OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 17, 2012) - The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) announced today its decision to issue a licence to Strateco Resources Inc. (Strateco) authorizing the excavation of an exploration ramp and construction of surface buildings and facilities to support the Matoush Underground Exploration Project located in the Otish Basin, Quebec. The licence will be valid for a period of five years from October 16, 2012 until October 31, 2017. The scope of the licence is limited to advanced exploration activities, and not to possible future mining activities which would be subject to a new environmental assessment and an operating licensing hearing, with opportunities for public participation.
In making its decision, the Commission considered information presented at a public hearing held on June 5 and 6, 2012 in Mistissini, Quebec and on June 7, 2012 in Chibougamau, Quebec. During the public hearing, the Commission received and considered CNSC staff recommendations and submissions from Strateco and 97 intervenors. Following the hearing, the Commission requested additional information from CNSC staff. CNSC staff's supplementary submission was received on July 9, 2012.
The Commission is satisfied that the licensee meets the requirements of section 24 of the Nuclear Safety and Control Act, and concludes that Strateco Resources Inc. is qualified to carry out the activities that will be permitted under the licence, and that it will make adequate provision for the protection of the environment, the health and safety of persons, and the maintenance of national security and measures required to implement international obligations to which Canada has agreed.
With this decision, the Commission includes the conditions as recommended by CNSC staff and set out in the draft licence attached to CMD 12-H7. In addition to the recommended licence conditions, the Commission directs CNSC staff to add licence conditions with the following hold points to the Matoush Project:
- the excavation of the exploration ramp and construction of the mine portal will not begin before the Commission is satisfied that all data required for the completion of the aquatic baseline data set are collected and analysed, and the data set is established; and
- none of the activities associated with releases of effluents into the environment will be allowed to start before a basic monitoring program is fully implemented.
The Commission states that no activities listed in the licence shall commence before a financial guarantee acceptable to CNSC staff is in place.
A Record of Proceedings, including Reasons for Decision and transcripts of the hearing are available on the CNSC Web site at www.nuclearsafety.gc.ca, or by contacting the CNSC. The webcast of the hearing is archived on the same site for a period of 90 days.
The CNSC regulates the use of nuclear energy and materials to protect the health, safety and security of Canadians and the environment, and to respect Canada's international commitments on the peaceful use of nuclear energy.