminary Economic Assessment for in situ leach uranium mining of J Zone deposit at Waterbury Lake property:
On July 28, 2020, Denison Mines Corp. announced the successful completion of an internal conceptual mining study examining the potential future development of the J Zone uranium deposit using the In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") mining method. Based on the results from the Concept Study, the Company has decided to initiate the preparation of a Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA"), which is expected to be completed during the second half of 2020.
> View deposit info
On August 12, 2014, Prescient Mining Corp. terminated the option agreement for the Hook Lake uranium project and switched business to grow cannabis under the new name of Aurora Cannabis Inc.
In fiscal year 2011, Prescient Mining Corp. entered into an option agreement with Geomode Mineral Exploration Ltd. for the exclusive right and option to acquire a 100% undivided interest in the Hook Lake Project, located in the Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan.
> View deposit info
EIS for Rook I uranium mine project open for public comment:
Deadline for written comments is October 3, 2023.
> Access: Project documents (Gov. of Saskatchewan - Environmental Assessment) [Note: these pages contain several broken links]
NexGen signs agreement with Métis Nation over development of Rook I uranium deposit:
On June 15, 2023, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the signing of an Impact Benefit Agreement with the Métis Nation - Saskatchewan Northern Region 2 and the Métis Nation - Saskatchewan, covering all phases of the Rook I Project, which hosts the 100% owned Arrow uranium deposit.
Draft EIS for Rook I uranium mine project open for public comment:
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is seeking comments during a 90-day public comment period on the draft environmental impact statement (EIS), for the proposed Rook l Project submitted by the proponent, NexGen Energy Ltd.
Comments must be submitted by October 12, 2022.
> Acces: Rook I Project documents (Canadian Impact Assessment Registry - CIAR)
Draft EIS submitted for Rook I uranium mine project:
On June 13, 2022, NexGen Energy Ltd. submitted a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for the proposed Rook I Project to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC). CNSC staff are currently conducting a 30-day conformity review to ensure that sufficient information has been submitted in accordance with the CNSC Generic Guidelines for the Preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement. If the draft EIS is deemed sufficient, a 90-day technical and public review will commence in July 2022. (CNSC June 16, 2022)
NexGen signs agreement with Clearwater River Dene Nation over development of Rook I uranium deposit:
On April 25, 2022, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the signing of an Impact Benefit Agreement ("IBA") with the Clearwater River Dene Nation ("CRDN"), covering all phases of the Rook I Project, which hosts the 100% owned Arrow uranium deposit.
The Rook I Project is located within the traditional territory of the CRDN. The IBA defines the environmental, cultural, economic, employment and other benefits to be provided to the CRDN by NexGen in respect of the Project, and to confirm the consent and support of CRDN for the Project throughout its complete lifecycle, including reclamation.
NexGen signs agreements with Dene Nations over development of Rook I uranium deposit:
On July 14, 2021, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the signing of an Impact Benefit Agreement ("IBA") with the Buffalo River Dene Nation ("BRDN"), and the signing of a Mutual Benefit Agreement ("MBA") with the Birch Narrows Dene Nation ("BNDN"), which hosts the 100% owned Arrow uranium deposit.
The Rook I Project is located within the traditional territory of BRDN and BNDN. Both the IBA and MBA define the environmental, cultural, economic, employment and other benefits to be provided to the BRDN and BNDN by NexGen in respect of the Project and confirm the consent and support of both BRDN and BNDN for the Project throughout its complete lifecycle, including reclamation.
Positive Feasibility Study announced for Arrow high grade uranium deposit; tailings to be stored underground:
On Feb. 22, 2021, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the positive results of an independent Feasibility Study, Mineral Reserve and Mineral Resource update of the Arrow Deposit, located on the company's 100% owned Rook I project. The study is based on a uranium price of US$ 50 per lb U3O8.
All waste streams from the process plant are planned to be stored underground in the Underground Tailings Management Facility [!] while process water streams will be treated on surface.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility
Saskatchewan Métis file court claim against NexGen Energy over breach of contract in establishment of Rook I uranium mine project:
The Métis Nation - Saskatchewan (MN-S) has filed a claim against NexGen Energy Ltd. stating NexGen is in breach of its legal obligations under a study agreement that was signed between MN-S and NexGen. NexGen plans to eventually establish a uranium mine in the southwest of the Athabasca Basin.
MN-S and northern region leadership are concerned the project will have significant and long-lasting impacts on Métis communities, Métis lands, and Métis rights and culture, particularly in northwest Saskatchewan.
MN-S is seeking a declaration from the courts stating NexGen is in breach of its obligations to negotiate an Impact Benefit Agreement ("IBA") with MN-S in good faith; an interlocutory injunction restraining NexGen from filing its draft environmental impact statement in relation to the Rook one Project, damages and costs.
(meadowlakeNOW Sep. 9, 2020)
CNSC issues decision on scope of environmental assessment for Rook I uranium mine project:
> Download: Record of Decision - Decision on the scope of an environmental assessment for the proposed Rook I Project , Feb. 20, 2020 (PDF)
> Rook I Project (Canadian Impact Assessment Registry)
Comments invited on Project Description for Rook I uranium mine project:
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is seeking comments from the public and Indigenous groups on the project description for the proposed Rook I Project. The project involves the construction of a new uranium mining and milling operation located on the Patterson Lake peninsula in the southwestern Athabasca Basin in northern Saskatchewan, approximately 155 km north of the town of La Loche, SK.
The project comprises, among others:
Written comments must be submitted by June 1, 2019.
- underground mine development
- an on-site mill to process an average of 1,400 tonnes of ore per day
- surface facilities to support the short and long-term storage of waste rock and ore
- an underground tailings management facility [!]
> View: Public Notice , May 3, 2019
> Download: Rook I Project, Project Description , NexGen Energy Ltd, April 2019 (7.3MB PDF)
> Access: NexGen Energy Ltd. - Rook I Project, 2019-004 (Gov. of Saskatchewan - Environmental Assessment)
Site preparation and construction license application filed for Rook I uranium mine project:
On Apr. 29, 2019, NexGen announced that it has filed an Initial Licence Application with the CNSC under the Nuclear Safety and Control Act in order to obtain a Licence to Prepare Site and Construct for the Project.
Review process for Environmental Assessment of Rook I uranium mine and mill project started:
"NexGen Energy Ltd. is proposing to construct, operate and decommission a uranium mine and mill in the southwestern Athabasca Basin, 155 km north of the Town of La Loche, Saskatchewan."
The Technical Proposal is pending ("Describes the project and identifies possible environmental impacts together with any measures planned to reduce or avoid those impacts").
> View: NexGen Energy Ltd. - Rook I Project, 2019-004 (Gov. of Saskatchewan - Environmental Assessment)
On Apr. 29, 2019, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the acceptance of a Project Description (Technical Proposal) by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment.
Positive Pre-Feasibility Study announced for Arrow high grade uranium deposit:
On Nov. 5, 2018, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the positive results of an independent Pre-Feasibility Study of its basement-hosted Arrow Deposit.
Positive Preliminary Economic Assessment announced for Arrow high grade uranium deposit:
On July 31, 2017, NexGen Energy Ltd. announced the positive results of its independent maiden Preliminary Economic Assessment of the basement-hosted Arrow Deposit.
> View deposit info
Fission Uranium submits application for license to construct uranium mine and mill at Patterson Lake South project:
On April 27, 2023, Fission Uranium Corp. announced an application to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission ("CNSC") for a license to construct a uranium mine and mill facility at the Patterson Lake South high-grade uranium project in Canada's Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan.
Fission Uranium presents positive Feasibility Study for Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Mar. 2, 2023, Fission Uranium Corp. presented a Feasibility Study for its Patterson Lake South uranium mine project. The underground mine would produce 3,488 t U per year over the 10 year mine life.
The study is based on a uranium sales price of 65 US$/lb U3O8.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility
Fission Uranium signs agreement with Métis Nation on Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Jan. 12, 2023, Fission Uranium Corp. announced that it has entered into a Capacity Funding Agreement with the Métis Nation of Saskatchewan ("MN-S"). Fission's PLS project in the southwest Athabasca Basin region is within MN-S Northern Region II. Fission commenced an Environmental Assessment in December 2021 and is currently in the final stages of a Feasibility Study. The company intends to facilitate a comprehensive impact assessment of the Project.
Fission Uranium signs agreement with Birch Narrows Dene Nation on Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Nov. 10, 2022, Fission Uranium Corp. announced that it has entered into an Engagement and Capacity Agreement with the Birch Narrows Dene Nation ("BNDN"). Fission's PLS project in the southwest Athabasca Basin region is within the BNDN's Ancestral Lands.
Fission Uranium signs agreement with Buffalo River Dene Nation on Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On July 18, 2022, Fission Uranium Corp. announced that it has entered into an engagement and communication agreement with the Buffalo River Dene Nation .
Fission Uranium signs agreement with Ya'thi Néné Lands and Resources Office on Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On June 20, 2022, Fission Uranium Corp. announced that it has entered into an engagement and capacity agreement with the Ya'thi Néné Lands and Resources Office ("YNLR"), which represents the Athabasca Nations and Communities of the Nuhenéné. Fission's PLS project in the Athabasca Basin is within the Athabasca Denesųłiné territory and is currently advancing through the Feasibility Study and Environmental Assessment phase.
> Access related documents (Government of Saskatchewan)
Project description released for Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
Fission Uranium Corp. is proposing to build and operate a uranium mine at its Patterson Lake South (PLS) Property located at Patterson Lake in northern Saskatchewan (SK), approximately 160 km north of La Loche, SK. The Project is proposed as a stand-alone mining project and will include the mining operations, milling operations, tailings management facility, ore and waste stockpiles, camp, airstrip, and full suite of ancillary facilities necessary to support a uranium project.
Approximately 1,000 tons per day of ore-grade uranium rock would be mined and processed over about 8 years of production at up to 15 million pounds of uranium [U3O8] per year [5,769 t U/a].
Two mining options were originally considered for the Project: underground only mining, and a hybrid open pit/underground mining option. [...] the underground only option is the one Fission is proposing to use as it is considerably less likely to have significant environmental impacts, although it also does not recover as much ore as the hybrid option.
Depending on the mining method chosen, the Project has a three to four-year construction period, followed by at least eight years of mining.
The TMF [Tailings Management Facility] will incorporate the proven [?] pervious surround design to create a consolidated low hydraulic conductivity mass of tailings for effective decommissioning and stable long-term performance. [...] The TMF design utilizes both below grade and above grade storage. [...]
The Project is located within Treaty 8 territory which encompasses 840,000 square kilometers and is home to 39 First Nations communities. Fission understands that First Nations from Treaty 10 territory have also traditionally utilized the Project area. First Nations from both Treaty 8 and Treaty 10 have traditional territories which overlap the Project site.
Métis peoples currently and have historically utilized the Project area for hunting, fishing, and trapping. Métis Northern Region II representatives are active in the area, and the Project is in close proximity to a number of Métis Locals with whom Fission is currently engaging.
> Access related documents (Government of Saskatchewan)
Environmental Assessment process commenced for Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Dec. 1, 2021, Fission Uranium Corp. announced the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment has formally accepted the recently submitted Project Description ("Technical Proposal") for the PLS uranium project in Saskatchewan, Canada. With this acceptance, Fission has now commenced the Environmental Assessment as per the requirements of The Saskatchewan Environmental Assessment Act.
Clearwater River Dene Nation denounces uranium exploration within its Traditional Lands "in the absence of meaningful consultation":
On Nov. 10, 2021, the Clearwater River Dene Nation (CRDN) announced that it served notice on the uranium industry and the Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan regarding the community's grave concerns about the potential impacts and risks posed by an increasing number of uranium mining and milling projects and exploration activities occurring within its Traditional Lands.
Over the past few years, numerous mining companies have conducted uranium exploration and have proposed extensive development in the heart of CRDN's Traditional Lands. This includes proposals for mines by NexGen Energy Ltd. and Fission Uranium Corp. and exploration activities by Denison Mines Corp., Standard Uranium, Purepoint Uranium, Cameco, UEX Uranium, Orano, Azincourt Energy, and other lease holders affiliated proponents. The Government of Saskatchewan has granted tenure and issued authorizations for exploratory activities in the absence of meaningful consultation with the CRDN.
CRDN General Manager Walter Hainault states, "contrary to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP) and directives of the Supreme Court of Canada, governments have and continue to illegally permit uranium companies to run roughshod over our People, Traditional Lands and Treaty rights. As a result, we now have uranium mines being proposed in the Patterson Lake Area [PLA] -- the hub and heartland of our ancient and traditional lands". The CRDN is the Indigenous Nation and Government in closest proximity to the 'Patterson Corridor' of interest to the uranium industry and the PLA.
(CRDN Nov. 10, 2021)
Saskatchewan First Nation erects security checkpoint near Patterson Lake uranium exploration area:
The Clearwater River Dene Nation (CRDN) of north-west Saskatchewan announced that it has erected a Security Checkpoint on Highway #955 that runs through its reserve to the uranium rich zones located just to the north of the community. The CRDN action is in response to the Government of Saskatchewan's (GOS) ongoing granting of approvals to uranium exploration companies in the absence of any meaningful consultation with the CRDN or consent of its Elders, Trappers and community members.
(CRDN May 31, 2021)
Fission Uranium signs agreement with Clearwater River Dene Nation on Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On March 25, 2021, Fission Uranium Corp. announced that it has entered into an engagement and capacity agreement with the Clearwater River Dene Nation ("CRDN"). Fission's PLS project in the Athabasca Basin is within the CRDN's traditional land use area, and is currently advancing towards the Feasibility and Environmental Assessment phases.
Positive results of Prefeasibility Study announced for underground only mining scenario of Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Nov. 7, 2019, Fission Uranium Corp announced the results of a Prefeasibility Study ("PFS") for an underground only mining scenario for its Patterson Lake South property.
Positive results of Prefeasibility Study announced for Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Apr. 15, 2019, Fission Uranium Corp announced the results of a Prefeasibility Study ("PFS") and first-time estimate of Mineral Reserves for its Patterson Lake South property.
An average annual production of 10.7 million lbs U3O8 [4,104 t U] is foreseen over the 8.2-year life of the mine.
The PFS base case uses a uranium price of US$ 50 per lb U3O8.
China's CGN Mining Co Ltd buys interest in developer of Patterson Lake South high-grade uranium deposit:
China's CGN Mining Company Limited bought a nearly 20 percent stake in Fission Uranium Corp, marking the first time a Chinese company has directly invested in a Canadian uranium company, Fission said on Monday (Dec. 21).
(Reuters Dec. 21, 2015)
On Jan. 26, 2016, CGN Mining Company Limited announced that on January 26, 2016, CGN has acquired 96,736,540 common shares of Fission Uranium Corp., constituting approximately 19.99% of the issued and outstanding shares of Fission Uranium Corp.
Preliminary Economic Assessment predicts "robust economics" for Patterson Lake South uranium mine project:
On Sep. 3, 2015, Fission Uranium Corp. announced the summary results of a National Instrument 43-101 compliant Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA") for the high-grade uranium resource identified to date on the Triple R Uranium Deposit, at its 100% owned PLS [Patterson Lake South] property in Canada's Athabasca Basin region. The PEA was prepared by RPA Inc.
The PEA study considers the PLS project as a stand-alone mine and mill operation, which includes development and extraction of the R00E and R780E zones (Triple R deposit).
The study envisions a combination of open-pit and underground mining, with a dyke system (dyke and slurry wall) for water control [since the pit will be located in the lake]. High-grade mineralization (above 4% U3O8) is captured within the open pit, eliminating the need for expensive, specialized underground mining methods.
An average annual production of 7.2 million lbs U3O8 [2,769 t U] is foreseen over the 14-year life of the mine.
The PEA base case uses a uranium price of US$ 65 per lb U3O8.
> View deposit info
Cameco withdraws license application for Millennium uranium mine project, due to poor economic conditions:
In May 2014, Cameco requested the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission postpone a June, 2014 hearing that had been scheduled to conclude the Environmental Assessment. Cameco cited poor economic conditions in world uranium markets as the reason to halt proceedings. Cameco also withdrew its application for a 10-year licence to construct and operate Millennium.
(Cameco May 2014)
CNSC to hold public hearing on Cameco's license application for Millennium uranium mine project - canceled:
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) will hold a public hearing (June 18, 2014 - canceled) to consider Cameco Corporation's (Cameco) application for a 10-year licence for its Millennium Mine Project. Cameco is requesting a licence to mine an underground uranium deposit located approximately 600 km north of Saskatoon, within the Moon Lake drainage area, 36 km north of Cameco's Key Lake operation. The ore from this mine would be shipped to a regional mill for processing, so that no tailings would be produced or stored onsite.
Requests to intervene must be filed by May 16, 2014.
> Download Notice of Hearing , April 3, 2014 (PDF)
> Download Revised Notice of Hearing , April 8, 2014 (PDF)
> Download Cameco submission Apr. 17, 2014 (1.8MB PDF)
"Cameco informed the Commission that it does not wish to proceed with the licensing of the Millennium Mine project at this time, due to current economic conditions."
> Download Notice of Adjournment of Public Hearing , May 16, 2014 (PDF)
Cameco's Millennium underground uranium mine project gets environmental approval:
The province is giving the go-ahead to Cameco Corporation for a new uranium mine 600 kilometres north of Saskatoon.
It's called the "Millennium Project."
The government approved the company's environmental impact assessment earlier this month.
(CBC Dec. 30, 2013)
EIS for Cameco's Millennium underground uranium mine project open for public comment:
The public is invited to provide comments on the Environmental Impact Statement and associated documents, the Technical Review Comments and Comprehensive Study Report.
Written comments are required by November 18, 2013.
> View Public Notice Oct. 21, 2013 (CEAA)
> View Millennium Mine Project (CEAA)
> View Millennium Project (Saskatchewan Environment) - Complete EIS only available upon request -
Areva sells its stake in Millennium uranium mine project to Cameco:
On June 11, 2012, AREVA announced that it has closed the sale of its 27.94% interest in the Millennium mining project to Cameco Corporation for CAD$150 million (about EUR 115 million).
CNSC to hold un-hearing on Environmental Assessment Guidelines for Cameco's Millennium uranium mine project:
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) will hold a hearing in September 2010 to
consider the approval of the Environmental Assessment Guidelines for Cameco Corporation's proposed project for the development of an underground mine "Millennium" located in the Athabasca basin of northern Saskatchewan.
Cameco Corporation requires CNSC authorization to proceed with this work. The project will consist of an underground uranium mine located approximately 36 kilometres northeast of Cameco Corporation's Key Lake Operation. No milling would take place on-site. Ore and associated waste materials would be transported to a licensed mill along a new 21-kilometre access road that would connect to the existing road network between the Key Lake Operation and the McArthur River mine site. The proposed Millennium mine would produce 150,000 to 200,000 tonnes of ore annually for six to seven years.
The Commission has determined that a public hearing is not necessary to consider the proposed Environmental Assessment Guidelines for Cameco Corporation's request.
> Download Notice of Hearing, Sep. 20, 2010 (PDF)
Public Comments Invited on the project and conduct of the Comprehensive Study for the Millennium Mine Project:
Cameco Corporation is proposing to develop an underground uranium mine located in the southeastern part of the Athabasca Basin in northern Saskatchewan, approximately 600 km north of Saskatoon. The proposed Millennium mine would produce 150,000 to 200,000 tonnes of ore annually for six to seven years. Ore and associated waste materials would be transported to a licensed mill along a new 21 km access road that would connect to the existing road network.
Comments received by the CNSC by July 29, 2010 will be considered.
> Download Public Notice July 19, 2010
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency is making available $20,000 under its Participant Funding Program to assist groups and individuals to participate in the environmental assessment of the proposed Millennium Mine project in northern Saskatchewan.
Applications received by the Agency by June 15, 2010 will be considered.
> View Public Notice May 14, 2010 (CEAA)
Cameco Corporation is proposing to construct and operate a new underground uranium mine - the Millennium Project - north of its Key Lake Development.
The "Draft Project-Specific Guidelines Scoping Document for the Preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement, Millennium Project, Cameco Corporation, May 2010" has been released for public comment; written comments should be submitted by 22 June, 2010.
> View 2009-070, Cameco Corporation - Millennium Project (Environment Saskatchewan)
> View Millenium Mine Project Environmental Assessment information (CNSC)
Government agencies sign Project Agreement on federal review of Millennium uranium mine project
> Download Project agreement for the Millennium uranium mine project in Saskatchewan , March 2010 (MPMO)
> View Notice of Commencement of an Environmental Assessment , Sep. 16, 2009 (CEAA)
Cameco, as operator of the Cree Extension Joint Venture, is seeking regulatory approval to proceed with the Millennium project. The project is a proposed underground uranium mine located about 600 kilometres north of Saskatoon. This project is proposed as a mine-only development. There are no plans to construct on-site milling or tailings facilities. (Cameco, Sep. 8, 2009)
- The deposit contains indicated resources of 46.8 million pounds U3O8 [18,000 t U] at an average grade of 4.53% uranium at depths between 615 and 730 metres below surface.
- The proposed mine would produce 150,000 to 200,000 tonnes of ore annually at a
nominal grade of 2% for six to seven years.
- Ore and mineralized waste rock would be transported for processing or storage to a licensed mill, likely at the Key Lake operation, which is about 36 km southwest of the Millennium site.
- Subject to regulatory approval, construction of the Millennium Access Road would begin in 2012, followed by shaft sinking and surface and underground development from 2013 to 2017.
> View Millennium regulatory information (Cameco)
> Download Millennium Project, Project Description, Aug. 2009 (11.1M PDF - Cameco)
> View Millenium Mine Project Environmental Assessment information (CNSC)
> See extra page
> View Midwest ownership details
Conceptual mining study completed evaluating in situ leach mining for Midwest uranium deposit
On April 12, 2023, Denison Mines Corp. announced the successful completion of an internal conceptual mining study examining the potential application of the In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") mining method at the Company’s 25.17% owned Midwest project. The Concept Study was prepared by Denison during 2022 and was formally issued to the Midwest Joint Venture ("MWJV") in early 2023. Based on the positive results of the Concept Study, the MWJV has now provided Denison with approval to complete additional ISR-related evaluation work for Midwest in 2023.
Midwest uranium mine project stays on hold
Due to low uranium prices, the Midwest and McClean underground projects will continue to remain on stand-by in 2014.
(Denison Mines Mar. 6, 2014)
Canada's Environment Minister approves Environmental Assessment of Areva's Midwest uranium mine with milling at McClean Lake
On August 15, 2012, Canada's Environment Minister announced that the proposed Mining and Milling the Midwest Project is not likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects with the implementation of the mitigation measures and follow-up programs described in the comprehensive study report. The Minister has referred the project back to the responsible authorities, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Natural Resources Canada and Transport Canada, for appropriate action.
> View CEAA release Aug. 15, 2012
> View Mining and Milling the Midwest Project, McClean Lake Operation (SK) (CEAA)
Public comments invited on the Comprehensive Study Report for the environmental assessment of Areva's Midwest uranium mine and mill project
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (the Agency) invites public comments on the Comprehensive Study Report for the environmental assessment of the Mining and Milling the Midwest Project which is proposed by AREVA Resources, in Saskatchewan.
Public comments received by June 27, 2012 will be considered.
> View CEAA notice May 28, 2012
> Download Comprehensive Study Report for the Proposed Midwest Mining and Milling Project in Northern Saskatchewan, AREVA Resources Canada Incorporated , April 2012
> View Reference number 06-03-17519: Mining and Milling the Midwest Project (Canadian Environmental Assessment Registry)
CNSC approves Comprehensive Study Report for Areva's Midwest uranium mine and mill project
> Download Record of Proceedings, Including Reasons for Decision, May 11, 2012 (PDF - CNSC)
Government agencies sign Project Agreement on federal review of Midwest uranium mine project
"[...] the signatories (the Parties) to this Agreement commit to work together to facilitate an effective, accountable, transparent, timely and predictable federal review in relation to the development proposal and to contribute to the discharging of any duty to consult with Aboriginal groups."
> Download Project agreement for the Midwest uranium mining and milling project in Saskatchewan (Major Projects Management Office - MPMO)
Licence renewal for McClean Lake and Midwest
On June 30, 2009, CNSC announced its decision to revoke AREVA's Midwest Uranium Site Preparation Licence and to include it in McClean Lake licence.
> See details
Midwest uranium mine project postponed
On Nov. 25, 2008, Denison Mines Corp. announced that the owners of the Midwest joint venture consisting of AREVA (69.16%), OURD (5.67%) and Denison (25.17%) have determined that the development of the Midwest Project will be postponed due to current economic conditions. The status of the project will be reviewed every six months.
The postponement is a result of the current economic climate, delays and uncertainties associated with the regulatory approval process, the increasing capital and operating costs and the current market for uranium. Based on current estimates, capital costs have increased approximately 50% from the previous estimate of Cdn$435 million.
Midwest uranium mine project partners decide to proceed with the development of the project
On Dec. 3, 2007, Denison Mines Corp. announced the formal decision of the joint venture partners in the Midwest uranium mine project to proceed with the development of the project.
Subject to regulatory approvals, site construction, including the haul road, water treatment and other facilities, could begin in mid-2009. Stripping of the rock over the ore would then commence in early 2010 with ore removal starting in mid-2011 and continuing through to 2013.
The total capital cost including mine development and the related McClean Lake mill expansion of about $100 million will be approximately $400 million.
Environmental Assessment for Midwest uranium mine project to continue as a Comprehensive Study
On October 22, 2007, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency announced that the Minister of the Environment has determined that the Comprehensive Study currently underway is the most appropriate type of environmental assessment for the proposed Midwest Uranium Mine Project in northern Saskatchewan.
The responsible authorities will now continue the Comprehensive Study and will provide the public with an opportunity to participate in the environmental assessment.
> Download Midwest Project Environmental Impact Statement, August 2007 (Areva Resources)
CEAA offers participant funding for Environmental Assessment of Midwest uranium mine project
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency is making $20,000 available under its participant funding program to assist groups and/or individuals to take part in the environmental assessment of the Midwest Uranium Mine Development Project.
AREVA Resources Canada Inc. (AREVA) proposes changes to the current Midwest uranium mine development (Midwest Project) and to extend the mining and milling activities at the McClean Lake Operation to include the Midwest Project. The proposed project involves the open-pit mining of a uranium deposit located near the eastern margin of the Athabasca basin in northern Saskatchewan, and the transportation of the ore along a new dedicated haul road for milling at the McClean Lake Operation.
To be considered, applications must be received by the Agency by April 27, 2007.
> View Participant Funding Notice, March 29, 2007
> View Notice of Commencement of Environmental Assessment, Feb. 19, 2007
CNSC holds hearing on Areva's Environmental Assessment Track Report for Midwest uranium mine project
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) held a one-day public hearing on April 12, 2007, to consider the Environmental Assessment Track Report regarding AREVA Resources Canada Inc.'s (AREVA) proposal to mine a uranium ore deposit as an open pit mine at its Midwest location; to construct a dedicated haul road and pipeline between the Midwest and McClean Lake sites; and to expand its McClean Lake mill. The Commission will also consider the Project Specific Guidelines and Comprehensive Study Scoping Document (the Scoping Document).
The public was invited to comment on the proposed Track Report and Scoping Document. On June 19, 2007, CNSC announced its decision to recommend that the environmental assessment be continued as a comprehensive study. CNSC also approved the project-specific EA Guidelines.
> Download: Notice of Public Hearing, February 9, 2007 (PDF)
> Download Hearing Transcript Apr. 12, 2007 (PDF)
> View CNSC release June 19, 2007
> Download Record of Proceedings, Including Reasons for Decision, June 11, 2007 (PDF)
Public comment invited on the Draft Project-Specific Guidelines and Scoping Document for the proposed Midwest uranium mine development project
Areva Resources Canada Inc. proposes changes to the Midwest uranium mine development and to extend the mining and milling activities at the McClean Lake operation to include the Midwest Project.
Public comments are due by January 5, 2007.
The project consists of the following components:
> Download Saskatchewan Environment Public Notice Dec. 2, 2006 (0.7M PDF)
- developing the Midwest ore deposit as an open pit mine,
- developing a dedicated road linking the Midwest development with the
existing McClean Lake Operation; and
- increasing the production capacity of the JEB mill to accommodate the
planned rate for milling of the Midwest ore.
> Download COGEMA Resources Inc. Midwest Project description/proposal, December 2005, Version 1 (8.9M PDF)
> Download Draft Project-specific guidelines and comprehensive study scoping document, environmental impact assessment of the Midwest Project, Areva Resources Canada Inc. (3.4M PDF)
> See also: Saskatchewan Environment Notices Canadian Environmental Assessment Registry
Areva commits to proceed with Midwest uranium mine project
According to Saskatchewan Premier Lorne Calvert, Areva has made it official it plans to proceed with a new uranium mine at the Midwest Project near the McClean Lake mill in the northwestern corner of the province.
It's subject to environmental and other approvals but if it goes ahead, it will cost $200 million to develop and will employ 100 people, Calvert said.
Industry Minister Eric Cline said it's expected development on the mine will start in 2007 - 2008 and processing of ore from the project at Areva's McLean Lake Mill will begin in 2009 - 2010.
(CBC Jun 28, 2006)
CNSC starts Environmental Assessment for Midwest Project
On March 2, 2006, CNSC started the Environmental Assessment for COGEMA Resources Inc.'s Midwest Project. The project includes the development of the Midwest open pit mine, the haul road linking the Midwest development with the existing McClean Lake Operation, and the production capacity increase of the JEB mill to accommodate the planned rate for milling of the Midwest ore.
> View project description (CNSC)
CNSC issues mine site preparation license for Midwest project
Following a public hearing on February 28, 2002 and April 18, 2002, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) on May 16, 2002, announced its decision to issue a Uranium Mine Site Preparation Licence to COGEMA Resources Inc. (CRI) of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for the Midwest Project.
> View CNSC Release May 16, 2002
> Download Record of Proceedings, including the Reasons for Decision, May 16, 2002 (PDF)
> Download Transcript of April 18, 2002, Hearing (PDF)
> Download Transcript of February 28, 2002, Hearing (PDF)
> Download CNSC Release Dec. 3, 2001 (PDF)
AECB orders cease work at McClean Lake Tailings Management Facility
> See under McClean Lake
AECB approves construction of JEB Tailings Management Facility
> See under McClean Lake
Government approval for Midwest uranium mine project
On April 3, 1998, the Government of Canada and the Government of
Saskatchewan approved the Midwest uranium project to proceed
subject to certain conditions.
The Government of Canada agrees with most of the Review Panel's
recommendations (see below), with one major exception:
"The Government does not agree with the Panel's
condition that experiments be conducted to determine long-term
acceptability of the tailings management facility
before starting to deposit the tailings. Federal
regulatory agencies consider that experimental studies of the
aging tailings should take place at the same time that
disposal takes place." [...]
> View Natural Resources of Canada press release: 98/22 · 98/22 (a)
· 98/22 (b)
> View Govt. of Saskatchewan press releases: 98-231 · 98-232
Review Panel recommends approval of Midwest uranium mining
project, subject to conditions
- Panel demands for evidence that the proposed tailings
disposal won't have long term impacts on Fox Lake
- Panel expresses severe mistrust in COGEMA, the proposed
tailings management facility operator
On November 13, 1997, the Joint Federal-Provincial Panel on
Uranium Mining Developments in Northern Saskatchewan issued its
report to the government recommending the approval of the Midwest uranium mining project in
Northern Saskatchewan, Canada, subject to conditions.
The public review period for the Panel report ended February 5,
1998 (view SERM notice ).
> View Panel report: executive summary
· full report (191k)
> View Panel press release
The Midwest uranium deposit contains 13,200 tonnes of uranium at a high ore grade of 3.8%. The mining technology to be used is the same as that described for
the Cigar Lake project above.
The tailings resulting from the chemical uranium extraction from
the ore are also to be dumped in the open pit of the former JEB
uranium mine nearby, using the same management scheme as
described for the Cigar Lake project.
Public hearings on the project were held in the period of May 27
to June 15, 1996.
A bilingual (English/French) 14-page summary (The Midwest
Project - Environmental Impacts Statement - Executive Summary,
August 1995) of COGEMA's EIS is available from the Panel
View Comments on the Environmental
Impact Statement for the Cigar Lake and Midwest Joint Ventures
Proposal (46k), prepared by Radioactive Waste Management Associates for the Saskatchewan Uranium Coalition (RWMA publication
On August 26, 1996, COGEMA Resources submitted a new plan for a
changed tailings disposal concept, compared to the plan
described in the EIS: the new plan comprises a combined pervious
surround and subaqueous disposal scheme.
On May 2, 1997, the Panel released additional information
received from the proponents, discussing the changed tailings
disposal technology. Public hearings on this matter were held on
August 26-28, 1997.
For updates on the review process, see CEAA Midwest Panel Information
> View Dawn Lake ownership details
Revocation of Mining Facility Removal Licence
On February 28, 2002, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), after holding a one-day public hearing (February 28, 2002), approved an application by Cameco Corporation, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, for revocation of its Mining Facility Removal Licence for the Dawn Lake Project, located in the McClean Lake area of northeastern Saskatchewan.
> Download CNSC Notice of Hearing (Dec. 20, 2001) (PDF)
> Download Transcript of February 28, 2002, Hearing (PDF)
> Download Record of Proceedings, Including Reasons for Decision (March 22, 2002) (PDF)
> View deposit info
Rio Tinto writes off Roughrider high-grade uranium deposit
A post-tax impairment charge of $257 million was recognised relating to the Roughrider uranium deposit in Canada. Roughrider's recoverable amount was determined to be nil following a decision in the first half of 2017 to cease further expenditure on the project.
(Rio Tinto: 2017 full year results, Feb. 7, 2018)
Environment Saskatchewan announces preparation of Environmental Impact Assessment for proposed underground exploration at Roughrider deposit
On Sep. 19, 2013, Environment Saskatchewan announced that the preparation of an Environmental Impact Assessment is underway for the proposed underground exploration at Rio Tinto's Roughrider deposit. The proposal includes the development and operation of an exploration shaft and drifts and auxiliary facilities.
> View Rio Tinto - Roughrider Advanced Exploration Program, 2013-014 (Environment Saskatchewan)
Rio Tinto has acquired Hathor, owner of Roughrider deposit
On Jan. 12, 2012, Rio Tinto announced that it has acquired the remaining Hathor common shares and is now the registered holder of 100 per cent of the outstanding Hathor common shares.
On Jan. 7, 2012, Rio Tinto announced that it had acquired 93.76% of the outstanding common shares in Hathor Exploration Limited and now intends to acquire all outstanding Hathor common shares not tendered to the offer through a compulsory acquisition under the Canada Business Corporations Act.
After a bidding war with Cameco, Rio Tinto now holds 84.26% of the outstanding common shares in Hathor Exploration Limited, the owner of the Roughrider deposit. (I-Net Bridge Dec. 13, 2011)
Positive results of Preliminary Economic Assessment announced for Roughrider uranium deposit
On Sep. 13, 2011, Hathor Exploration Limited announced positive summary results of a preliminary economic assessment conducted for the Roughrider Uranium Deposit, including the West and East Zones, but not the Far East Zone.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility
Preliminary Assessment of economic viability of Roughrider deposit initiated
On June 22, 2011, Hathor announced that it has initiated an independent, NI 43-101 compliant Preliminary Assessment ("PA") of the Roughrider Uranium Deposit. The PA will evaluate, in detail, the economic viability of developing the deposit as it is currently defined, and express the viability in the form of a net-present-value analysis (NPV). The study will be authored by SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc. Completion is expected in approximately four months.
> View Shea Creek ownership details
Areva/UEX plan 950 m deep exploration shaft at Shea Creek
UEX Corporation announced that it has been informed of, and fully supports AREVA Resources Canada Inc.'s decision to launch the regulatory process regarding
the sinking of an exploration shaft and development of an exploration drift at
its Shea Creek Uranium Project. The proposed shaft has been strategically
located between the Anne and Kianna Deposits to provide underground access to
both deposits and the highly-prospective corridor between them. The proposed shaft will have a vertical depth from surface of approximately 950 metres and an estimated capital cost of $100 million (CDN).
(UEX Apr. 10, 2007)
Cogema Resources intersects 27.4% U3O8 over 8.8 metres at Shea Creek
"Hole SHE-114-5, the fifth unconformity impact from pilot hole SHE-114, intersected 27.4% U3O8 [23.2% U] over 8.8 metres, including 58.32% U3O8 [49.5% U] over 3.5 metres, at a point approximately 30 metres above the unconformity. The unconformity was intersected at 714.3 metres along the hole."
(UEX July 13, 2005)
Revocation of Mining Facility Removal Licence
On February 28, 2002, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), after holding a one-day public hearing (February 28, 2002) approved an application by COGEMA Resources Inc., Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, for revocation of its Mining Facility Removal Licence for the Shea Creek Project, located in the Cluff Lake area of northwest Saskatchewan.
> Download CNSC Notice of Hearing (Dec. 20, 2001) (PDF)
> Download Transcript of February 28, 2002, Hearing (PDF)
> Download Record of Proceedings, Including Reasons for Decision (March 22, 2002) (PDF)
> View deposit info
Positive Preliminary Assessment announced for Horseshoe and Raven deposits
On Feb. 23, 2011, UEX Corporation announced that it has received the results of the Preliminary Assessment (PA) Technical Report on the Horseshoe and Raven deposits.
The report finds the economics of mining the 100%-owned Horseshoe and Raven deposits to be very robust and recommends the project be advanced to a preliminary feasibility level, and that this next phase of study also include the 100%-owned West Bear Deposit.
The PA assumes that uranium processing and tailings management will be conducted through a toll arrangement at one of the two nearby mills, one operated by Cameco Corporation and the other by AREVA Resources Canada Inc. As Cameco's Rabbit Lake mill is located within 4 km of Horseshoe and Raven and has excess capacity, the Report has focused on this facility.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility
(Gryphon and Phoenix deposits)
> View deposit info
Denison announces improved economics for mining of Wheeler River uranium deposit
On June 26, 2023, Denison Mines Corp. reported the results of
- the Feasibility Study completed for In-Situ Recovery (ISR) mining of the high-grade Phoenix uranium deposit and
- a cost update to the 2018 Pre-Feasibility Study for conventional underground mining of the basement-hosted Gryphon uranium deposit.
> Calculate Mine Feasibility: Phoenix (ISL) · Gryphon (UG)
CNSC invites comment on draft Environmental Impact Statement for Wheeler River acid in situ leach uranium mine project
On November 21, 2022, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) opened a 90-day public comment period on the draft environmental impact statement (EIS), for the proposed Wheeler River Project submitted by the proponent, Denison Mines Corp.
Submit comments by February 18, 2023.
> Download related documents (CEAA)
Denison submits Environmental Impact Statement for Wheeler River acid in situ leach uranium mine project
On Oct. 26, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced the submission of the draft Environmental Impact Statement ("EIS") for the Wheeler River project to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.
Denison obtains approval of feasibility field test for acid in situ leaching at Phoenix deposit
On July 12, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced that it has received approval from the Province of Saskatchewan to prepare, construct, and operate the facilities required to carry out the In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") Feasibility Field Test planned for the Phoenix deposit at the company's 95% owned Wheeler River project.
On Aug. 8, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced that it has received a License from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) for the In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") Feasibility Field Test planned for the Phoenix uranium deposit at the company's 95% owned Wheeler River project. Receipt of this license, together with the previously announced approval from the Saskatchewan Minister of Environment, means that the Feasibility Field Test is fully permitted.
On Oct. 17, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced that it has successfully recovered uranium bearing solution from the Phoenix in-situ recovery ("ISR") Feasibility Field Test underway at the company's 95% owned Wheeler River project.
On Dec. 12, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced the successful completion of the neutralization phase of the Phoenix in-situ recovery ("ISR") Feasibility Field Test ("FFT") at the Company's 95% owned Wheeler River project. Sampling of monitoring wells around the FFT site has confirmed the successful restoration of the Leaching Zone to environmentally acceptable pH conditions, as outlined in the applicable regulatory approvals for the FFT. The leaching phase consisted of the controlled injection of an acidic mining solution into a portion of the existing Test Pattern within the ore zone and the recovery of the solution back to the surface using existing test wells.
Denison announces agreements with Kineepik Métis Local #9 over Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project
On June 23, 2022, Denison Mines Corp. announced that it has entered into a Participation and Funding Agreement with Kineepik Métis Local #9 ("KML"), which expresses Denison's and KML's mutual commitment to the co-development of an agreement supporting the advancement of the in-situ recovery ("ISR") uranium mining operation proposed at the Company's 95% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project. The Participation Agreement builds on an existing letter agreement between Denison and KML with respect to the support of KML's contributions to, and participation in, the Federal and Provincial Environmental Assessment process for the Wheeler River Project.
Additionally, Denison and KML have entered into an Exploration Agreement in respect of Denison's exploration and evaluation activities within KML's land and occupancy area.
Denison announces positive in situ leach field test results for Phoenix high-grade uranium deposit at Wheeler River project
On Oct. 28, 2021, Denison Mines Corp. announced the initial results of a "highly successful" In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") field test program completed within the commercial-scale ISR test pattern installed in the Phase 1 area of the high-grade Phoenix uranium deposit at the Company's 95% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project in northern Saskatchewan.
[The unconformity-related deposit is located at 410 m below ground surface. There is no mention of a freeze wall in this release.]
Denison approves inititation of Feasibility Study for Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project
On Sept 22, 2021, Denison Mines Corp. announced that the Wheeler River Joint Venture has approved the initiation of an independent Feasibility Study for the In-Situ Recovery mining operation proposed for the Phoenix uranium deposit.
Denison enters into agreements with English River First Nation over Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project
On April 6, 2021, Denison Mines Corp. announced that it has entered into a Participation and Funding Agreement and Letter of Intent (the "LOI") with the English River First Nation ("ERFN") in connection with the advancement of the proposed in-situ recovery ("ISR") uranium mining operation at Denison's 90% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project. Additionally, Denison and ERFN have also entered into an Exploration Agreement in respect of Denison's exploration and evaluation activities within the ERFN traditional territories.
Denison buys uranium to finance development of Wheeler River uranium mine project
On Mar. 15, 2021, Denison announced that "Net proceeds [approx. US$ 75 million] of a Unit Offering are anticipated to be used to fund the strategic purchase of uranium concentrates to be held by Denison as a long-term investment, intended to support the potential future financing of the advancement and/or construction of the Company's flagship 90% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project. Uranium purchases are planned to be made in the uranium spot market, with a target of accumulating approximately 2.5 million pounds U3O8 [962 t U]."
On Apr. 1, 2021, Denison announced that it has successfully secured 2.5 million pounds of uranium concentrates [962 t U], at a weighted average price of USD$29.61 per pound U3O8 and a total cost of approximately USD$74 million, as part of its previously announced project financing initiative in support of the future advancement and/or construction of the company's 90% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project.
Denison adopts 400m-deep freeze wall design for in situ leach mining of Phoenix deposit at Wheeler River project
On Dec. 1, 2020, Denison Mines Corp. announced the adoption of a freeze wall design as part of the in-situ recovery mining approach planned for the high-grade Phoenix uranium deposit at its Wheeler River project, thus abandoning the previously favoured freeze cap design.
A 200m-deep freeze wall design has recently been proposed for in situ leach mining of the THT deposit at its Waterbury Lake project.
In situ leach field tests resumed at Wheeler River uranium deposit
On July 27, 2020, Denison Mines Corp. announced the resumption of In-Situ Recovery ("ISR") field testing activities focused on the high-grade Phoenix uranium deposit, at the Company's 90% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project. The ISR field test work planned for 2020 is intended to build additional confidence in the results of an independent hydrogeologic model developed for the deposit, and to support further field work expected to be required for the completion of a future Feasibility Study.
In situ leach field tests completed at Phoenix uranium deposit
On Dec. 18, 2019, Denison Mines Corp. announced the completion of the "highly successful" 2019 In-Situ Recovery (ISR) field test program within the high-grade Phoenix uranium deposit at the company's 90% owned Wheeler River Uranium Project.
CNSC to hold unhearing on scope of factors to be considered in the conduct of an environmental assessment for Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) will conduct a hearing based on a written submission in December 2019 to consider the scope of factors to be considered in the conduct of an environmental assessment (EA) for a project description submitted by Denison Mines Corporation (Denison). Denison has submitted a project description for its proposed Wheeler River Project, consisting of an in situ recovery uranium mining and processing operation located in the Athabasca Basin in northern Saskatchewan.
> Download: Notice of Hearing in Writing, Dec. 4, 2019
> Download: Record of Decision, Dec. 20, 2019
On Mar. 20, 2020, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) received notification from Denison Mines Corp. of the temporary suspension of the Environmental Assessment for the Wheeler River Project as of March 20, 2020.
In situ leach field tests initiated at Wheeler River uranium deposit
On June 26, 2019, Denison Mines Corp. announced the initiation of an ISR [In-Situ Recovery] field test program at the Phoenix deposit, designed to collect an extensive database of hydrogeological data. The data will be used to evaluate the ISR mining conditions present at the deposit, and is expected to be incorporated into a detailed ISR mine plan, as part of the completion of a Feasibility Study for the project.
CNSC seeks comments on project description for Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project with freeze wall
The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) has received a project description from Denison Mines Corp. for the Wheeler River Project, a proposed new uranium mining and processing operation. The proposed project is located in the Athabasca Basin in northern Saskatchewan, approximately 600 km north of the city of Saskatoon, 4 km west of Highway 914 and midway between Cameco Corporation's Key Lake Mill and McArthur River Mine. The proposed Wheeler River Mine would produce up to 5400 tonnes of U3O8 annually for 20 years.
The proposed project includes underground and surface facilities to support the mining and processing of uranium ore using the In Situ Recovery (ISR) mining method. The main components include: an ISR wellfield; two freeze plants on the surface to establish a frozen isolated mining chamber underground; an on-site plant to process the mining solution recovered from the ISR wellfield; surface facilities to support the short and long term storage of waste rock; water handling infrastructure and a water treatment plant and additional infrastructure to support mining activities. [emphasis added]
Submit comments by June 30, 2019.
> Access CNSC project page
> Access CEAA project page
> Access Denison Wheeler River Project, 2019-005 (Gov. of Saskatchewan - Environmental Assessment)
Denison Mines Corp. initiates Environmental Assessment process and engineering studies for Wheeler River in situ leach uranium mine project
On Dec. 18, 2018, Denison Mines reported that the company's Board of Directors and the Wheeler River Joint Venture ("WRJV") have approved the advancement of the Wheeler River project. The WRJV has approved a CDN$ 10.3 million budget for 2019 (100% basis), which is highlighted by plans to initiate the Environmental Assessment ("EA") process as well as engineering studies and related programs required to advance the high-grade Phoenix deposit as an in-situ recovery ("ISR") mining operation.
Positive results of Pre-Feasibility Study announced for Wheeler River uranium mine project; in situ leach mining involving freeze cap selected for Phoenix high grade deposit
On Sep. 24, 2018, Denison Mines announced the results of the Pre-Feasibility Study for the Wheeler River uranium mine project. The study assumes underground mining for the Gryphon deposit and in situ leach mining for the Phoenix high grade deposit. To contain the in situ leach mining solution within the ore zones, an artificial freeze cap is planned to encapsulate the deposit, as impermeable layers are present at the bottom of the deposit only.
Denison Mines Corp. announces 88% increase in Indicated Mineral Resources at Wheeler River high-grade uranium project
On January 31, 2018, Denison Mines Corp. announced an 88% increase in the Indicated Mineral Resources estimated for the Wheeler River project, raising them to 50,812 t U at a grade of 2.80% U.
Pre-Feasibility Study initiated for Wheeler River uranium deposit
On July 19, 2016, Denison Mines Corp. announced the initiation of a Pre-Feasibility Study ("PFS") for its 60% owned Wheeler River property, located in the eastern portion of the Athabasca Basin region in northern Saskatchewan.
Positive Preliminary Economic Assessment released for Wheeler River uranium deposit
On May 12, 2016, Denison announced the filing with SEDAR of the Technical Report dated Apr. 8, 2016.
Jet bore system (JBS) mining was selected for the high grade Phoenix Zones A and B1, similar to the mining method utilized at the Cigar Lake mine. This mining method requires freeze wall protection in a tent configuration.
Conventional longhole open stoping with backfill is planned for the Gryphon deposit. No freeze wall protection is needed due to the location of the deposit well below the unconformity in basement rock.
The project production period is 16 years from January 2026 to the end of 2041.
This PEA is based on the assumption that mill feed from Wheeler River will be trucked to an existing uranium mill in northern Saskatchewan for processing under a custom milling agreement. At this time, custom milling at the JEB uranium mill on the McClean Lake site is considered the most likely scenario.
On Apr. 4, 2016, Denison Mines announced the results of the Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) on its 60% owned Wheeler River Project. The PEA assumes the current long term contract price for uranium of US$ 44 per lb U3O8.
(Denison Apr. 4, 2016)